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45921The Mission of Rama

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  • elfuncle
    Nov 30, 2010
      THE GREAT INITIATES

      A Study of the Secret History of Religions


      BY ÉDOUARD SCHURÉ


      RAMA

      2


      The Mission of Rama

      Four or five thousand years before our time, dense forest still covered ancient Scythia, which extended from the Atlantic Ocean to the Arctic Seas. This continent, which the black men had seen develop island by island, they called, "land emerging from the waves." How this land contrasted with their white soil, bleached by the sun, this Europe of green coasts, with humid, deeply indented bays, of dreamy rivers, somber lakes, and of mists, forever clinging to the sides of its mountains! On the grassy, uncultivated plains, vast like the pampas, one heard nothing but the call of deer, the roaring of buffalo and the gallop of the great herds of wild horses, shaking their manes in the wind. The white man who lived in the forests of ancient Scythia was no longer a cave man. Already he could call himself master of this land. He had invented flint knives and hatchets, bow and arrow, sling and bowstring. Finally he had found two battle companions, two excellent, incomparable, lifelong friends: the dog and the horse. The domesticated dog, having become the faithful guardian of his forest home, gave a sense of security to his house. In taming the horse, man had conquered the land and subjugated the other animals; he had become the king of space. Mounted on wild horses, these sandy-haired men rode like the lightning. They killed the bear, the wolf, the aurochs and frightened the panther and the lion who lived in our forests at that time.

      Civilization had begun; the embryonic family, the clan and the tribe existed. Everywhere the Scythians, sons of the Hyperboreans, erected huge menhirs to their ancestors.

      When a leader died, his arms and horse were buried with him so that, it was said, the warrior could ride across the clouds and chase the dragon of fire in the other world. Hence the custom of sacrificing the horse, which plays such an important role in the Vedas and among the Scandinavians. Religion thus began in the worship of ancestors.

      The Semites found the one God, the universal Spirit, in the desert, on the mountain tops, in the immensity of stellar space. The Scythians and the Celts found their gods in the form of many spirits, in the heart of their forests. There they heard voices; there they experienced the first thrills of the Unseen, visions of the great Beyond. This is why the forest -- delightful or dreadful -- has remained dear to the white race. Charmed by the music of the leaves and the magic of the moon, in the course of the ages, men always return to it as to a fountain of youth, the temple of the great mother Hertha. There sleep men's gods, their loves, their lost Mysteries.

      From the most remote times, visionary women prophesied under trees. Each tribe had its great prophetess, like the Voluspa of the Scandinavians, with her school of Druidesses. But these women, at first nobly inspired, became ambitious and cruel. The good prophetesses changed into evil magicians. They instituted human sacrifices, and the blood of their Herôlls flowed continuously over the dolmens, to the sinister chants of the priests and the approving shouts of the ferocious Scythians.

      Among these priests was a young man in the prime of life; his name was Ram. Though he had been destined for the priesthood, his contemplative soul and penetrating mind rebelled against this bloody cult.

      The young Druid was gentle and serious. Early in life he had shown remarkable knowledge of plants, their marvelous powers, the distilling and preparation of their juices, as well as the study of stars and their forces. He seemed to divine, to see far-off things. Hence his premature authority over the older Druids. A kindly greatness emanated from his words and his being. His wisdom contrasted with the madness of the Druidesses, those screechers of curses who pronounced their inauspicious oracles during convulsions of delirium. The Druids had called him "the one who knows," and the people called him "the inspired one of peace."

      Nevertheless, Ram, striving after divine science, had travelled over all of Scythia and the southern countries. Fascinated by his personal knowledge and his modesty, the priests of the black men had revealed a part of their secret knowledge to him. When he returned to the northern country, Ram was frightened at seeing the cult of human sacrifices increasing more and more among his people. He saw in it the ruin of his race. But how could he fight this custom propagated by the arrogance of the Druidesses, the ambition of the Druids, and the superstition of the people? Then another calamity befell the white men, and Ram thought he saw in it heaven's punishment of the sacrilegious cult. From their expeditions into the southern countries and from their contact with the black men, the white men had brought back a terrible disease, a kind of plague. It infected men through the bloodstream, through the sources of life. The entire body became covered with black spots. The breath became foul, the swollen limbs, eaten by ulcers, became deformed, and the sick person died in excruciating pain. The breath of the living and the smell of the dead spread the plague widely. And white men, stupefied, fell and died by the thousands in their forests, abandoned even by birds of prey.

      Deeply sorrowful, Ram vainly looked for a means of salvation.

      He was in the habit of meditating under an oak tree in a glade. One evening, during which he had pondered for a long time over the evils of his race, he fell asleep at the foot of the tree. In his sleep it seemed to him that a loud voice was calling him by name, and he thought he awakened. Then he saw before him a man of majestic height, clothed like himself in the white robe of the Druids. He carried a rod, around which a snake was coiled. The astonished Ram was about to ask the stranger what it meant, but the latter, taking him by the hand, made him stand up and showed him a beautiful branch of mistletoe on the very tree at the foot of which he had been resting. "O Ram!" he said, "There is the remedy you seek." Then he took from his breast a little gold pruning knife, cut the branch, and gave it to him. He murmured a few words about the way to prepare the mistletoe, and disappeared.

