Puzzle: enlightenment is universal, not tribal. How then can it be true that Jesus is the only way?
In "Jesus is the only way to heaven, the only name by which we are saved", I proposed "Jesus" is a code-word for determinism (the realization of iron block universe determinism). A similar equation is that "Jesus" or the "I" in "I am the only way", or "the son" in "the son is the only way to the Father", means the willing sacrifice of your firstborn childself, which is egoic thinking that centers around the freewill assumption.
To become conscious of heaven, sacrifice your childish system of thinking that is centered around the freewill assumption. That's the only way to become conscious of God's sovereignty over your every thought at all times past, present, and future; thus we can logically say that "Jesus is the only way to salvation", where "Jesus" is a personification of the principle of sacrificing your firstborn childself.
Follow Jesus and pick up your cross to offer your childself way of thinking as a willing sacrifice on the altar -- this is the only way to righteousness, to become a member of the true Israel, hidden church, offspring of Abraham, obedient slave of Allah, child of light, member of the chosen race, a member of the nation of priests.
I was born from a woman and then I was born from God.
I had to bind and sacrifice my first-born child, so that I could be born again as an adult, entering the kingdom of Heaven.
The archetypal Son of Man (or Child of the Human) is given to each man by God and must be sacrificed.
The Gnostic Theology of Paul
Includes Christ as archetypal man, and Jesus as archetypal son (or child-thinking) of each human"
Jesus is the *only* son of God, because each human being has one child-self (to be sacrificed by letting go of childish freewill thinking). The God figure maps to our higher, adult self. The Jesus figure -- God's son-self -- maps to our lower, egoic self.
We are created in the image of God: we have a higher self, identified with God, and a lower self, or son (or daughter), identified with God's son. God sacrifices his only son -- that is, his childish freewill thinking, to manifest truth -- you could say high God sacrifices the demiurge, his only son.
Abraham binds -- fastens -- his only son (his childish mental model based around irrational, freewill thinking) to the sacrificial altar. God nails his only son (his lower virtual freewillist self) to the cross. Dionysus is son of Zeus and is sewn into his "thigh". One portrayal of Dionysus is a *marble pillar* with mask. Prometheus is tied to a rock. The idea of binding, tying, attaching the only-child-self to something solid, refers to experiencing one's stream of mental constructs being frozen into spacetime. One is thus crucified on the spacetime cross -- time fixity goes with the no-free-will insight, and space fixity here goes with the no-separate-self insight. If we picture the cross as time + space axes, that would be no-free-will + no-separate-self insights.
>>At this stage I could feel the effects coming like a steam train. I vaguely remember handing the pipe off to one of the others and laughing madly, then... I sat there, feeling heavy and vaguely dissappointed that nothing was happening. I looked at the others and could see that they were checking to see if anything was going to occur. I stretched out my arms to show them 'look, I'm fine' but I couldn't seem to get my hands disentangled from the house. I looked along one arm and was amused to see that about halfway up my forearm, the skin changed colour and texture so that my hands blended seamlessly into the house. I sensed that this was perfectly normal. At this point, I said to everyone 'look - my hands are stuck to the house!' I could hear them all laughing. I felt like I was in the past, sitting outside a very familiar childhood home with very familiar people (like really intense deja-vu). I can't really describe this very well, but I got the distinct impression that I had 'remembered' what it was like to take this sacrament - Like I had done it thousands of times before, but I had somehow forgotten those times. Now I remember (this feeling is still with me now!). (By the way, to the others, I was lying on my back with my eyes shut and a grin on my face. My hands were moving slightly, but otherwise I was completely still throughout the above.)
The entire Bible is all mythic allegory. There is no exodus, no Abraham, no Isaac, no Eden, no Paul or Apostles. These scriptures are much closer to hellenistic mystery religion allegory of religious experiencing and enlightenment than has been realized.
These Old Testament fantastic mythic allegories for religious experiencing have their storylines set in a pseudo-historical context instead of in the obviously mythic realm as Hellenists do -- but the pseudo-history and obviously mythic backdrops are equivalent: both are domains of metaphor for the phenomena and insights of primary religious experiencing.
Abraham in doubt had a son by a slave woman but that is the son of doubt and incomprehension, not Abraham's true son -- it's Abraham's false son; that line is Abraham's false sons, the false sons of Israel.
