Ancient Voices, Future Destinies
is a predestination doctrine known as the Two Spirit Theology,
in which one's soul is said to be fated for all eternity, blessed
or cursed as the result of a kind of angelic wrestling match between
two of the 'Watcher' spirits: ... a Good Angel and an Evil Angel,
who struggle for possession of your soul..."
Flusser Israeli Biblical Scholar Commenting
on Dead Sea Scrolls
Enoch's "The Testament of Amram" Dead Sea Scrolls
Translated by Prof. Robert Eisenman
Enoch: "I saw Watchers in my vision, the dream-vision. Two
men were fighting over me ... holding a great contest over me.
I asked them, 'Who are you, that you are thus empowered over me?'
They answered, 'We have been empowered and rule over all mankind.'
They said to me, 'Which of us do you choose to rule you?' I raised
my eyes and looked. One of them was terrifying in his appearance,
like a serpent, his cloak, many-colored yet very dark. ... And
I looked again, and in his appearance, his visage like a viper.
... I replied to him, 'This Watcher, who is he?' He answered,
'This Watcher ... his three names are Belial and Prince of Darkness
and King of Evil.' I said (to the other Watcher), 'My lord, what
dominion (have you?)' He answered, 'You saw (the viper), and he
is empowered over all Darkness, while I (am empowered over all
Light.) ... My three names are Michael, Prince of Light and King
Incas in Peru use that name for a glacier that caps a 22,400 foot
peak in the Andes. The name loosely translates as "star" and "snow."
The stars are the Pleiades, a cluster of blue suns which the Incas
believe have long watched over and judged them with a ruling hand.
glacial snow, according to legend, is where heaven and earth meet.
It melts and puts water into the ground to grow plants which feed
bodies and babies, an endless cycle of transformation from life
to life, mineral to earth to plant to body, sex, birth, death. Inside
that sacred snow, the Apu gods reside. Climbing Koyllur Riti is
a yearly ritual for several Inca tribes, a penance in exchange for
redemption and renewal from the Apu while the overseeing Pleiades
sink below the horizon in the June procession of the heavens.
was there in 1987 and share the trip now with Future Link because
Koyllur Riti, like the Dead Sea Scrolls, links ancient voices to
future destinies. First, I traveled from Cuzco by van. We drove
the first day on bumpy, dusty roads through brown hills where llamas
tiptoed along the steep slopes. As we got higher, the dark hills
receded below huge, white Andean peaks. The camp site was above
14,000 feet and the temperature that night was below freezing. We
all gathered in the cook tent to drink tea and wait for hot food.
After dinner, in spite of the bitter cold, the amateur astronomer
in me was drawn outdoors. No city lights, no noise, no Big Dipper,
no Orion's Belt. It was an alien sky dominated by the large Southern
Cross. Off to the right was a large triangle of stars. I stared
at them thinking how fresh and beautiful the strange constellations
were to my North American eyes. A bright light flashed from inside
the triangle. Satellite? I waited for the next flash. It came below
the first. Another white light flashed to the right. I realized
the flashes formed the corners of a triangle that fit neatly inside
the larger triangle of stars. I began moving toward the cook tent.
"You guys, the stars are moving out here!"
flashes erupted in a triangular sequence again, inside the constellation
triangle. I wanted to run to the tent and pull people out as witnesses,
but I could not take my eyes off that astonishing sky. Perhaps something
up there responded to my awe. The next action began inside the Southern
Cross. It was as if a large, unseen hand drew a perfectly straight
and bright, white line from the Cross to exactly the mid-point of
the triangle of stars. That long, white line stayed bright between
the two constellations for several seconds. Was something reading
my mind? Had my thoughts about the beauty of the sky provoked someone
to respond? Was the white line showing me that another intelligence
knew where my eyes and mind had been focused only minutes before?
next morning, dressed in arctic ski clothes, we mounted horses to
climb the remaining 8,000 feet. Mine was a big, black-haired, gentle
male. The road became a small path as the elevation increased. Children
in bare feet walked next to their mothers and fathers who wore only
sandals. The women were traditionally dressed in skirts and petticoats,
their legs bare. Some had walked more than two hundred miles. The
mountain path became frightening. A two-foot-wide ledge and the
horses' confidence were all that kept us from plunging into a deep
ravine to our left. I kept my eyes on the moving feet of a woman
and child in front of me. They had walked up behind our horses and
patiently worked themselves around the animals to our right on the
uphill side of the mountain. The woman was thin, a baby strapped
on her back. Her other child was probably four. I shivered inside
my parka, wondering how she and the children could stand the harsh
air. Penance, prayer, redemption. Thousands walked that cold and
horse stumbled once on a hair-pin turn, lunging forward toward a
child in front of me who never flinched. I closed my eyes in blind
faith, faith that life was meant to go on, faith that the horse
had good sense, faith in the power of the pilgrimage to the ice
of Koyllur Riti. The horse staggered against the hillside and kept
going. Several hours later we were at 22,000 feet near the summit
with four hundred feet of glacier above us. Every breath, I wanted
more air. A panic took over. I was going to suffocate. But we had
to get the tents up before sundown and numbing cold. Survival took
priority and work preoccupied our minds. But when we lay down to
rest, the panic took over again: air, more air!
could hear drummers. The steady, low-pitched pulse continued uninterrupted
over four days and nights as Inca tribesmen took turns to sustain
sundown, my breathing panic subsided and I walked toward the drums.