      Then Ram awakened fully, feeling very deeply comforted. An inner voice told him that he had found salvation. He prepared the mistletoe according to the instructions of the divine friend with the golden sickle. Then he made a sick man drink this brew in a fermented liquor, and the patient was cured. The marvelous healings he brought about made Ram famous in all Scythia. He was summoned everywhere for healing work. When consulted by the Druids of his tribe, he shared his discovery with them, adding that it must remain the secret of the priestly caste in order to insure its power. Ram's disciples, traveling over all Scythia with branches of mistletoe, were considered divine messengers and their master a demigod.

      This event marked the origin of a new cult. From this time on, the mistletoe became a sacred plant. Ram perpetuated its fame by instituting the holiday of Noel, or of the new salvation, which he placed at the beginning of the year, calling it the Night Mother of the universe, or of the great renewal. As for the mysterious being whom Ram had seen in a dream and who had shown him the mistletoe, in the esoteric tradition of the white men of Europe he is called Aesc-heyl-hopa, which means "hope for salvation is in the forests." The Greeks called him Aesculapius, the genius of medicine who holds the magic rod in the form of a caduceus.

      Nevertheless, Ram, "the inspired one of peace," had broader plans. He wanted to cure his people of a moral wound more disastrous than the plague. Chosen chief of the priests of his tribe, he issued an order that all the schools of the Druids and Druidesses were to stop making human sacrifices. This news spread to the ocean, hailed as a joyful event by some, as an outrageous sacrilege by others. Their power threatened, the Druidesses began to scream curses upon the presumptuous man, to hurl death sentences against him. Many Druids who saw in human sacrifices their only means of power, joined them. Ram, extolled by a large group, was hated by others. But rather than withdraw from the battle, he aggravated it by establishing a new symbol.

      At that time each white tribe had its rallying sign in the form of an animal which symbolized its chosen qualities. Some of the chiefs nailed cranes, eagles or vultures to the framework of their wooden houses; others, the heads of wild boars or buffalo. This is the origin of the coat-of-arms. But the chosen emblem of the Scythians was the bull, which they called Thor, the sign of brute force and violence. Ram took the figure of the ram, the courageous, peaceful leader of the flock, in place of the bull, and made it the rallying sign of his followers. This emblem, established in the midst of Scythia, became the signal for a great clamor and an actual revolution in men's thought. The white people divided into two camps. The very soul of the white race was split in half, in order to free itself from animality, so that it might climb the first step of the invisible sanctuary which leads to divine mankind. "Death to the Ram!" shouted Thor's supporters. "War on the Bull!" shouted Ram's friends. A fearful war was imminent.

      In the face of this threat, Ram hesitated. If war were let loose, would this not intensify the evil and force his race to destroy itself? At this moment he had another dream.

      The stormy heaven was filled with dark clouds which swept over the mountains and moved above the bending trees of the forest. Standing on a rock, a wild-haired woman was about to strike a fine warrior who was tied before her. "In the name of the ancestors, Stop!" shouted Ram, throwing himself upon the woman. The Druidess, threatening her adversary, gave Ram a look as piercing as the blade of a knife. But the thunder rolled in the thick clouds, and amidst a flash of lightning a dazzling figure appeared. The forest paled before it. The Druidess fell as if thunderstruck, and the bonds of the captive having been broken, he looked at the shining giant with a gesture of defiance. Ram did not tremble, for in the features of the apparition he recognized the divine being who had already spoken to him beneath the oak tree. This time he appeared more beautiful, for his entire body shone with light. And Ram saw that he was in an open temple with broad columns. In the place of the sacrificial stone, an altar was raised. Nearby stood the warrior whose eyes still feared death. The woman lying on the flagstones, appeared to be dead. And now the heavenly genius carried a torch in his right hand; in his left hand was a cup. He smiled benevolently, saying, "Ram, I am pleased with you. Do you see this torch? It is the sacred fire of the divine Spirit. Do you see this cup? It is the cup of Life and Love. Give the torch to the man, the cup to the woman." Ram did as his genius commanded him. Hardly was the torch in the man's hand and the cup in the woman's, than the fire lighted of itself on the altar, and both shone transfigured in the light, like the divine husband and wife. At the same time the temple grew larger; its columns mounted to heaven; its vault became the firmament. Then, carried by his dream, Ram saw himself borne to the top of a mountain under the starry sky. Standing near him, his genius explained the meaning of the constellations, and in the flaming signs of the zodiac Ram read the destinies of mankind.

      "Wonderful spirit, who are you?" Ram asked the genius. And the genius replied, "I am called Deva Nahusha, divine Intelligence. You will spread my light over the earth, and I shall always come at your call. Now, be on your way. Go!" And with his hand, the genius pointed toward the East.

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