Abraham in faith had a son by his wife, the son of faith whom Abraham was willing to sacrifice. This line is the true sons of Abraham, the true Israel. The true sons of Abraham are those who realize no-free-will. The false sons of Abraham are freewillists.
I part the sea, so that I pass from "slavery" of delusion to "freedom" in metaphysical truth, passing between walls of waves. Just look: are the walls waving, or not?
This mental transformation from "slavery" to "freedom" is an ironic reversal; the mind actually transforms from freewillist thinking to no-free-will thinking. The Paul figure is made to talk about the reversal of status in heaven. The Roman Empire had a complex hierarchy of slave statuses and free statuses, so that some slaves had much higher status than some free people -- some slaves had the same status as some free people, making it impossible to simply say "slaves will become free", so Paul's wording is more general, saying those with higher status will have lower and vice versa.
Every thought captive:
During the peak window of the altered state, every thought is taken captive by the Ground.
Jesus returning on a cloud:
I travel in a cloud. Just look: do you see mist and cloudiness?
When I researched mystic-state phenomena metaphors in acid lyrics, I reached a point where I found enough instances of themes that I could formulate thematic categories and start handling lyric phrases in bulk. I am now at that point with respect to religious metaphors.
A riddle is posed to us: the thorn-crowned man on the cross, judged as guilty of falsely claming to be sovereign/king/powerful. There is a sign at top of this allegorical symbol. The sign provides the clue or solution to the riddle of the meaning. The sign reads:
The King of the Jews
To solve the riddle, one must find the replacement text that reveals the meaning of the phrase "The King of the Jews". Who or what is "the king of the Jews"?
The solution is any of:
The Delusion of Free-Will Agency
Delusion of Free Will
The Delusion of Free Will, Moral Agency, Personal Sovereign Power
That is who is looking chastised and humbled -- the one who claimed to be a king and was put down by the powerful actual political ruler. It may be historically true that some Jewish rebel leaders were in fact mocked by not only being crucified, but crowned and crucified to mock and show up their utter failure as would-be kingly rebel leaders.
The Hellenistic mythmakers then saw the similarity of this and Prometheus chained, and other "tied to tree" mythic dying/rising figures and realized what an excellent expression of ego death this is, with the idea of escaping the cross being tied to the wish to transcend Necessity/Fate/determinism.
Wishing to transcend determinism is like an apprehended false claimant to the throne being crucified but escaping the cross. Note that the canon reveals a subtle tradition of Jesus being rescued from the cross while still alive, not dead yet -- such a close call with death was a Homeric action-story theme.
Rising at the end of ego-death is like gratuitous new life, now knowing determinism but still acting somewhat freewillist, we are now risen not back into delusion, but into justification -- now justified in pretending to be freewill moral agents.
2-level mystery meaning and Hellenistic-Jewish allegorical pseudo- history of the Diaspora
Christianity is the ultimate Hellenistic Jewish-styled mystery religion. The Diaspora Jews were essentially Hellenistic but were especially interested in pseudo-history and allegory based on pseudo- history.
Augustine later defined a twofold system of exegesis *for the Old Testament*, in which he accepted the literal, fleshly, historical meaning but looked also for an allegorical, spiritual, mystic meaning in which he looked for references to the New Testament Christ in the Old Testament.
He was wrong in simply accepting the literal historical Old Testament stories as literally true -- they were written as pseudo-history. And he was wrong to imagine seeing references to the New Testament Christ in the Old Testament. I don't know if he applied the same twofold distinction to the New Testament, differentiating between the literal/fleshly/historical and the allegorical/spiritual/mystic layers of meaning in the New Testament.
Even if he did apply his two-layer reading to the New Testament, he probably fumbled the lower level by accepting it as literal history, and fumbled the higher level by failing to understand the higher mythic meaning.
His two-layer approach was in the right ballpark. But the literal historical level of the Old Testament and New Testament should not be taken literally. Allegorically, it's futile to read the Old Testament as a "mystic" prophecy of the New Testament.
All the profound meaning is in the mystic reading of the New Testament, which tells the story of the profit-driven moral-cleansing priests putting to death an ethical entheogen illusionist who reveals that our sense of sin is completely cancelled through the metaphysical experience of determinism. When we believe in "Jesus", we specifically believe in that which the entheogen shows about our moral agency, which is that the freewill-wielding ego is essentially an illusion.
