I wrote this in 1996, and many people felt I was wrong. Then in 2003 archaeological finds in Margiana, Turkmenistan, confirmed my linguistic research!!! Thought maybe some might like to read more of what Scientist are still trying to understand, I might be right on more of what this article claims. ALSO I HAVE INCLUDED THE FOLLOWING LINKS TO THE DISCOVERY OF HAOMA/SOMA BEING CANNABIS
By dan quaintance (dan of dan&mary) Revised March 7, 1996
Once again I find myself upon the trail of enlightenment as I traverse the "Mystery" of soma. For those unfamiliar with me, I enjoy the biplay of words as well as tracing word origins; especially words that connect etymologically with my Sacred Deity-Sacrament;
In the book "FOOD OF THE GODS", by Terrance McKenna; page 100 under the subcaption "SOMA- WHAT IS IT?"; Mckenna begins:
"A crucial question arises in any discussion of this powerful plant on whose ecstatic visions all later Hindu religiosity is based: What was the botanical identity of Soma, 'the pillar of the World'?"
Mckenna goes on to explain why the question would have been impossible to frame in the nineteenth century because Sanskritist, Botanist, nor Pharmacist intercommunicated. He tells how in the twentieth century, Scholars, giving more credence, or respect, for the factual veracity of ancient texts, have now attempted to decipher the identity of Soma.
"These attempts have ranged from the casual to the exhaustive. The game is precisely the sort that the scholars love to play; the answer must be contained in fragmented descriptions in a long-dead language filled with color words and words which occur once in a literature of a given language. What plant best fits the scattered references to the physical form of this most mysterious flora?"
Mckenna, a couple of paragraphs later, gives a clue as to how the Identity of Soma may have become confused:
"...as linguistic differences arose, as trade routes became ever longer, and as local substitutes for Soma were experimented with and the local identity of Soma became mingled with myth. Progressively more esoteric, it became a secret teaching, delivered orally, and known but to a few, until it was finally forgotten."
This totally ignores the possibility of the word Soma merely continuing a linguistic change into some yet unidentified word today; that is used to define an intoxicant with similar properties with the original Soma.
Today the are some that believe the mystery of Soma has been solved. In Testimony of the COUNCIL ON SPIRITUAL PRACTICES presented by Robert Jesse to the Committee on Drugs and the Law of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York; 10 October 1995; Jesse presented Wassons belief that Soma is from the mushroom, Amanita muscaria, as if this is an accepted fact:
"There is now substantial evidence that the Eleusinian Mystery rites, performed annually near Athens for almost 2000 years, featured a mystical revelation brought on by the drinking of a hallucinogenic brew et al. 1978 ). The Sanskrit Rig-Veda, one of the oldest religious texts known, praises a mind-altering substance called soma, which has been identified by Wasson ( 1968 ) as the psychoactive mushroom Amanita muscaria."
However in Food of The Gods Mckenna questioned Wassons beliefs that Soma was from the mushroom Amanita muscaria; Mckenna, points out that Amanita muscaria is to unpredictable in its effects to have become relied on as Soma; as well, that it is not native to the region; as such McKenna does not believe that the Amanita muscaria was used to make Soma; Mckenna believes Soma to be from the psilocybin mushroom; which he believes began as a religion at the "birth of cognition" as pointed out in "Food of the Goods", page 120 last paragraph:
"The psilocybin mushroom religion, born at the birth of cognition in the grasslands of Africa, may actually be the generic religion of human beings. All later adumbrations of religion in the ancient Near East can be traced to a cult of Goddess and cattle worship, whose Archaic roots reach back to an extremely ancient practice of ingestion of psilocybin mushrooms to induce ecstacy, dissolve the boundaries of the ego, and reunite the worshiper with the personified vegetable matrix of planetary life."
Mckenna makes his mushroom connection upon the theory that with the reverence shown Cattle, in the ancient religions, it would only be logical that they would have discovered the mushrooms growing in the dung; eaten them; had unexplainable visions, and thereupon began the religion.
One must remember though, that cows provide milk as well as dung; and I believe more time should have been taken to investigate this other attribute of cattle; I will show shortly there are numerous references in the Sacred text of the Zorasterians, that refer to the intoxicant in question, as being "with milk".
