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Snake Cults. 67,000 B.C.E. – Botswana, Africa. World’s oldest ritual discovered. Worshipped the python 70,000 years ago SACRIFIED TO THE PYTHON:

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67,000 B.C.E. – Botswana, Africa

World’s oldest ritual discovered. Worshipped the python 70,000 years ago

SACRIFIED TO THE PYTHON:

The world’s oldest ritual ceremonies are twice as old as previously thought. More than 70,000 years ago in a small cave in Botswana, humans sacrificed spearheads to the python.

A new archaeological find in Botswana shows that our ancestors in Africa engaged in ritual practice 70,000 years ago — 30,000 years earlier than the oldest finds in Europe. This sensational discovery strengthens Africa’s position as the cradle of modern man.

Associate Professor Sheila Coulson, from the University of Oslo, can now show that modern humans, Homo sapiens, have performed advanced rituals in Africa for 70,000 years. She has, in other words, discovered mankind’s oldest known ritual.

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3000 B.C.E - Egypt

  • 5,000-year-old Semitic text dealing with magical spells and snakes has been deciphered from an ancient Egyptian pyramid inscription, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem announced Monday.
  • These serpent spells, written in hieroglyphic characters and discovered in an Egyptian pyramid, are the earliest continuous Semitic texts to have been deciphered.
  • The texts, which were first discovered a century ago in a 24th Century BCE Egyptian pyramid, are the earliest continuous Semitic texts ever to have been deciphered, said Semitic languages Prof. Richard Steiner of New York's Yeshiva University in a premiere presentation at the Hebrew University.
  • The passages, serpent spells written in hieroglyphic characters, are estimated to have been written between the 25th to the 30th centuries BCE.
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2,100 B.C.E – Lagash (Babylon)

2100 B.C.E. -

This famous green steatite vase was carved for king Gudea of Lagash (dated variously 2200& 2025 BCE), dedicated by its inscription to Ningizzida, "Lord of the Tree of Truth" which bears a relief of serpents twined round a staff"

The drawing above is from the internet and shows the image of the vase "rolled out".

tiamat marduk
Tiamat & Marduk

Marduk , the god of Babylonian society, defeated the great serpent Tiamat

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Naga

the great snake that sheltered Siddhartha from the rain

1,100 C.E. – Cambodia India

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1,600 B.C.E. - Snake veneration in Crete

  • Seen in the form of the snake goddess statues found at Knossos dating to the 17th century BC, as well as, for example, earrings, such as the one showing a double-headed, earth encircling serpent.
medusa gorgon
Medusa / Gorgon
  • Arguably the most indelible image of snakes in mythology, Medusa means "sovereign female wisdom," in Sanskrit. Medusa was actually imported into Greece from Libya. Medusa was the destroyer aspect of the Great Triple Goddess also called Neith, Anath, Athene or Ath-enna in North Africa and Athana in 1400 c. BC Minoan Crete. Medusa was originally an aspect of the goddess Athena from Libya where she was the Serpent-Goddess of the Libya (Amazons). In her images, her hair sometimes resembles dread locks, showing her origins in Africa.
athena
Athena
  • The goddess of wisdom and strategy, Athena is often depicted wearing the Aegis of Zeus, which was fashioned from the head of Medusa.

Images are from 600 - 500 BCE

apollo
Apollo
  • The Greek god most closely associated with snake worship is Apollo; the original name of Apollo's temple at Delphi was Pytho, after the snake Python . Apollo killed the snake when he came there, and took it over . This may actually be the origin of the story of the gorgons.
  • Apollo was the god of prophesy and knowledge, and the snake, therefore became a natural symbol for him.
aesculapius
Aesculapius
  • The Greek God of Medicine was the son of Apollo. He is typically depicted as having a staff with a snake wound around it.
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The Staff of Aesclapius

Many believe that the Aesclapius staff (left) represents the healer’s ability to rid the patient of the guinea worm by rolling the parasite out of the body attached to a stick, each day rolling a little more out. A symbol of medicine for thousands of years, it was replaced by the Caduseus when the army Medical Corp. adopted it as its official emblem in 1905.

Caduseus

The Caduseus was the staff of Hermes, and was derived from the “tree of life / truth” image

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Nehushtandepicted as a bronze snake wrapped around a staff, it was said to have been used by Moses to cure the Israelites of their snake bites. The Mormon religion speaks of it as wrapped around the tree of life, and that it has the power to heal. Some Christian religions have claimed that the tree of life was used to make the cross on which Jesus was crucified.

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Macedonia 375-316 BCE

Olympias, the mother of Alexander the Great, was said to have conceived of the great ruler after laying with a snake. The famous historian Plutarch writes:

“And Philip, some time after he was married, dreamt that he sealed up his wife's body with a seal, whose impression, as be fancied, was the figure of a lion. Aristander of Telmessus, considering how unusual it was to seal up anything that was empty, assured him the meaning of his dream was that the queen was with child of a boy, who would one day prove as stout and courageous as a lion. Once, moreover, a serpent was found lying by Olympias as she slept, which more than anything else, it is said, abated Philip's passion for her; and whether he feared her as an enchantress, or thought she had commerce with some god, and so looked on himself as excluded, he was ever after less fond of her conversation…”

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Greece 120 B.C.E.

  • Glykon
  • The cult of the snake god Glykon was introduced in in the mid-second century CE by the Greek prophet Alexander of Abonutichus.
  • The cult -or at least the snake Alexander venerated- originated in Macedonia, where similar snake cults were already known in the fourth century BCE.
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OuroborosThe serpent or dragon eating its own tail has survived from antiquity and can be traced back to Ancient Egypt, circa 1600 B.C.E. From there it passed to Phoenicia and then to the Greek philosophers, who gave it the name Ouroboros ("the tail-devourer").

First Fruits of the Earth Offered to SaturnGiorgio Vasari (Italian, 1511–1574)