Yesterday was the "super Moon" event - as I understand it, the Moon happened to be a point in its rotation around the Earth closest to it and this coincided with the "full" Moon, making the Moon look super-large and particularly close in the skies in the northern hemisphere last night. I happened to see this breathtaking photograph at Xinunet while I was checking out a story on the upcoming excavation of an ancient Shang Dynasty capital.
What struck me was the juxtoposition of the lunar crescent on the top of a mosque against the full Moon Goddess in all of her glory rising above Rotterdam in The Netherlands! A truly international symbol as well as an international event published in international news coverage. How connected we have become. If only we would remember that underneath our different skin colors and cultures, we're all the same, too.
Does that crescent symbol look familiar to you? It sure does to me...
Above is one of the sides of the incredibly beautiful and ancient Narmer Palette from pre-dynastic Egypt, although some historians call it Dynasty Zero. Zero because it was right around the time Narmer was united Upper and Lower Egypt into one kingdom. Check out Hat-hert a/k/a Hathor, the cow/lunar goddess, who was later turned into a daughter of the Sun god, Re, and became a solar goddess. But her first, and most ancient, association is with the Moon, and in some depictions of Hat-hert and later, Isis, she wears the "horns" of the Moon (a/k/a cow horns) enclosing the sacred solar disc. Hat-hert also prominently appears on the reverse side of the Narmer Palette. The Palette's antiquity is attested to by the fact that Hat-hert is depicted in her original cow form. In later incarnations during her long herstory in ancient Egypt, Hat-hert was depicted as a woman with cow-ears, and still later, as a woman wearing a "crown" of cow horns.
Here is a much later depiction of the lunar crescent worn as a crown by this beautifully formed alabaster goddess who "may" be Ishtar (Astarte), from a "necropolis of Hillah, near Babylon" with a 400 year swing date of 2nd Century BCE or CE, at the Lourve (photo from Wikipedia Commons):
At Carthage, the Moon goddess was worshipped as the fearsome Tanit, sometimes depicted with a lion's head (Hat-Hert was sometimes transformed into a lioness to wreak destruction upon sinning Egyptians, harking back to predynastic depictions of Hat-Hert as a warrior goddess:
Tanit, to whom infants and young children were sacrificed by the CARthiginians (CAR is another archaic Moon goddess, whose worship is found in ancient place-names, I've written about her, too) is said to be an incarnation of Astarte:
The photo above is from Wikipedia Commons. Do you see a resemblance between this form of the Goddess and the ancient Egyptian "ankh" symbol? I also couldn't help but notice that in this depiction of a lunar goddess, the crescent Moon is "inverted" over the Goddess' head and I was much struck by its resemblance to some depictions I've seen of doves, so often associated with the Roman Catholic Mother of God, the Virgin Mary. Periodically in modern-era Egypt (prior to the Islamists taking over the government after the overthrow of Mubarak), thousand of people attested to seeing the Virgin Mary appearing in the skies above Coptic Christian churches, often surrounded by "doves." I've written about some of these apparitions of the Virgin Mary.
If you're interested in learning more, please check out:
July 2, 2009: The True Origins of the Koran (formatting is screwed up on this post, and many of my older posts, due to various changes that Google Blogger has gone through since the founding of this blog. I hope you will take the time to slog through it despite no paragraph breaks!)
April 15, 2008: Goddess Tanit.
July 4, 2008: The Goddess of the Moon.
Did you know that the Moon Goddess has an intimate connection with Chinese Xiang'qi and the even older "pre-chess" game of Xiang'xi? Oh yeah, if you read herstory between the lines, sometimes one can discern the truth. Please check out my post from October 27, 2007: The Chinese Moon Goddess and Chess.
And if you would like to read more about some of the Virgin Mary apparitions:
August 24, 2007: Goddess Sighting: Our Lady of Guadalupe (check out the nice crescent Moon the Our Lady is standing upon)
Our Lady of Zeitoun, from Wikipedia (I'm sure I posted about this and other Virgin Mary apparitions occurring in Egypt, but right now I cannot find them in my blog and I don't have time to hunt and peck at the moment)
At Tour Egypt: Egypt: Egypt's 1960's Remarkable Virgin Mary Sightings, Egypt
Check out the "dove" above the "Virgin Mary" figure -- does it remind you of the crescent Moon depiction in the ancient stone carving above Tanit's head at Carthage (above):
She reappeared again in 2009, at a different location, but this time the birds around here were described as a swirl of pigeons and the Goddess had been reduced to appearing as an amorphous "flash of light." Well, maybe. Depends who you talked to when it happened... Such things, after all, are in the eye of the beholder:
December 15, 2009: EGYPT: Is it the Virgin Mary or just a curious flash of light?
For my part, I think the Mother has been, and is still trying, desperately, to reach out to us, but we're just not getting Her message. Beware when she returns as Kali or Car. And those in the know won't be able to say we weren't warned.