The New Testament was written from the very first to be confusing yet to finally reveal their sly method. The "Paul" character is a fictional Apollonius-type or Simon-Magus type travelling apostle of a mythic temple-undercutting entheogenic savior figure. This fictional Paul was described as battling against people who couldn't keep straight that the story was pseudo-fiction.
The idea of mistakenly taking the pseudo-history of the New Testament as an actual history was deliberately written into the New Testament battles of Paul from the very first. The idea of such confusion is designed into the Christian mystery from the start. These scriptures deliberately are ambiguous and deliberately contradict each other.
The scriptures insist Jesus existed in the flesh, died bodily, and was supernaturally resurrected, along with various miracles, *and* they also -- on the other hand -- reveal that Jesus was removed prematurely from the cross, and was so physically traumatized after his (non-supernatural) recovery that Mary Magdalen didn't recognize him, and the scriptures often talk about parables and hidden meanings.
The scriptures explicitly say that they involve hidden meanings, and they contradict each other. The only rational way to make sense out of the New Testament is to admit that the scriptures present you ultimately with a choice: either take them as literally true, supernatural and all, or else treat them as mostly or even entirely allegorical.
After enough investigation of how Hellenistic myth and mystery religions work, and the nature of Hellenistic Jewish-style allegorical pseudo-history, the rational investigator can conclude that the New Testament is entirely allegorical. The New Testament claims to be or contain a hidden mystery. How is this hidden mystery revealed? Through the Holy Spirit, which gives the initiate eyes to see, and the ability to interpret the meaning.
Hellenistic mystery religions had a two-level approach that was weaker than this ultimate Christian mystery religion. The Greek myths were first told to the beginning initiates *as mythic stories* (not as historical realities) and then the entheogenic sacrament was administered to reveal the experiential higher meaning of the mythic story.
Adding a Jewish element meant intensifying the initial story to present it as a pseudo-history, even claiming it to be true history. And that is exactly what the lower level of the New Testament mystery of Christ was designed to be, from the very start: a false history, a pseudo-history, a deception *meant for early initiates*.
The New Testament taken literally is a deception, just as it was designed to be, in full accordance with mythic mystery religions when combined with the Jewish tradition of pseudo-history as seen in Philo's absurd, whimsical claims of the Greek philosophers having been taught by Moses. I here show the *reason* that the lie of the bodily supernatural Historical Jesus was created.
Once we understand *why* the false story of Jesus was created and put forth as a deliberate deception, we can finally accept that Christian literalism is indeed foolishness -- it was designed to be foolishness from the very start; foolishness was always the whole idea for the lower half of a two-level initiation system in which the pure meaning was only later to be revealed.
For Christianity to be an actual *mystery* religion, a religion of hiding and then revealing, it is required to first hide and then reveal. The Gnostic, obviously mythic systems lacked the initial hiding, the initial deceptive and misleading claim that all the historical and supernatural Jesus tales are literally true.
Ramesh Balsekar's system is not very interesting because it lacks that mystery: it only reveals moral exemption through determinism, without cherishing the benefits of the moral delusion of freewill. He only talks about the disadvantages of freewill morality and the advantages of determinist trans-morality.
True *mystery* Christianity required a sincere lie of Literalism to be first taught, claiming the Jesus story to be non-mythical. *Mystery* Christianity required teaching the Jesus story *as literal history* including some supernatural components, especially the resurrection. After that, the option was presented to switch to an entirely allegorical reading so that the literal history was entirely rejected and replaced by pure allegorical reading.
This Christian mystery was an unstable, dubious system headed for trouble of one sort or another -- but this Christian mystery, switching from absolute literalism to absolute allegory, is the perfect endpoint of the idea of a mythic mystery religion in which you tell people one scheme of meaning but then later tell them the real meaning.
The only "codes" of prophecy in the scriptures are humorous allegory mixtures allusing to the domains of the intense mystic altered state and the domain of socio-political domain, using kingdoms and kingships as allegory for ego death and rebirth experiences. *That* is the *true* "hidden code" in the Bible. Astrology and healing and magic are other included domains of allegory, involved the same way.
