Isaac Ben Jacob

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Where does the religious and ritual character of these experiments come from?

So, we see that researches on mental manipulation funded under the framework of project MK Ultra are actually practical applications of induced schizophrenia. They are inseparable from "religion," from the notion of life and death and from the experience at the borders of Hades which has everything to do with the myth of Orpheus. One question remains unanswered however: where does the religious and ritual character of these experiments come from, and where does the idea to use schizophrenia and incest for mind control originate? This protocol cannot come from Judaism, which forbids such sexual abuse, nor from Christianity, nor even from Greek philosophy, because Socrates, Plato and Xenophon condemn incest as "an impious act, hated by the gods, the stigma of shame" (quote from Plato in "The Laws", the last of his "Dialogues"). Xenophon had already expressed this point, and he left us with a trail to reflect on. Having travelled in Persia, he had noticed that "the Magi (the Chaldeans) practiced incest to honor the deity and procreate the High Priests" (note 12).

Without going into the intricacies of history, we need to specify that the religion of these Chaldean Magi, which was renamed "Manichaeism" at the advent of Christianity, focused primarily on reincarnation and ritual incest. It spread to Europe through the intermediary of two sects whose existence is well documented: Bogomilism and Paulicianism.

Both wended their way through the Slavic countries, from Ukraine to Poland via Bulgaria, a communist doctrine, collectivist and incestuous... many many centuries before Karl Marx wrote his manifesto "Das Kapital" (note 13). In the Byzantine Empire, the Bogomil and Paulician sects were known as "the Communist Sect".

 

The genesis of Bogomilism and Paulicianism

 

As emphasised by Bossuet, Paulicianism, one of the major branches of Manichaeism, took refuge in Bulgaria, its followers having taken the name of Bulgarians, Bougres, or Bogomils. From there, these heretics made their settlements in Italy and throughout Lombardy.

 

These same proposals are found in "The Collection" by Etienne de Bourbon, who was a Dominican of the thirteenth century, for whom the "Cathars" were also called Bulgars because their western origins began in Bulgaria. Italy was thus in many ways the heir of Bulgaria, but the cultural barriers that separate the countries with Slavic languages from the Latin speaking countries make this a little known fact. Thus, the influence of Bulgaria in the socio-religious development of Europe is not to be underestimated As demonstrated by the academic Professor Dimitar Angelov, in his paper read at the opening of the International Symposium on "Bogomilism and Catharism" held in Sofia in 1992: "the ancient history of Bulgaria has had moments that demonstrate its presence in Europe not only geographically and territorially, but also fundamentally, and the considerable part it has played in the historical destiny of a portion of this continent. Any serious research undertaken by Bulgarian or foreign authors come to the same conclusion, which is :  Originally from  tenth century Bulgaria, the Bogomil doctrine has not stayed confined to Bulgarian lands, but made inroads during its development on a European scale."

St Augustine sacrificing to a Manichean Idol Xenophon in Persia

'St. Augustine sacrificing to a Manichaean Idol' By an unknown Flemish painter

Xenophon, Greek Philosopher

Christ's Descent into Hell

'Christ's Descent into Hell' in the style of Hieronymous Bosch 1550 - 1560

Byzantine denunciations of Bogomilism

 

Born in Chaldea, otherwise known as Iraq, Manichaeism very soon developed in neighbouring countries, that's to say, in the lands under Byzantine rule... and particularly in Bulgaria. Long before the Paulician and Bogomil heresy was denounced in the west, Byzantine treatises refuting the heresy describe and make know to us "the extent of this sect and its ideas."

In the reign of the Bulgarian King Peter  (927-969), we see that Bogomilism (by which we mean Manichaeism) is present in this country and attested to by the "Treatise against the Bogomils" ...we find the priest Cosmas the Bulgarian preaching to the crowds against the heresy, his writing can be located to 972AD, or even earlier. Logically, the composition of this writing responds to a necessity: that of denouncing a heresy that seems to have already established itself in Bulgaria a long time before. The sect couldn't have spread to this country after the eighth century, because the treatises don't describe it as a newly emerged heresy, but rather as a huge groundswell movement very solidly rooted in the local population.

According to the commentators, the situation in Bulgaria seems to be particularly desperate: the Orthodox Byzantine theologian Euthymius Zigabenus in his "Dogmatic Panoply" (XII century) insists that the Bogomil Manicheans contaminate the spheres of influence. Some Bulgarian and Serbian councils also stood up to denounce the "filthy and accursed heresy", like the examples of 1221 and the Synod of April 8th 1203 (Council of Jica under the chairmanship of Orthodox Archbishop Sava). But the authorities limit themselves to acknowledging the dramatic situation, which Professor Dimitar Angelov states thusly: "The impact of the heresy grows stronger and stronger, and the preaching of the heretics shows no signs of weakening". Under various names, Bogomilism continues to spread throughout the land of the Serbs, and to other neighbouring countries like Bosnia..... Despite the cruel measures, the dangerous heresy takes on a renewed strength in the reign of Manuel Ist Comnenus (1143-1180). The Bogomil's successors, known under the name of Patarini or Kutugeri, continued to spread their doctrine ...right up until the Turkish conquest."