Now that we have the ground work as to why we do not know what Soma is, and the rules to go by as a scholarly study; I will turn back a couple of McKenna's pages to page 99 wherein McKenna states that Soma was prominent in the pre-Zoroastrian religion of Iran, and was a "plant on whose ecstatic visions all later Hindu religiosity is based"; he then gives the connection between the Zoroastrian Haoma, and the Sanskrit Soma, as:
"'Haoma' and 'Soma' are different forms of the same word, derived from a root meaning to squeeze out liquid, which is -su- in Sanskrit, and -hu- in Avestan."
I thank Terrance McKenna for his words I have borrowed above; they certainly help to get the background of the Mystery of Soma to an understandable beginning. However, as I alluded above, I have contrary opinions with those of Mckenna; as to which modern plant name may be most accurately identified, as the modern name of the ancient Soma.
My research lead me in directions other than the path Mckenna chose.
This is supposed to be a mystery, so, the symbology of the ancient relics must be analyzed with this in mind. Take the cow; most everyone immediately wants to jump to the conclusion that the cow is there as cow; either supplying dung, or milk, to the Soma mystery. In doing so they close their minds to the possibility it may be a metaphor representing a plant bearing liquid like a cows milk; nutritious. Then as the rumor passed from tongue to tongue it eventually became a real cow of which the milk was used to prepare this, mysterious, nutritious, intoxicant. The Vedas, as well as the Avestas, have verses giving this intoxicant the characteristic of being nutritious as well as intoxicating,.
Another point that confuses; is to limit, or narrowly define the roots of language, that carried with them much broader definitions; as well as the fact, that the same idea may be expressed using different roots of words; that all go back to the narrow beginnings of the Indo-European language family; that may have become mingle; confusing the mystery further; as Mckenna did suggest.
Mckenna gave but one meaning to the roots -su- and -hu-; they have also been attributed with the similar meaning of "extract" which in a sense to squeeze out the liquid is to extract the liquid; the root could, has been taken in either sense. I mention this so the reader will be aware, when analyzing the ancient text, that either sense of the word may be given in descriptively defining traits, purposes, or methods to which Soma/Haoma was used, or prepared; which will all more positively show a link to the modern equivalent of the ancient Soma.
I suggested earlier other roots that may give insight into the mystery should also be explored, and myself, I figured whereas we are looking at "milk" being another feature, its roots should be examined as well.
Dictionary of Word Origins by John Ayto; Arcade Publishing 1990 supplies the information that the word milk comes from;
"an Indo-European base -*melg- which denoted "wiping" or "stroking". The way of obtaining milk from animals is to pull one's hands down their teats, and so -*melg- in due course became to be used for "milk"...." Another derivative of Indo-European -*melg- was the Latin verb -mulgere- "milk" which has given English -emulsion- and -promulgate-"
Wiping, Stroking, Extracting, Squeezing all suit the purpose of "milking", or supplying milk. An emulsion is prepared by the mixing of one liquid with that of another.
Another point to consider; with -su- and -hu- meaning extract, or squeeze out; what is the -ma- at the words ending define? Sanskrit, Sumerian, and the Chinese had much influence, one upon another, in these early times we are looking at; though I have been unable to locate the implication of the -MA- in Sanskrit, in the Chinese -MA-is Hemp.
Thoughout the Zoroastrian's ancient text known as the Avestas, written in Avestan, the Haoma is repeatedly referred to as Yellow Haoma, and on occasion White, with its most prominent feature describing it as being an "averter of death". This is in remarkable coincidence with the Chinese EthnoBotanic Herb of Longevity, Cannabis Sativa, which in China is known by the common name Han Ma. To an Etymologist studying the changes of words, and there history, it is easily seen the potential Etymologic link between that of Han Ma, and Haoma; given the mingling of these cultures during this era of history. Further the Chinese have many other common names for the Herb Cannabis Sativa, and, one presents another interesting circumstance to ponder; this additional name is Huang Ma; literally meaning Yellow Hemp.
Yellow Haoma, Yellow Hemp; is this circumstance, or coincidence as well?