Today I figured out what "the law" means to the fictional Jewish/Hellenistic figure Paul. This discovery is part of a rushing stream of insights from the past few days; all the elements of the context of the origins of Christianity are falling into place. I don't know if I should continue telling *when* a connection falls into place.
In most cases, if I haven't posted about a certain idea before (regarding theory of origin of Christianity and what the real meaning of myth is), you can assume that I discovered the meaning in the past couple days. I think I'll just include a brief note stating what day I discovered the meaning of a mythic element (that is, any aspect of the canonical Bible scriptures, or Hellenistic mythic/epic/mystery allegory, or religio-philosophical myth).
Protestant theology completely distorts the notion of "the law" that is attributed to the Paul figure. All elements of Protestant theology are wrong; they all need to be re-indexed and redefined as a set:
What was "the law" as far as the Paul figure was concerned? Consider a hybrid of Jewish and Hellenistic ethical thinking and philosophical systems of ethics and personal conduct. In the most general cybernetic sense, what function does "the law" have for the culture of the time? What did these people do with the law? They used it as a system of personal guidance and conduct.
I can exactly and precisely describe what "Paul" meant, about being condemned under the law, because I followed the same path of torment and enlightenment described by the Paul figure. It actually has to do with taking full rational responsibility for one's conduct -- it's very sober, not "religious" at all, really. To get a grip on one's self control and master oneself, one must consider abstractly the philosophy of self-guidance, of *defining* precisely one's goals, one's Intention Set.
If you look through my notebooks of 1985-1988 and beyond, it is mostly about wrestling with the questions of personal self-guidance, goal setting, laying out a plan at a high level and in detail, for both how one should conduct oneself and what particular goals one shall set for oneself. What Paul calls "the law", and what philosophy books may file under "ethical philosophy", today is more exactly called "set of personal guidance ideas and principles" -- I called this my "Intention Set (IS)".
Just to give you a slight example, one of the last terms I used heavily in that era was "TCP/RIS", which I kept in the foreground of my thinking and which appears heavily in my self-grappling notebooks around 1989 -- that shorthand expands to "Transcendent Construct Processing / Realize Intention Set". I effectively created a whole system and theory of personal-management cybernetics, as an alcoholic might eventually do.
I was not an alcoholic like the enlightened masters Alan Watts and Ozzy Osbourne, but more like the Paul figure, I was a controllaholic plagued and beset often to the point of suicidal frustration with the generalized problem of "Why am I, in practice, unable to define a system of conduct and adhere to it?"
"Paul" and I were not the slightest bit concerned with supernaturalist "salvation", as the Christian Literalist theologians would have it, but strictly with the practical problem of "How can I secure self-control so I can define a way of being, and then do it?"
For "Paul", "the law" had nothing to do with "religion" or "moral conduct" as we've gotten used to thinking of it, but much more starkly and practically, exclusively with the generalized cybernetic self-control problem of, as I most starkly put it, IAE (Intend And Enact). Why am I unable to Intend And Enact, or PAD -- Plan And Do?
Such thinking leads to a furious sustained battle, a Zen sickness of frustration as described by the alcoholic self-control theorist Watts, that eventually leads to enlightenment about self-control. It never leads to some kind of perfect transcendent posi-control, which is impossible, but the release of Zen includes the relief of understanding why such posi-control is impossible; the result is like the idea that cessation of grasping is cessation of clinging to likes and dislikes (Watts).
I agree with "Paul" that "the law" -- that is, dedication to a system of personal guidance and conduct -- when attempted to be taken seriously, amounts to a method of frustration that condemns the egoic control system and leads to enlightenment or "salvation from the law". God gave us Jews the Torah -- that is, from a transcendent alien non-logical source we have a set of ideas to answer the existential practical self-guidance questions "how shall I live, what shall I do, how shall I conduct myself?"
This is not about the particular content of the Ten Commandments or the Torah, but the much more universal and generalized concept of Any System Of Personal Conduct (SPC).
When a person tries with all their might and all their heart to adhere to a particular detailed System of Personal Conduct -- such as "don't think any lustful thoughts" -- or "don't think any thoughts" -- one will become frustrated to the point of "cutting off one's arm to gain enlightenment" as joked about in Watts, or to the point of suicidal frustration and despair -- and then one will become enlightened.