 

The Bosnian and Bulgarian churches became Bogomils

 

Many sources could still be cited in order to trace a more convincing picture of the omnipotence of this heresy in these parts. But suffice to say that when Prince Duklja Vukan (1175) warned the papacy that the country was contaminated by the cult, he stressed that the Ban Kulin called the Bogomils "Christians par excellence". However, according to Radin Butkovic (died 1467), the Church of Bosnia and Bulgaria is also composed of these "Christians par excellence". This means that the two brotherhoods of Bulgarian Manicheans, the "Ecclesia Bulgara" and the "Ecclesia Dragovitsia" had become the national church. In other words, Orthodoxy had already disappeared a few centuries before from Bulgaria, Serbia, and Bosnia.

 

From Orphism to Bogomilism

 

The absorption of Orphism by Bogomilism is a phenomenon that has been identified by several authors. We can cite among others Georgi Vasilev (note 14) and W. Wakefield. The latter think Bogomilism integrated the "Orphic cults" which came out of the Pythagorean movement (note 15). We see once again the natural tendency towards the syncretism of Manichaeism and Bogomilism. The deep purpose of this sect is to give legitimacy to the doctrine of reincarnation, by manipulation of any various philosophical and religious materials it encounters. Thus, J. Guiraud does not hesitate to emphasise the interpenetration of the Bogomil belief in reincarnation and that which existed in Pythagoreanism, seen as a Hellenised Orphism (note 16). J. Ivanov has the same viewpoint, and considers that the Manichaean and Bogomil doctrine of reincarnation was Christianised through a merger with Orphism (note 17). It was consolidated through the falsification of two fourth century apocrypha, older than Bogomilism itself, but with a Manichean inspiration: the Gospel of Nicodemus and the Homily of Epiphanius. The interest of Bogomils for these writings is explained by the place that the story of Christ's Descent into Hell takes in this literature. It comes from a "Christianised" version of the descent of Orpheus into Hades. As such, Georgi Vasilev notes the repeated use of the word revival, ανα-γενναω, in the Homily of Epiphanius, a term that remains absent from the New Testament, which prefers to use the verb εγειρω, "wake up, rise again." According to the same principle, the Homily of Epiphanius states that after the crucifixion, "Christ is born again," this contradicts John 11:25: "'I am the Resurrection and the Life." Note also that the Old Bulgarian version of this homily veers away from the Gospels also: "iз мртвых порождаеть ся", "порозств (о)", "порождеNье" which is a deliberately ambiguous vocabulary (born again, reborn). These terms press home the point the idea of reincarnation, of "new life", while intentionally excluding the term resurrection. The author of the Homily integrates the theme of reincarnation in a Christian context by causing correspondence between elements of the Orphic and episodes of the life of Christ. As written in Genesis (3:19), you shall return "to the ground from which you were taken: for dust thou art and to dust you shall return." Here the Holy Scripture brandishes this sentence like a direct consequence of original sin, and that consequence is simply a result of the mortal condition of which mankind is afflicted. In verse 16 of the same chapter we can read "you shall give birth in pain," another sad result of original sin. It condemns mankind to be born to "death" and to "incarnate" in pain. The body in which man is now coated is irrevocably doomed to death. Therefore, according to the Hebrew Bible there's only a tiny difference between the concepts of incarnation and death. Incarnation, death and reincarnation are the phases of a sterile, inconsistent and perverse cycle, which, if not the prelude to the true resurrection, is only "dust which returns to dust."

But in its third chapter, the Homily of Epiphanius seems to have no other perspective on the "other life" other than to see it as a cycle of incarnation and reincarnation. We note a particularly pronounced "mirror effect" between the concepts of Christ's incarnation and "rebirth": "An angel announced to Mary the mother of Christ, the good news of his birth, and an angel announced to Mary Magdalene, the good news of his rebirth, from the tomb."

 

The author stresses again the cyclical concept of incarnation, death and reincarnation from another passage:

"For as Christ is born of a virgin with the lock of virginity marked with a seal, similarly, the rebirth of Christ takes place with the seals of the tomb unopened."

 

Finally, let us cite A. Vaillant, who sees a non-Christian substrata running through the Gospel of Nicodemus, a work in vogue among the Bogomils: "Hades, faithful guardian of the prison of hell, who defends his prisoners against Christ and that Christ confirms in his functions, is a souvenir of pagan mythology and the Charon of Greek popular legends"(note 18).