It might further be noted, that the male hemp flowers are yellow, and those of the female white; this may explain the use of both the yellow, and white colors; with Haoma!
In the Avestas Haoma is further confused by the use of the Pahlavi word for Haoma, which is "Hom"; and within the Bhundahis declares it the "Gokart tree"; which is transliterated in some versions as "Gaokerena"; the nomenclature given is dependent upon the translator, and language in which it is being translated into. Regardless of the name they all seem to give the same attributes descriptively; and are defined in very descriptive detail in the ancient text i.e.;
In the "BUNDAHIS", ("Creation"), or Knowledge from the Zand Translated by W. E. West, from Sacred Books of the East, volume 5, Oxford University Press,1897. CHAPTER 27:4 is very discriptive of the Haoma(Hom), and therein calling it the Gokart Tree; as well as giving to it features attributed the Biblical "Tree of Life";
"4. Near to that tree the white Hom, the healing and undefiled, has grown at the source of the water of Aredvivsur; every one who eats it becomes immortal, and they call it the Gokard tree, as it is said that Hom is expelling death; also in the renovation of the universe they prepare its immortality therefrom; and it is the chief of plants. "
Another good place to look for a description is in the song, or hymn, to Haoma; the "Hom Yasht", (Haoma Hymn), Translated by L. H. Mills (From Sacred Books of the East, American Edition, 1898. ), amongst others references are; YASNA - Chapter 9.Verse 2
"I am, O Zarathushtra Haoma, the holy and driving death afar; pray to me, O Spitama, prepare me for the taste. "
Beginning in verses 19-24 the blessings of Haoma are requested; all beginning with "O Haoma, thou that drivest death afar.."; herein continued, attributes of Haoma; well defined:
"...I beseech of thee for (heaven), the best life of the saints, the radiant, all-glorious." "...this body's health (before that blest life is attained). " "...long vitality of life." "...that I may stand forth on this earth with desires gained, and powerful, receiving satisfaction, overwhelming the assaults of hate, and conquering the lie." "...that we may get good warning of the thief, good warning of the murderer, see first the bludgeon-bearer, get first sight of the wolf. May no one whichsoever get first the sight of us. In the strife with each may we be they who get the first alarm!" '"...Haoma grants to women come to bed with child a brilliant offspring and a righteous line."
I would note here that the studies on Ethnic Hemp ultilizing populations of Jamaicans in the 70's showed that the children were healthier, and better adjusted, then the non-using counterpart of Jamaican society; as well there have been archeologic finds that verify that hemp has been used since ancient time; to help them during delivery.
The attributes continue:
"... grants to those ( how many! ) who have long sat searching books, more knowledge and more wisdom." "..Hail to thee for thou dost ask no wily questions, but questionest direct." ".. with this thou art begirt on the summits of the mountains, for the spreading of the precepts" "..thou house-lord, and thou clan-lord, thou tribe-lord, and chieftain of the land, and thou successful learned teacher, for aggressive strength I speak to thee, for that which smites with victory, and for my body's saving, and for manifold delight!"
YASNA - Chapter 10. goes more into descriptions now of where this plant grows as well a physical definition; which is herein found as follows:
"3...I praise the cloud that waters thee, and the rains which make thee grow on the summits of the mountains; and I praise thy lofty mountains where the Haoma branches spread. 4. This wide earth do I praise, expanded far (with paths), the productive, the full bearing, thy mother, holy plant! Yea, I praise the lands where thou dost grow, sweet-scented, swiftly spreading, the good growth of the Lord. O Haoma, thou growest on the mountains, apart on many paths, and there still may'st thou flourish. The springs of Righteousness most verily thou art, (and the fountains of the ritual find their source in thee)!"
Recall earlier the point that was made by McKenna:
"A crucial question arises in any discussion of this powerful plant on whose ecstatic visions all later Hindu religiousity is based: What was the botanical identity of Soma, 'the pillar of the World'?"
