Religion, and how it may be influenced by the virtues of the seven planets
The mystery of the seven stars that you saw in my right hand and of the seven golden lampstands is this: The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches, and the seven lampstands are the seven churches.
Before the arrival of organized religions, our ancestors had a belief system whose main focus was related to the Earth on which they dwelt. This way of thinking gave rise to Animism, Shamanism, Totemism and similar indigenous beliefs. Whatever you like to call it, they all have one thing in common – these people lived in the perfect harmony with nature.
In ancient Greece, the chief deity was Zeus, the thunder god – a Jupiter for Romans, and also the gigantic planet of our Solar system. In astrology, Jupiter is the planet that brings prosperity and abundance, in its positive aspects, something that was very true of the ancient Greek society.
From Vedic teachings of the East sprang Buddhism, and Buddha – its founder, carries the name of another planet – the planet Mercury. Mercury governs the higher intellect, and in in Alchemy, it signifies the balancing force, positioned in the middle between the gold and the silver (the Sun and the Moon) just like its day (Wednsday) is positioned in the middle of the week, and like the main teaching of Buddhism is “the middle way“.
As for the Christianity, the parallels between the Christ and the Sun are nothing new for many of us, so I will not go deeper here in naming all of the symbolic that ranges from the date of the Christmass that falls precisely on the winter solstice to 12 the apostles and other religious iconographies. In virtually all esoteric teachings, Sun represents the higher, enlightened soul that is purified and on the way to salvation – something that is in a nutshell, the main message of Christianity.
Then again, Christianity is very closely related to Judaism, whose one God is called Yahweh, but it is a less known fact that his name bears a striking resemblance to the moon good of the ancient Egyptians – Iah.
Besides that, the main prophet of this religion was Moses, whose name is probably derived from the Egyptian “msy” meaning “son”. This is interesting from a perspective of a theory which states that the similarity between the words “Sun” and “son” is not an accidental one. If we apply the same logic here, there is a parallel to be made with the Mesopotamian lunar deity Sin, that many authors have already considered as a prototype for Yahweh.
This way of thinking could also explain the etymology of Slavic (and Indo-European) word for Moon – mesec, but I do not wish to drift too far away from the main topic of this story and will leave it at that. The Moon symbolizes human intellect and material wealth.
As for Islam, there are many alternative theories that connect it to the planet Saturn. Most of them revolve around the worship of the black stone of Kaaba, but there are some other interesting theories as well. You can check most of these claims by simply typing “Islam Saturn” in your internet search. I just want to point out here that some of these articles and videos are insulting to Islam, calling it a Satanistic religion because of this alleged Saturn worship. This is not my personal view, and I believe that this kind of logic comes mainly from ignorance. Like any other planet, Saturn has its positive and its negative aspects in astrology, and those who believe in astrology know that its influence is equally important as that of any other planet. Saturn is known as “the great teacher” and some of its influence relates to discipline, hard work, rulership, and structure, as well as restrictions.
So what are we left with? Of the seven planets known to the ancients, only Mars and Venus are not mentioned yet. Here it gets a bit tricky, but I would argue that Mars was of a high importance to ancient Romans, maybe even more so than Jupiter, who is traditionally regarded as a chief deity that was copied directly from the Greek pantheon. The red colors or Rome, as well their whole history, still recall an image of a war machine, an image that has survived for millennia. But even without this parallel, we can be certain that a war god was worshiped as a chief deity in many prehistorical societies.
As for the Venus, the morning star, we do know that she was worshiped under many names in virtually all periods of history. But there is another important religion, one of the world’s oldest, whose primary focus may have revolved around this planet, ever since the time of the matriarchate. That religion is Zoroastrianism. Its dualistic teachings target mainly the individual soul, trapped in the world of passions – the one that Venus represents. Moreover, the name of its founder, Zoroaster, whose name was first recorded by Greeks, already carries the Greek word for the star – aster. The first part – zoro, may relate to Indo-European “zar” – light, from which came the Slavic word “zora” – dawn. This etymology is debatable but personally, I find it much more convincing than “he who manages camels”.
In the end, here is how our list would look like. To spice things up, I added the seven wonders of the world of the ancients, as they could also be related to the planets, just like many other things that revolve around the number seven.
|2||Vedic religion / Buddhism||Mercury||Lighthouse of Alexandria|
|3||Zoroastrianism||Venus||Hanging Gardens of Babylon|
|4||Ancient Greece||Jupiter||Statue of Zeus at Olympia|
|5||Judaism||Moon||Temple of Artemis at Ephesus|
|6||Ancient Rome||Mars||Mausoleum at Halicarnassus|
|7||Christianity||Sun||Colossus of Rhodes|
|8||Islam||Saturn||Great Pyramid of Giza|
So that was my hypothesis. One could argue that the ancient Greeks did not worship only Zeus, and that ancient Romans did not worship only Mars, and therefore this is all just an unusual coincidence. But I do not think that it was that simple. Just like modern music is based on the 7 notes and 12 semi-tones, (thank you Pythagoras) the influence of the 7 planets and 12 constellations may have been divided in religion. Similar to musical modes, each of these teachings carries a certain overtone, but at the same time consists of all other notes / influences. In short, all of these teachings carry a part of the message that is necessary to understand the whole harmony. Was this done by some divine intervention, supreme human intellect or is it just a strange coincidence, you can decide for yourself. I am just putting it out there.
Here is a little exercise. Below is one of the charts with basic planetary influence that can be found on the internet. Could this influence be related to the above-mentioned religions, and could some other ancient beliefs be added to this list (Egyptian, Nordic…etc.) How would they be sorted on a chart that has 12 instead of 7 spots?
An example of the basic planetary influence.