Afterwards, the furious frenzy of the self-control project may die down, with a take-it-or-leave-it attitude and an acceptance of the in-principle impossibility of the expected posi-control. Watts has a term for the technique of the Zen master deliberately provoking the student to this kind of frustration about self-control, though I think in practice most koan technique is a dismal degraded mimicry of the true method of frustration that leads to enlightenment.
The true, effective koan-like technique that leads to enlightenment is, for example, "never think of a white elephant". The bastardized, magical, incomprehending mimicry of that technique, that leads to only delusion and frustration, and prevents enlightenment, is "think of one hand clapping". Impossible perfectionism of self-control that arose under a deluded set of assumptions about the nature of self-control, time, and the mind, dies out after enlightenment.
Alcoholics and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder victims would not necessarily get rid of or master their conduct by being enlightened about self-control cybernetics, but they might forgive themselves more and be a little less of a slave-driver over themselves. The main idea of Alcoholics Anonymous is the doctrine that you are not in control of yourself; God is in control of you -- this is very close to Transcendent Knowledge, the Cybernetic Theory of Ego Transcendence, or "cybernetic transcendence".
In the night (during initiation), the egoic sovereign self -- the egoic control agent -- dies as king, becomes impotent, and the higher self could kill that lower self (does, in a way, sacrifice it). The higher Self that transcends and gives rise to all actions of all selves is the true king and the true controller, and during initiation the mind realizes that the higher Self (the One) has total control over every lower self and could kill the lower self or do anything to it like a puppetmaster.
The lower mind could be made to do anything and transgress itself. This is reflected in the allegory of the first king, Saul, versus the second king, David. Saul is the childself, King Ego. During initiation in the long night, the higher adult Self, the Transcendent King, is revealed.
David could have killed (done anything to) Saul, just as the loosened transcendent mind during the long night could have done anything to the lower mind -- as a harmless token of this total dominant position of the transcendent self over the lower self, David "hiding in the cave" only cuts a piece of Saul's cloak while Saul is defecating in the cave, ignorant of David's presence -- and David then reveals the piece of cloak to Saul as evidence of the total advantageous position David had over Saul during the night.
Same with another night in which David sneaks into Saul's camp and steals Saul's wine jug (think "mixed wine") and spear (think eagle-pecked liver, think Eagle standard, think pierced side/heart/liver of will, and scepter of kingly control).
There is a certain risk in a myth theorist studying the Bible. By knowing it in a vague sort of way, I can brainstorm; all options seem open. Then I go to the scriptures, and they usually fit my hypothesis only 2/3.
To indicate how weak my knowledge of the Bible is: I didn't know that Abraham begat, ultimately, Jesus. This is, mythically, extremely important for certain relations of symmetry.
When Abraham was willing to kill his real son, his only son, his last possible son, a son who had no descendents yet, Abraham was thus prepared to kill off an entire people: *all* the people constituting the True Israel -- Abraham would have slain *every one* of God's people. Abraham was willing to sacrifice and commit to God, *all* people who discovered and believed no-free-will. According to mythic logic, all no-free-will people are descendents of Abraham.
If Abraham had sacrificed Isaac, there would be no descendents -- no people to correctly know God's power, no people to discover and acknowledge no-free-will.
To make the point, while remaining within mythic logic, that spiritual descent from Abraham is distinct from mere biological descent, God chooses only certain sons -- not necessarily the firstborn legally legitimate son -- to connect Abraham to Jesus. There seems to be room here for making the natural point that, out of all the sons of one man in this chain, the son should be picked who is faithful to God -- that is, who knows no-free-will.
This way, we stay within the mythic framework of supposedly genetic descent, yet preserve the real point, which is spiritual descent. Most important to the individual is the idea that when you discover no-free-will, you should *not* harm or end your life or sacrifice your future or wellbeing, because that would be the end of your biological line -- or rather, your own viable life as a legal good citizen, or even more spiritually, your ability to pass on your discovery to other people (who aren't related to you).
Recall that the Jesus figure has been made to say to hate your biological family and, I suppose, love your spiritual family as your real family. The Bible, unlike Greek myth, is pseudo-literal or quasi-literalist. It expresses purely spiritual ideas using an emphatically literalist form.
When Isaac (a mythic pseudo-historical figure) was released from being bound to the altar of sacrifice, he went on to have descendents, all of whom were the true Israel. Although they were all the true Israel, still the point remains that what matters to get from Abraham to Jesus is the chain of inheriting faith, or understanding and acknowledging no-free-will.