At the turn of the twentieth century, the Indian Hemp Drugs Commission set up to study the use of hemp in India; this was the first recognized Government study; the following is in the report:
"...It is inevitable that temperaments would be found to whom the quickeninq spirit of bhang is the spirit of freedom and knowledge. " bhang is the Joy-giver, the Sky-filler, the Heavenly-Guide, the Poor Man's Heaven, the Soother of Grief...No god Or man is as good as the religious drinker of bhang... the supporting power of bhang has brought many a Hindu family safe through the miseries of famine. To forbid or even seriously to restrict the use of so gracious an herb as the hemp would cause widespread suffering and annoyance, and to large bands of worshipped ascetics, deep-seated anger. It would rob the people of a solace in discomfort, of a cure in sickness, of a guardian whose gracious protection saves them from the attacks of evil influences..".' "...in the ecstasy of bhang the spark of the Eternal in man turns into light the murkiness of matter or illusion and the self is lost in the central soul fire. Raising man out of himself and above mean individual worries, bhang makes him one with the divine force of nature and the mystery 'I am he' grew plain."
With the above describing the plant and its attributes, the following further provides a most likely link between the Hindus Bhang, and the ancient Soma-Haoma! Chapter 10.7 goes on:
"7. Wasting doth vanish from that house, and-with it foulness, whither in verity they bear thee, and where thy praise in truth is sung, the drink of Haoma, famed, health-bringing (as thou art). [(Pazand) to his village and abode they bear him.] 8. All other toxicants go hand in hand with Rapine of the bloody spear, but Haoma's stirring power goes hand in hand with friendship.[Light is the drunkenness of Haoma (Pazand).] Who as a tender son caresses Haoma, forth to the bodies of such persons Haoma connects to heal. 9. Of all the healing virtues, Haoma, whereby thou art a healer, grant me some. Of all the victorious powers, whereby thou art a victor, grant me some. A faithful praiser will I be to thee, O Haoma, and a faithful praiser (is) a better (thing) than Righteousness the Best; so hath the Lord, declaring (it), decreed. 10. Swift and wise hath the well-skilled Deity created thee; swift and wise on high Haraiti did He, the well-skilled, plant thee. 11. And taught (by implanted instinct) on every side, the bounteous birds have carried thee to the Peaks-above-the-eagles, to the mount's extremest summit, to the gorges and abysses, to the heights of many pathways, to the snow-peaks ever whitened."
This could be where the Eagle comes into the Myth of the mythical "Life-Giver"; or, in a rather obscure link, that the above passage offers; may further support the concept of Hemp being just one more word for the ancient Soma; by reason the Chinese card game Mah-Jong has a Ma-Que on one face of the tiles; Ma-Que in Chinese is literally "Hemp-bird"; I bring attention only to this one verse, however, there are numerous references throughout the Avestas tying birds with Haoma; similar to the above.
The song continues:
"12. There, Haoma, on the ranges dost thou grow of many kinds. Now thou growest of milky whiteness, and now thou growest golden; and forth thine healing liquors flow for the inspiring of the pious. So terrify away from me the (death's) aim of the curser. So terrify and crush his thought who stands as my maligner. 13. Praise be to thee, O Haoma, (for he makes the poor man's thoughts as great as any of the richest whomsoever.) Praise be to Haoma, (for he makes the poor man's thoughts as great as when mind reacheth culmination.) With manifold retainers dost thou, O Haoma, endow the man who drinks thee mixed with milk; yea, more prosperous thou makest him, and more endowed with mind."
Aside from all the other attributes before given; and of which only the Hemp plant completely fits without fudging (of all the other plants thus far proposed), Here we see a most direct parallel between the ancient Zoroastrian Haoma and the Bhang of the Hindus; which is made of hemp mixed with milk; and in the modern recipe, which uses Cows milk; today spices are added; though the only reference to additional ingredients of the Haoma in the Avesta is: "prepare me for thy taste".