Thousands of Incas were now spread over the mountain. Only a few
of us were outsiders. I was there because I was curious and wanted
to experience ancient ritual. I was also there because I, too, wanted
redemption, wanted to touch the face of God and know the certainty
of His compassion in a universe that confused me with its harshness.
drumbeat was coming from a circle of men dressed in Inca costumes
near a large, gray stone church. The man-made structure on that
wild, open mountain seemed an intrusion. But my Inca companion explained
that in 1780, two boys were herding sheep near the glacier when
they saw a ball of light. They followed the light to an enormous
rock about fifteen feet high and wide. The children saw the light
surround the rock which then cracked. The boys were convinced it
was Christ himself in the light and ran to tell their parents. The
elders decided the large crack was Christ's mark. To protect the
miracle, the church was built and the large rock is the wall behind
first night as I reached a doorway, I could hear the voices of prayer.
Men, women and children were standing tightly together and moving
slowly forward to pass Christ's rock. Everyone was holding at least
one small, burning white candle; some had many candles wedged between
fingers in each hand. I slowly moved sideways through the crowd
determined to see the rock. In front of me, I heard sobbing voices.
Two women not much taller than four feet and wrinkled with age and
sun were looking up toward the Christ rock. Each of their hands
held four candles that were dripping hot wax onto their fingers.
As they cried, they spoke out loud. I asked a man near me if he
understood their pleas.
broken English, he translated: "Oh, dear Christ, we are so sorry
that you suffered for us. Please forgive us. May we suffer now,
I watched the agony in their faces, I felt a sting in my eyes. The
sting gave way to the pressure in my chest and tears.
Closer to the altar, I could see that the crack in the rock had
been augmented with gold paint. The artificial crown and body were
superfluous to the unquestioning faith in those human hearts.
cold air at the exit was suffocating again, but the scene before
me was not. Candles and campfires turned the mountain into a starry
sky. That sky continued into the black and white one above. Like
a perfect mirror image on a very calm lake, stars were above, below,
everywhere. There was no horizon.
moved outside along the church wall back toward the drumbeat. The
circle of men was larger, perhaps fifty feet across. In the middle,
one man was dressed as an "angel" with white paint on his face.
He raised a bullwhip high above his head. His target was another
Inca tribesman dressed as a "devil" a few yards away. The devil
also had a bullwhip. The two stalked each other slowly, cautiously.
Suddenly, both lashed out and stung each other's flesh. Over and
over, they whipped. Then the devil and angel embraced, backed away
into the circle and a new angel and devil began another round.
turned to my Inca friend. "Why didn't the angel win?"
laughed at my bias and answered, "If the positive and negative get
out of balance, the universe gets sick. The Incas believe that the
positive and the negative must always struggle with each other and
then embrace to keep the universe from falling apart."
Balance, he said, was the key to survival. Nothing was all good
or all bad. The universe was neutral, not harsh. Its creator dreamed,
observed and loved us all.
an open mind, he urged me. Days later, he said tears were not needed
for the fourteen women and babies who died from the cold during
that Koyllur Riti. The moment of death, he explained, was simply
a walk into the next room of the dream.
Riti gave me a different ear with which to listen to scientists
warn about diseased coral and marine life, disappearing rain forests
and dying species, rapidly melting glaciers, rising sea levels,
crop circles, and unusual animal deaths. When my frustrations are
too great over mindless or deliberate environmental destructions
or my fears deepen over humanity's hubris and potential doom, I
think of the Inca tribesmen painted as devils and angels. And I
remember their embrace after the painful whippings, an embrace of
opposites that ultimately sustains the whole.
years in my television, documentary, writing, radio and internet
work, I have reported facts about deteriorating Earth ecosystems
and polluted waters, lands and air. The pressure of facts, I thought,
could change the world just as drops of water falling in a cave
can build up stalactites and stalagmites bit by bit. But too many
times I saw how power and greed influenced decisions and laws, even
allowing raw uranium into the tap water of a Denver suburb.
earth and all earth life, including humans, are under great stress,
out of balance and sick. But as my Inca friend said, the tension
of the negative and positive struggling to stay in balance is the
essence of God's plan. Each one of us has to make choices about
which side we want to be on. as fence sitting does not seem appropriate
in the big scheme. The moment of death, ancient voices say, gives
birth to destinies based on the soul's growth and power, or stunted
growth and weakness, to determine choices.
my return from the domain of the Apu gods, I have been convinced
that a common source of energy pervades all there is and can be
an ally to living life. That energy, I think, moves in cycles like
the spiral below found carved in rock all over this planet. That
is why I used the spiral as my graphic motif throughout my two-volume
book, Glimpses of Other Realities. Part of the old symbol's meaning
is that the machinery of the universe involves the evolution of
souls. The spirals are not static and not two-dimensional. The symbol
is a slice. A larger reality can be imagined as a spiral upward
and downward through innumerable other frequencies or dimensions.
Ancient wisdom understood that the moment of death was simply a
transition into another frequency on the spiral. So all lines in
all directions are simultaneous and filled with life forms ebbing
and flowing, supported by a singular force, an invisible matrix
of energy from which everything emerges and to which everything
we are what we think, fear, love and do, then perhaps humanity will
finally, willfully, reject war and earth destruction and choose
to preserve and sustain all life as precious. My career boils down
to producing a stream of news and facts that articulates the potential
of life. If humanity is to survive a new cosmology must emerge based
on an understanding that the universe truly gives what it gets and
that human consciousness can contribute by positive will and choice
to its spiraling evolution.
Linda's monthly feature in the Pathfinders segment of our website.
Click to access: Pathfinders/Future
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