In Numbers, the seer Balaam is sent by the king to curse Israel. Balaam's donkey sits down (in a labyrinth-equivalent space), refuses to move forward, and Balaam sees the lord's angel of death. He then blesses Israel instead of cursing Israel.
The story about Paul's fall was deliberately designed as a parallel type. Paul is riding to persecute the Christians, he falls from his ride (traditionally shown as a horse, but it could well be a donkey), sees a blinding, transforming light, and proceeds to evangelize for the Christians.
I'm looking for a book of Old Testament/New Testament story-parallels. Based on Web pages, I *might* be alone in pointing out this parallel. Literalist Christians would dislike comparing Paul, officially a good guy, to Balaam, officially a bad guy, though they admit Balaam was good in blessing Israel, and Paul was bad in setting out to persecute Christianity. Such close parallels are embarrassing to literalism because they show the fictional, purely literary-allegory nature of the Bible.
Book list: Jewish Mysticism
This book list is intended to cover Jewish mysticism without Kabbala; people should stop the trendy misuse of language that reduces and narrows Jewish mysticism to only Kabbalah, or stretches the word 'Kabbalah' out of shape to supposedly cover all of Jewish mysticism.
Amazon offers a wide range of information about books, even including Search Inside, which can show many pages, essentially the entire book online.
One mythic theme is striking a rock and water flowing forth. Metaphysics interpretation: the block universe is frozen, including a single pre-existing future. But a kind of relative change resides within this block, as change resides in a moving picture (cinema film) that is sitting motionlessly on the shelf. Rock = block universe, water = relative change (virtual change, apparent change).
These mythic ideas all make much more tangible sense when considered from the point of view of the mythic altered state of cognition -- loose cognition.
Frozen time, metaphysics, and determinism are key ingredients that are missing from the new field of entheogen scholarship.
I finished reading about the differences between Gnostic, Reformed, and Catholic Christianity -- the 3 main branches. I feel the pull of Greek religion, but not contemporary entheogen religion which is ignorant of frozen-time metaphysics and is too formless, too dragged down by newagism. I can't wait for Wilber's book Boomeritis about this syndrome. I expect some entheogen commentary there.
Heinrich wrote (paraphrased):
>>The Jonah section in Strange Fruit/Magic Mushrooms specifically refers to the difficult passage that fly agaric sometimes produces -- the endless and unbearable fly agaric agony. The Jonah story refers to the vomiting that saved Jonah: a direct reference to fly agaric, notorious for making people vomit. The Jonah tale is specifically about fly agaric consumption: difficult passage; vomiting that brings relief or salvation (as with the Hindu gods in the Rudra story earlier in the book); a 'plant' that springs up overnight, only to wither the next day after being attacked by worms.
In more recent usage, Mescaline and Ayahuasca are also notorious for making people vomit. Even such a pure and clean entheogen as LSD, on odd occasion, sometimes causes a vomiting reaction so that it is hard to keep the more-valuable-than-gold doses down.
There is also incomplete, single-level treatment of the Jonah story in Acharya's book Christ Conspiracy. All revisionist researchers need to pool and combine their readings of Jonah, one of the very most important and revered stories in the Bible. Bennett, Acharya, and Heinrich all cover the Bible from front to back, or can easily be so arranged, making such collation of interpretations easy. Bennett, Merkur, and Thorne don't seem to cover Jonah, surprisingly.
Acharya reveals one aspect of Jonah, and reveals her own disjunction with the esoteric understanding of the scholars she cites: Barbara Walker writes "Swallowing by the whale indicates an initiation rite, leading to rebirth. ... the fish was really a womb" (compare 'cave').
Acharya mentions and yet ignores or drastically reframes and dissolves away this pointer to initiation, continuing: "the tale of Jonah is astrological ... represents the sun in the "womb" of the earth, and supports that reading by Doane's 1882 book Bible Myths and Their Parallels in Other Religions, which is probably materialist/lower-level symbology, lacking recognition of true *experiential* esoteric allusion. We could define multiple levels of symbology:
1. Myth x means external materialistic thing (vegetative fertility, planets).
2. Myth x means ordinary-state psyche experiences (pop version of Jungian/Campbellian symbolism; the lower, ordinary-state aspect of Metzner's transformative symbology in the book The Unfolding Self).
