June 11th, 2010, 01:43 AM
The black stone of kaabah=Cybele?
I was wondering if anyone had any information of reputable sources for the idea that the black stone in the Kaaba, is an meterorite/tektite that was originally worshiped as the goddess Cybele? Astro-space cults are pretty common in the pre-Abrahamic Near East, and I think this idea is fascinating....
According to wikipedia:
"The reverence of the Black Stone evidently preceded the rise of Islam. The Semitic cultures of the Middle East had a tradition of using unusual stones to mark places of worship, a phenomenon which is reflected in the Hebrew Bible as well as the Qur'an.
Grunebaum, in Classical Islam, says that the Kaaba was a place of pilgrimage even in pre-Islamic times, and was probably the only sanctuary built of stone, but that there are other sources which indicate there were other "Kaaba" structures in other parts of Arabia. A "red stone" was the deity of the south Arabian city of Ghaiman, and there was a "white stone" in the Ka'ba of al-Abalat (near the city of Tabala, south of Mecca). He points out that the experience of divinity of that time period was often associated with stone fetishes, mountains, special rock formations, or "trees of strange growth.""
According to crystallinks.com:
"The stone associated with Cybele's worship was, originally, probably at Pessinus but perhaps at Pergamum or on Mount Ida. What is certain is that in 204 BCE it was taken to Rome, where Cybele became 'Mother' to the Romans. The ecstatic rites of her worship were alien to the Roman temperament, but nevertheless animated the streets of their city during the annual procession of the goddess's statue. Alongside Isis, Cybele retained prominence in the heart of the Empire until the fifth century BCE - when the stone was then lost. Her cult prospered throughout the Empire and it is said that every town or village remained true to the worship of Cybele. "
// Something else i find interesting about this is the that Islamic calender is a Lunar one. The same with Judaism. Christianity(and secularized Western nations who have inherited Judeo-Christian intellectual history) use the Gregorian solar calender due to being co-opted by the Roman Empire back in 311.
here's a wiki on the Islamic calender, which also mentions the pre-islamic calender which was also believed to be Lunar: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_calendar -
I also wanted to include this depiction of Cybele...Notice the crescent Moon and Star in this pic. and compare it to the classic symbol of Islam:
June 12th, 2010, 09:51 AM
Was the Kaba of Mecca originally a shrine to Vishnu?
As you know, it is very difficult to discover anything about the history of Arabia pre Islamic times as the Moslems did their level best to destroy all the evidence of any other culture. However, Indian historians have done a pretty good job at spying out evidence of Sanskrit and Vedic practises among the remnants left to us and make a pretty good case for the Kaba being originally a Vishnu shrine.
But to go back to the beginning …. Arabia at the time that Mohammed was born was called Arvasthan, which, translated into Sanskrit, means Land of Horses. Of course, even today, some of the best race horses come from Arabia and there are several high profile Arab horse owners at international race meets.
It is said that Mohammed ordered the removal from the Kaba of 360 ‘non-Christian’ images. With 360 being a sacred geometry number, I think that’s probably correct. Some Vedic historians think that one of those images was of Lord Shiva, who also has a crescent moon, and that the Kaba was originally a shiva lingam. Shiva temples in India often have a crescent moon on top and the custom of circumambulating a sacred shrine is an Indian custom too. Lord Shiva is also known as Makkhesvar, which could be where the name Mecca comes from.
From research by Airavata dasa in Bhakti-yoga and Islam, we learn that pre-Muslim people believed in gods and goddesses in the usual shamanic way, with each of them representing natural forces or elements. So the “Goddess of Fortune” (the Vedic Lakshmi) was the consort of Allah and named Al-Manat (notice how ‘ma’ is often the root word, worldwide, for the female element) and Al-Lat was the sky goddess and Al-Uzza was Venus. Both the sun and the moon were also represented by deities.
In Origines by Sir W. Drummon (Volumes III and IV) we learn that one of the images in the original Kaba was a bird. The bird, as I’m sure you know, was a very popular god worldwide, in the form of an ibis (Thoth, Egyptian) or eagle (Garuda, Indian) etc. Other deities of the pre-Muslim and thus probably in the pre-Mohammed Kaba were Bag, Kabar, Dsu al Chalasat (female), Madan, Saad and Sair.
But that these were Arabian versions of Vedic gods could be supported by a poem written by Mohammed’s uncle, Umar bin-e Hassham, who was said to be a staunch devotee of Lord Shiva.
The man who may spend his life in sin
And irreligion or waste it in lechery and wrath
If at least he relent and return to
Righteousness, can he be saved?
If but once he worship Mahadeva with a pure
Heart, he will attain the ultimate in spirituality.
Oh Lord Shiva, exchange my entire life for but
A day’s sojourn in India where on attains salvation.
But one pilgrimage there secures for one and all
Merit and company of the truly great.
Stephen Knapp, in his book Proof of Vedic Culture’s Global Existence, says that the name ‘Kaba’ comes from the Sanskrit Garbha Graha which was shortened to Gabha. This refers to the sanctum of the temple in India.
However, PJ Oak makes an interesting point in his book World Vedic Heritage:
“The general belief that the Kaba is only a Shiva temple is not true. It originated as a Vedic shrine depicting the Vedic version of the creation with a reclining Vishnu’s navel forming the centre of the cosmic theme. Vishnu was surrounded by a whole pantheon of Vedic gods. Mohammed destroyed them all. The Shiva-linga stone wrenched away from its base was retained as a sacred symbol because it was the special patron and faceless deity of Mohammed’s Kuru-ishi household. He was a Shaivite [devotee of Shiva ~ Ish]. That's why those insisting that the caliphate remain in his family are known as Shaivas, now called Shias (Shiites). ..
“An entire ancient Sanskrit scripture known as the Harihareshwar Mahatmya has a couplet which mentions Lord Vishnu’s holy footprint to be at three main centres in the world, namely Gaya (India), the other in Mecca and the third in Shukla Teertha.”
And of course, Mecca is also known as Haran, which could be after Lord Hari or Vishnu.
June 12th, 2010, 11:38 AM
Re: The black stone of kaabah=Cybele?
The reference to "stones" being revered in ancient times could have included the "Ben Ben" stone of ancient Egypt, revered as the stone on which the first giant heron (another reference to birds) sat and proclaimed with a loud call that the world had come to be. It is thought that the Ben Ben stone may have been a meteorite that was discovered in the desert and housed at Iunu, the ancient name for Heliopolis. The Ben Ben stone may also have been the model for the capstones of the pyramids.
June 12th, 2010, 12:28 PM
Re: The black stone of kaabah=Cybele?
Welcome, Anthony, and thanks for that first very interesting post. It's going to be great having an expert on Egypt on the Gate. I'll be PMing you later for some advice in that area.
June 12th, 2010, 05:03 PM
Re: The black stone of kaabah=Cybele?
How do we even know that it is black?
When did that curtain go up and do they ever drop it or open it?
I am thinking of one of the best screen lines ever…
“Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain!”