The song continues:
"14. Do not vanish from me suddenly like milk-drops in the rain; let thine exhilaration's go forth ever vigorous and fresh; and let them come to me with strong effect. Before thee, holy Haoma, thou bearer of the ritual truth, and around thee would I cast this body, a body which (as all) may see (is fit for gift and) grown. 15. I renounce with vehemence the murderous woman's emptiness, the Jaini's, hers, with intellect dethroned. She vainly thinks to foil us, and would beguile both Fire-priest and Haoma; but she herself, deceived therein, shall perish. And when she sits at home, and wrongly eats of Haoma's offering, priest's mother will that never make her, nor give her holy sons! 16. To five do I belong, to five others do I not; of the good thought am I, of the evil am I not; of the good word am I, of the evil am I not; of the good deed am I, and of the evil, not. To Obedience am I given, and to deaf disobedience, not; to the saint do I belong, and to the wicked, not; and so from this on till the ending shall be the spirits' parting. (The two shall here divide.) 17. Thereupon spake Zarathushtra: Praise to Haoma, Mazda-made. Good is Haoma, Mazda-made. All the plants of Haoma praise I, on the heights of lofty mountains, in the gorges of the valleys, in the clefts (of sundered hill-sides) cut for the bundles bound by women. From the silver cup I pour Thee to the golden chalice over. Let me not thy (sacred) liquor spill to earth, of precious cost."
In the appendix of THE HASHEESH EATER, BY FITZ HUGH LUDLOW, in NOTE B; Ludlow includes a letter; from a Dr. Palmer, whom ludlow considered an expert on Indian customs; Ludlow states he transcribed and sent the letter to the Editor of the New York Tribune. In this letter some light surrounding the Indian terminology of hemp is given; as well, the practice of gathering hemp into bundles, as is mentioned in the paragraph above; also shown below is the "infusion", or "emulsion" of gunjah with water to make "bhang; this further supports the plant is poviding the "milk" or "liquid" that is "extracted" or "milked" from the plant; this shows the plant being mixed with water; not milk; and it is for this reason, I believe, this is what is being referred to in the Avesta; wherein it refers to "Haoma with milk"; this should be appearant from the follow quote of Ludlows; wherein "Bhang" is described as being "infused with water" :
"...At the season of flowering, a resinous substance exudes and concretes on the slender stalks, leaves, and tops of the hemp plant in India, a sticky gum which causes the young stems to adhere together tenaciously in the bundles of gunjah. Men, now dressed all in leather, are sent into the fields to run to and fro, sweeping the plants with their garments, from which afterward they diligently gather the resin that has adhered. This is the churrus, wherein is all the narcotic virtue of the herb, all the seventh heaven of hasheesh intoxication for the Hindoo and the Arab. The most potent of it comes from Nepaul. Bhang, or subjee, is the larger leaves and capsules of the Cannabis compressed in balls and sticky layers, with here and there some flowers between. Infused with water, it forms an intoxicating brew, to which, however, the Hindoos are not commonly addicted. Gunjah, mixed with tobacco and smoked in a pipe, is the shape of the drug which they popularly affect, and it is as gunjah that it is commonly sold in the shops. This comes in bundles, twenty-four of the plants entire, stalks, leaves, capsules, and tops undisturbed, and from which their resin has not been separated, adhering tenaciously. Gunjah, indeed, is the term proper to Hindostan, hasheesh being Arabic, and used to denote the tops and tenderest parts of the plant, sun-dried and powdered."
Returning to the song:
"20. Praise to the Kine; praise and victory (be) spoken to her! Food for the Kine, and pasture! 'For the Kine let thrift use toil; yield thou us food.'"
In keeping with the rules that the proposed Soma plant must best fit the descriptions attributed it, the above statement, reguarding yielding food, will further require that the plant proposed as Soma must also yield food; this the Hemp does. It is said that one handful of Hempseed will fulfill the daily nutrition requirements of an adult; further, it is one of the few nutrients that are assimilated in nutrition blocking diseases like TB and Aids; amongst others!