3. Myth x means physical experiences caused by visionary plants.
4. Myth x means psyche experiences and experiential insights caused by visionary plants.
I specialize in recognizing allusions describing classic cognitive dynamics that occur in the psyche during the mystic state peak window, as opposed to allusions to visionary plants themselves or to the bodily effects of visionary plants. What is revealed in explanations of myth-religion texts falls into categories; the text can be explained as meaning:
Materialist or intellectual things other than plants and plant-induced experiences:
sex and reproduction
Visionary plants themselves:
Amanita shape and lifecycle
Metaphysical and philosophical experiential insights:
Disappearance of sense of self-control agency
Experience of no-free-will, and timeless cosmic determinism
Experience of timelessness
Experience of no-separate-self, and of bodymind unity with others, esp. other initiates
Calming effect of prayer to a desperately postulated compassionate uncontrollable transcendent controller to abruptly end the looming, discovered, unleashed threat of control-chaos and self-destruction of personal responsible agency
Jonah is a conversion allegory, describing an intense experience classically produced by the entheogenic mystic state. At first one is against and ignorant of God as uncontrollable transcendent controller, thinking of oneself as primary control agent -- Balaam setting out to curse the Israelites, Jonah setting out to go as far as possible from God's intended destination of preaching to Ninevah, Paul setting out to persecute the Christians.
Jonah being thrown overboard to pacify the threatening turbulence is a variation of a classic theme of transcendent prayer ending self-control chaos. He willingly is thrown overboard, describing how the initiate must toss overboard the egoic freewill self-oriented worldmodel in order to attain to a worldmodel that can stand in the face of mystic experiential insight.
The turbulent sea, threat of shipwreck, and prayer is a standard major Hellenistic theme alluding to entheogenic self-control breakdown during initiation.
The moment one realizes one's puppethood with respect to cosmic determinism/heimarmene/Fate/Necessity, and realizes one's utter dependence on an utterly hidden source of one's thoughts (perceiving logically but not directly the black-box apophatic god standing over or under one's realm of controllership), the chaos-threatening self-control turbulence immediately subsides, even more quickly than it loomed up like a sudden demonic storm.
This highest aspect of mythic meaning is usually unrecognized: myth is, more than anything, a description of self-control dynamics in the psyche during the peak window of the entheogenic intense mystic altered state. Myth also means various lower meanings such as planetary bodies, but the central hub of meaning reference is dynamic phenomena in the psyche during the peak window.
Explanations that present the lower meanings without addressing the description of intense mystic-state psyche experiential phenomena are reductionistic and more elementary.
Many people can recognize the allusion to the plant or to lower psychobody effects (perceptual distortion, vomiting) or mid-level psyche effects (sense of timelessness), but the final destination for myth-religion writings is the highest effects in the psyche: the mental conversion or being-turned from a worldmodel based on ego as prime mover and creator of one's destiny, to a worldmodel based on the apophatic alien hidden logically intuited god or mysteriously uncontrollable god-level as revealed prime mover and creator of one's destiny.
The hidden divine uncontrollable control level is also often framed as savior -- that is, dolphinesque rescuer and arbitrary generous benefactor. Jonah's big fish is comparable to a dolphin; he gets rescued while praying inside the big fish. Entheogen scholarship decoding needs to be centered around this domain of meaning, or lead up to it, to truly understand the meaning of myth-religion allegorical esoteric writings.
For example, danger -- standard in esotericism -- is not the danger of vomiting, but rather, of destructive loss of practical self-control, followed by conversion and prayerful right dependent relation on the hidden Ground, which is the ultimate peak experience and is rightly central in myth-religion allegory.
All explanations of mythic meaning are correct and incomplete and reductionist, if not centered around this meaning-domain of self-control breakdown and resetting through some type of transcendent prayer of dependence on mysterious generous divine compassion.
What is really sacrificed is one's lower self, the naive freewillist way of thinking, in which the mind's mental worldmodel is centered around and based on the assumption and experience of oneself as metaphysically free moral agency and prime mover and creator of one's fate, destiny, and future.
