re: Hamlet's Mill
I don't know if you have seen this one already, but it is a Channel 4
production about the work Dr. Sullivan who set out to use the Incas in the
Andes as a "test case" for Hamlet's Mill.
Twelve web pages beginning here:
I have been re-reading parts of Hamlet's Mill. While I contest strongly the
meandering way of expressing themselves, I admire that they took up the
unenviable task of compiling as many myths, stories and poems they could
find that support cosmological readings.
"But obviously there is more, and what emerges here lifts the veil of a
fundamental archaic design. The real actors on the stage of the universe
are very few, if their adventures are many. The most "ancient treasure"--in
Aristotle's word--that was left to us by our predecessors of the High and
Far-Off Times was the idea that the gods are really stars, and that there
are no others. The forces reside in the starry heavens, and all the
stories, characters and adventures narrated by mythology concentrate on the
active powers among the stars, who are the planets. A prodigious assignment
it may seem for those few planets to account for all those stories and also
to run the affairs of the whole universe. What, abstractly, might be for
modern men the various motions of those points over the dial became, in
times without writing, where all was entrusted to images and memory, the
Great Game played over the aeons [sic], a never-ending tale of positions and
relations, starting from an assigned Time Zero, a complex web of encounters,
drama, mating and conflict." (Hamlet's Mill, p. 177.)
Reading the first part of this, one is left wondering, "yes, yes--how true".
But the end, in my case, is always "no, no, too far". That is my take on
Hamlet's Mill: a yes, a no, a maybe, a question mark. It is a disturbing
book because it teases you with puzzles that are poorly written.
In the case of Graham Hancock it is so much easier to see: he writes
fiction! But with Hamlet's Mill, well, is the connection they are trying to
make there, or isn't it?
Have you looked into Saturn as Father Time (with a staff) and the Grim
Reaper (with scythe)? But be forewarned: while Channel 4 and Dan Norder
both argue a connection between these, thinking critically about it, there
is no real reason to connect them. It just "feels right", which I suspect
is what much of Hamlet's Mill is on about.
The stars, oh the stars. How they spin their stories around us. Or is it
the other way around?
- I am attaching an email that came to me on my lavender
list.... and thought maybe someone on this list might
have some information.
From: "John MacGregor" <jonivy@...> |
Date: Fri, 04 Jul 2003 13:58:48 -0700
Subject: Re: [Lavandula] Experts on lavender in Old
on 7/4/03 9:44 AM, Susan Robins at
> I had a caller who is writing a novel that takesplace during the time of
> the Old Testament, and would like e-mail contactwith lavender historians.
Way back in 1874, J. Smith speculated that the
reference to spices ("roshay
besamim") in Song of Solomon 5:1 might suggest that
Solomon "had in his
gardens at Etham all kinds of sweet-smelling plants
common to Palaestine, as
also those of South Europe, such as lavender,
rosemary, sage, thyme, savory,
marjoram, etc." [Quoted by Molden & Moldenke, p. 52].
But this is a very
Eurocentric idea of someone with very little knowledge
of the botany of the
The sweet-smelling lavenders we know--especially
Lavandula angustifolia and
L. latifolia and their hybrids--are native to the
mountains of southern
Europe., and it is highly unlikely that they had
reached the Holy Land by
the eighth century B. C.
Michael Zohary (p. 35) notes that (unspecified)
"species of lavender
(Lavendula) [sic.]"... are among the "many tropical
annuals and perennials
that grow in wadi beds, rock crevices , and other
sites" of the Jordan and
Aravah Valleys. But the fragrance of the species
native to the region (L.
stoechas, L. coronopifolia, L. pubescens, etc.) have
"medicinal" aromas that
could hardly be compared with the "sweet" spices like
frankincense, myrrh, spikenard, and the other incense
used in Biblical times.
I can find not one single modern authority that
suggests any word in the Old
Testament refers to any kind of lavender.
It is my opinion that any reference to "lavender" in a
novel set in Old
Testament times would be a blatant anachronism.
John MacGregor, List Owner
South Pasadena, CA 91030 USA
USDA zone 9 Sunset zones 21/23
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