Continuing to the last verse of the chapter:
"21. We worship the yellow lofty one; we worship Haoma who causes progress, who makes the settlements advance; we worship Haoma who drives death afar; yea, we worship all the Haoma plants. And we worship (their) blessedness, and the Fravashi of Zarathushtra Spitama, the saint." [Note: Fravashi=Good Spirits]
In closing of this piece, attempting to propose that Hemp may have been the ancient Soma, I wish to refesh the readers mind of the root meaning of the -SU- and -HU-, from which Soma and Haoma are respectively derived; and which carry with them, the linguistic value of "to extract" or "to squeeze out". With that in mind I leave this lengthy piece just a tid-bit longer; with the inclusion of a modern Hindu Bhang recipe. Please note the "squeezing out" step in the preparation instructions; and, most Sincerely, to your Health! So how is this Soma/Haoma/Bhang prepared? Following is a recipe that I found on the Internet: ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
from _Flavors_of_India_ by Shanta Nimbark Sacharoff. 2 cups water 1 ounce marijuana (fresh leaves and flowers of a female plant preferred) 4 cups warm milk 2 tablespoons blanched and chopped almonds 1/8 teaspoon garam masala [a mixture of cloves, cinnamon, and cardamon] 1/4 teaspoon powdered ginger 1/2 to 1 teaspoon rosewater 1 cup sugar
Bring the water to a rapid boil and pour into a clean teapot. Remove any seeds or twigs from the marijuana, add it to the teapot and cover. Let this brew for about 7 minutes. Now strain the water and marijuana through a piece of muslin cloth, collect the water and save. Take the leaves and flowers and squeeze between your hands to extract any liquid that remains. Add this to the water. Place the leaves and flowers in a mortar and add 2 teaspoons warm milk. Slowly but firmly grind the milk and leaves together. Gather up the marijuana and squeeze out as much milk as you can. Repeat this process until you have used about 1/2 cup of milk about 4 to 5 times). Collect all the milk that has been extracted and place in a bowl. By this time the marijuana will have turned into a pulpy mass. Add the chopped almonds and some more warm milk. Grind this in the mortar until a fine paste is formed. Squeeze this paste and collect the extract as before. Repeat a few more times until all that is left are some fibers and nut meal. Discard the residue. Combine all the liquids that have been collected, including the water the marijuana was brewed in. Add to this the garam masala, dried ginger and rosewater. Add the sugar and remaining milk. Chill, serve, and enjoy. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Is this the ancient recipe of Longevity? I think not! The reason I say this is the fact that I also know that the Hemp seed may be processed just as soya-beans are processed into soya-milk .
Soya milk is an alternative to dairy milk; it is widely available in supermarkets and health food stores. It is most commonly made by soaking soya beans in water which are then strained to remove the fibre. Soya milk provides an alternative to cow's milk for people with cow's milk protein, and/or lactose intolerance.
The Hemp seed is one of the most nutricious substances known to the human race. It is capable of supplying nutrition in nutrition blocking deceases like TB and AIDs, in which the patient literally starves to death from lack of nutrition; reguardless of the amount of food they consume, because their body does not properly process the food they eat. The hemp seed works by way of it's striking simularity, of proportions of compounds, with the compounds of our blood plasma, making it very easy to be assimulated into the blood stream directly, by-passing additional steps of digestion that are required by other forms of nutrients. In addition, and as alluded to above, the hemp seed posseses an oil that not only is essential to our health, but is capable of acting to "EXTRACT" the "THC", the intoxicant of hemp, from the plant; as "THC" is primarly oil soluable. So here we finally arrive at the conclusion, that in all likelyhood, the original drink, the ultimate drink of longevity, the averter of death, could have simply been made by grinding in a mortor, bud's from Hemp loaded in seeds, (it's doubtful there was much concern for Sensimellia in these early times), to this all one would then have to do is add water and heat, to speed the reaction/extraction of the thc from the bud's, then by choice one could strain/squeeze the juice out, or leave it in as a dietary fiber. The hemp seed has an excellant flavor; it is most likely that the spices added in the moderm Bhang attempt to emulate this flavor! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Appendix of EthnoBotanic uses of HempWorld-Wide, and Common names of Cannabis Sativa Compilation of EthnoBotanic plant uses world wide from the USDA online data base at URL: gopher://probe.nalusda.gov:7000/11/genome.databases/ethnobotdb/ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Taxon : "Cannabis sativa" Family: "Cannabaceae" Genus: "Cannabis" Species: "sativa"
"Bangue"; "Bhang"; "Canamo"; "Canamo Indio"; "Cannabis Sylvestris"; "Ganja"; "Hemp"; "Indian Hemp"; "Hint Keneviri"; "Huang Ma"; "Han Ma"; "Huo Ma"; "Kenevir"; "Ma Fen"; "Ma Jen Chiu"; "Mariguana"; "Qunnab"; "Tchene"; "Ta Ma" ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Countries of EthnoBotanic use:
"Belgium"; "China"; "Europe"; "Greece"; "Haiti"; "Lesotho"; "Java"; "Mexico"; "Morocco"; "Pakistan"; "Spain"; "South Africa"; "Trinidad"; Countries listed but unsure of meaning: "Ei"; "Elsewhere"; "Us"; ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ EthnoBotanic uses :
"Alopecia"; "Alterative"; "Analgesic "; "Anesthetic"; "Anodyne"; "Anorexia"; "Antidote(Aconite)"; "Antidote(Scorpion)"; "Antidote(Sulfur)"; "Antidote(Tarantula)"; "Antidote(Vermillion)"; "Aperitif"; "Aphrodisiac"; "Bladder"; "Cancer"; "Cns-Stimulant";"Colic"; "Cold"; "Constipation"; "Cough"; "Corn"; "Demulcent"; "Depression"; "Divination"; "Ear"; "Emmenagogueue"; "Emollient"; "Epilepsy"; "Eruption"; "Favus"; "Flabbiness"; "Flux"; "Fumitory"; "Gonorrhea"; "Gravel"; "Hairblack"; "Hair-Tonic"; "Hallucinogen"; "Hypnotic"; "Inflammation"; "Intoxicant"; "Laxative"; "Longevity"; "Magic"; "Masturbation"; "Narcotic"; "Nausea"; "Nerve"; "Paralysis"; "Placenta"; "Poison"; "Pole"; "Polyuria"; "Porridge"; "Psychedelic"; "Puerperium"; "Psychotropic"; "Rheumatism"; "Sedative"; "Senility"; "Sore"; "Spasm"; "Stimulant"; "Tetanus"; "Thirst"; "Tongue"; "Tonic"; "Tumor"; "Weaning"; "Wound"; "Vermifuge" ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Religious Freedom, "Liberty of Conscience", is a principle of foundation, of which this nations founders so reguarded, they placed it as the first in the "Bill of Rights". Our Rights, as equal Citizens demand, upon this common knowledge, hereabove shown, that as citizens of this nation we be allowed to follow Our conscience, in Our acts inspired by belief, performed on no more perfect knowledge than mere belief, that such act will extend, or enhance, Our life; when such act is without penalty of ill effect upon the equal rights of others, or the health, safety, and welfare of the society in general.
4. Three Riddles.---Manifold are the problems suggested by the Eden-story (see EDEN; PARADISE). For instance, did the original story mention two trees, or only one, of which the fruit was taboo? bn iii. 3(cp. vv. 6, 11) only ``the tree in the midst of the garden'' is spoken of, but in ii. 9 and iii. 22 two trees are referred to, the fruit of both of which would appear to be taboo. To this we must add that in ii. 17 ``the tree of the knowledge of good and evil'' appears to have the qualities of a ``tree of life,'' except indeed to Adam. This passage seems to give us the key to the mystery. There was only one tree whose fruit was forbidden; it might be called either ``the tree of life'' or ``the tree of knowledge,'' but certainly not ``the tree of knowledge of good and evil.'' (8 ) The words ``life'' and ``knowledge'' (= ``wisdom'') are practically equivalent; perfect knowledge (so primitive man believed) would enable any being to escape death (an idea spiritualized in Prov. iii. 18 ). Next, which of the trees is the ``tree of life''? Various sacred trees were known to the Semitic peoples, such as the fig-tree (cp. iii. 7), which sometimes appears, conventionalized, as a sacred tree.