A goat or sheep makes sense as a sacrifice in that these two animals form a pair highlighting the will as the central concern of religious enlightenment and center of religious experiencing. In the "goat vs. sheep" mythic pair, the goat represents naive childish freewill thinking, while the sheep represents comprehension, in the mystic altered state, of no-free-will -- the illusory nature of free will and metaphysical freedom, and the primacy of timeless frozen block-universe determinism.
Sacrificing a goat or ram is a symbol of one's sacrifice of one's own lower mode of thinking, which is the freewill and "create your own future" assumption. Sacrificing a pig is sacrificing an animal that has a heart like a human's; the pig's heart is a symbol of one's own heart as a symbol of sacrificing one's own naive freewill assumption.
'Graven images' is a metaphor for Literalism.
'Baal worship' is literal sacrifice of one's literal first-born child instead of one's childself part of one's psyche.
'Idolatry' is on the same order, taking ego and egoic thinking and separate-self as reality, and represents Literalist thinking.
'Evil' and 'disorder' and 'chaos' are used as metaphors for egoic pre-logical or illogical thinking.
The 'sinful body' is a metaphor for lower, egoic thinking. The 'mind of Christ', or the 'spirit of God', is a metaphor for higher, transcendent thinking.
"God's repentance" is the biblical story pattern: God says "I'm going to destroy idolaters." The idolaters repent. As a result, God repents and says ok, I won't destroy them.
Freewill or open-future theologians think that God's repentance throughout the Old Testament indicates that he doesn't know the future; the future is open (not yet established or visible) to God. That is incorrect. In reading religious texts, remember to always consider each idea first as a description of an intense mystic-altered state phenomenon.
1. When the mystic starts to discover that control-thoughts are mysteriously given to the mind timelessly, and are frozen into the timeless spacetime block, there is commonly a sense of increasing doom; a felt pull inward toward a control vortex; a dimly remembered (so it feels) terrible holy transgression awaiting ahead on the worldline; self-reinforcing out-of-control feedback buildup of some virtually remembered fatal doom, a tragic future lying in store like a monster poised over a railroad track -- a monster that draws you toward it through controlling your memories and control-thoughts, a devouring strange attractor steering the mind's train of thought towards it.
The mind virtually remembers that it is to be coerced into willing the cancellation of the will, a dreadful sense of coerced will and the forceful truth of having to "must" do something tremendous, some essential generalized transcendent crime that breaks law itself, tears the very legal fabric of society itself, some type of fearsome sacrifice. This state is metaphorically described as "God has decided to destroy you as an idolater."
2. As soon as the mind coherently realizes its situation and control dynamics correctly, that conceptual grasp is the logos given to the mind -- the divine reasoning about personal controllership and then about having to receive transcendent resetting of the personal controllership delusion, now qualified and purified. It may take some seven "purification" sessions to gradually conform the mind's mental worldmodel to this dynamic relationship about control agency.
When the mind is finally brought into the holy of holies, brought to an understanding of its vulnerable dependence on a completely mysterious uncontrollable transcendent controller, this is "repenting" and "converting" -- that is, the mind is made to acknowledge or credit or praise God.
3. When the mind is brought to credit the critical role of the mysterious uncontrollable transcendent controller as the very source of the mind's control-thoughts, normally or formerly completely hidden, God repents, and the risk of being forced to do some horrible coerced willful crime against the moral fabric itself vanishes. One has been brought into the true Israel and into the promised land.
The above frightening realization and insight is premised on a no-free-will, preexisting future model of spacetime and control. The fact of being given a new mental model and being reprieved from what you could have been made to do through coercion of your will by the transcendent mysterious will, in no way implies an open future, or metaphysically free will.
One can spiritually be caught up into the mysterious transcendent controller outside the spacetime block, but the spacetime block remains the foundation for this mystic experience.
Official theologians who have no experience with the mystic altered state can hardly contribute much of any great insight regarding the nature of personal responsible agency and its relation to God's sovereignty.
A common Biblical mythic theme is the last-born (or second-born) rather than the firstborn gains the inheritance of the spiritual kingdom. A person is born first as a lower thinker, then is born as a higher thinker during mythic death/rebirth. The earlier, egoic self-concept dies, and the new, transcendent self-concept now stands instead; the second-born inherits the kingdom of righteousness and knowledge of God's sovereignty.
The 1st-born is a mere idol worshipper; the firstborn child is not in the direct line of spiritual descent. The youngest son is the one chosen by God as righteous spiritual leader.