(9) But clearly the tree referred to was more than a ``sacred tree''; it was a tree from whose fruit or juice, as culture advanced, some intoxicating drink was produced. The Gaokerena of the Iranians (10) is exactly parallel. At the resurrection, those who drink of the life-giving juice of this plant will obtain ``perfect welfare,'' including deathlessness. It is not, however, either from Iran or from India that the Hebrew tree of life is derived, but from Arabia and Babylonia, where date-wine (cp. Enoch xxiv. 4) is the earliest intoxicant. Of this drink it may well have been said in primitive times (cp. Rig Veda, ix. 90. 5, of Soma) that it ``cheers the heart of gods'' (in the speech of the vine, Judg. ix. 13). Later writers spoke of a ``tree of mercy,'' distilling the ``oil of life,'' (11) i.e. the oil that heals, but 4 Esdr. ii. 12 (cp. viii. 53) speaks of the ``tree of life,'' and Rev. xxii. 2 (virtually) of ``trees of life,'' whose leaves have a healing virtue (cp. Ezek. xlvii. 12). The oil-tree should doubtless be grouped with the river of oil in later writings (see PARADISE). Originally it was enough that there should be one tree of life, i.e. that heightened and preserved vitality. A third enigma---why no ``fountain of life''? The references to such a fountain in Proverbs (xiii. 14, &c.) prove that the idea was familiar,(12) and in Rev. xxii. 1 we are told that the river of Paradise was a ``river of water of life'' (see PARADISE). The serpent, too, in mythology is a regular symbol of water. Possibly the narrator, or redactor, desired to tone down the traces of mythology. Just as the Gathas (the ancient Zoroastrian hymns) omit Gaokerena, and the Hebrew prophets on the whole avoid mythological phrases, so this old Hebrew thinker prunes the primitive exuberance of the traditional myth. 5. The Serpent.---The keen-witted, fluently speaking serpent gives rise to fresh riddles. How comes it that Adam's ruin is effected by one of those very ``beasts of the field'' which he had but lately named (ii. 19), that in speech he is Adam's equal and in wisdom his superior? Is he a pale form of the Babylonian chaos-dragon, or of the serpent of Iranian mythology who sprang from heaven to earth to blight the ``good creation''? It is true that the serpent of Eden has mythological affinities. In iii. 14, 15, indeed, he is degraded into a mere typical snake, but iii. 1-5 shows that he was not so originally. He is perhaps best regarded, in the light of Arabian folk-lore, as the manifestation of a demon residing in the tree with the magic fruit.(13) He may have been a prince among the demons, as the magic tree was a prince among the plants. Hence perhaps his strange boldness. For some unknown reason he was ill disposed towards Yahweh Elohim (See iii. 3b), which has suggested to some that he may be akin to the great enemy of Creation. To Adam and Eve, however, he is not unkind. He bids them raise themselves in the scale of being by eating the forbidden fruit, which he declares to be not fatal to life but an opener of the eyes, and capable of equalizing men with gods (iii. 4, 5). To the phrase ``ye shall be as gods'' a later writer may have added ``knowing good and evil,'' but ``to be as gods'' originally meant ``to live the life of gods--wise, powerful, happy.'' The serpent was in the main right, but there is one point which he did not mention, viz. that for any being to retain this intensified vitality the eating of the fruit would have to be constantly renewed. Only thus could even the gods escape death.(14 )
AUTHORITIES --------- NOTES (from above) (10.) Gaokerena is the mythic white haoma plant (Zendavesta, Vendidad, xx. 4; Bundahish, xxvii. 4). It is an idealization of the yellow haoma of the mountains which was used in sacrifices (Yasna, x. 6-10). It corresponds to the soma plant Asclepias acida of the ancient Aryans of India. On the illustrative value of Gaokerena see Cheyne, Origin of the Psalter, pp. 400-439.
(11.) See Life of Adam and Eve (apocryphal), sec. sec. 36, 40; Apocal. Mos. sec. 9; Secrets of Enoch, viii. 7, xxii. 8, 9. ``Oil of life,'' in a Bab. hymn, Die Keilinschriften und das Alte Testament, ed. 3, p. 526.
another metaphor that could be used to further our conclusions is a phrase that is common knowledge to the horse fancy. The Arabs called their horses 'Drinkers of the wind'. Very poetic, and another tidbit of information that would make more sense of the phrases where people are called to "Drink from my cup" Dan, i'm not sure if this is the most appropriate place for this, feel free to move it to a better location!