 

The Orphic initiation is therefore one of the major components of Bogomilism. The doctrine of reincarnation conveyed by this sect was coated with a Christian appearance by maintaining a scholarly confusion between resurrection and reincarnation. The absorption of several Greek myths, including that of Orpheus, brought a "Hellenistic" element to Bogomilism, which sought to integrate Christianity with its culture of the "mysteries" of Hades or Arallu. The Homily of Epiphanius also suggests, with some skill, that beyond the apparent Judaism claimed by the story of Christ's descent into Hell, hides a mystery religion which is none other than the "Orphic katabasis": " Let us also learn the mysteries of beyond, knowledge of a "hidden God", of miracles hidden under the earth, and learn how to those in hell, he shone his preaching " (note 19). As emphasised by B. Bogdanov (note 20), here we have the concrete elements that are borrowed from the Orphic initiation as described by Plato (Phaedo, 68a): "When human loves or wives or sons have died, many men have willingly gone to the other world led by the hope of seeing there those whom they longed for, and of being with them …"

 

Orphism in Bulgarian Legend

 

The survival of the Orphic myth in Bulgarian legends is undeniable, and indicates that elements of the myth received mass treatment in society. Verkovic was convinced of this and we have unearthed several examples, including "Song of Orpheus in old Bulgarian", which he published in Moscow in 1867, and his collection Veda Slovena. According to J. Ivanov, Verkovic found some of his sources among older writers, such as the Bulgarian writer K. Kostenecki and Iv. Gundulic (1588-1638). The latter, in his poem Osman [III, 33-64], suggests the Bulgarian origin of Orpheus and the local legend that tells of "the seven springs of Marica which sprung from the will of Orpheus."

 

Verkovic's work has been widely used and discussed among others such as, Iv. Bogdanov (note 21). The extensions of the Dionysian myth of Orpheus (Orpheus was torn to shreds by the Bacchae, who were the followers of Dionysus) are also detectable in the legendary Bulgarian, as reported in the study by E. Teodorov. He establishes "a parallel between the rites performed on the eve of St. George and the Thracian cult of Dionysus" (note 22). J. Ivanov in return noted that the Bulgarian society has fully integrated into its imaginary, elements present in the Dionysian myth of Orpheus. He argues as well that "the rivalry between the shepherd, or musician, and the samodivi (Bulgarian Bacchae) in the folklore matches the Orphic pattern where the emulation takes place between Orpheus and the Nymphs" (note 23). Finally and to close this issue, we must again mention B. Goranov, who furnishes many sources of folk tales that borrow significant Orphic elements: "The legends of Bulgarian musicians are similar to the great Thracian myths of Orpheus" (note 24). Moreover, these legends have served as a vehicle for Bogomilism to enter into Slavic territory. In his study "The begging singers and wandering Bogomils" Al Veselovsky said that wandering beggars are the propagators of Bogomilism in Russia.  The Orphism that comes from this folklore is not without relevance.

 

Pedophilic and incestuous rites

 

The heresy was known and commented upon in the regions under Byzantine rule, long before the West began to address the problem. As Philippe Ilial, a graduate of Advanced Studies in History and co-editor of the magazine "The Medieval Times" states, the Manichaean sect of Paulicians from Chaldea and Armenia could have established themselves very early on in Bosnia and Bulgaria. Originally a strange dualistic sect born in Babylon, it appears to have established itself on Bulgarian lands around 969, under the good auspices of John Tzimisces. Strongly positioned in south Armenia, the Paulicians were strategically located between the borders of the Byzantine Empire and the Armenian Orthodox Church, but also not far from Thrace, and Bulgaria. In 719, the patriarch of the Armenian Church, John of Ojoun, known as the Philosopher, was shocked by the practices, the importance and the teachings of the sect, and decided to build a Synod to destroy what he called "the sons of Satan." Justifying the condemnation of the Paulicians, and wishing wholeheartedly that the entire world would revolt against their odious rites, John of Ojoun writes hefty "Acts" charged with describing their ceremonies: He argues that the Paulicians secretly assembled on some nights and that the mothers mated with their own sons, and that the girls did the same with their fathers. If a child came to be born of these incestuous unions, it was agreed to throw the newly born infant from one member of the sect to another, until death of the infant ensued. The last to receive the child, and in whose arms it died became the Perfect, the cult's ceremonial priest. The body of the poor little infant would then serve as a feast to commemorate the "election" of the new master of the Order. John of Ojoun tells us that on these occasions the child's blood was drawn into a container, and mixing the blood with flour, the faithful followers confected the Hosts; the communion wafers.

 

The story that comes down from this Armenian Patriarch seems truly hard to believe.... we automatically shrink from the idea that these sects could push the frontiers of cultic abomination so far.

But nevertheless this testimony probably contains some truth, because linking together the Paulicians and the Bogomils we find that the famous Byzantine Michael Constantine Psellos (1050) describes in his dialogue entitled "On the Operation of Demons", a similar ceremony in Bogomil Thrace. Apart from the start of the ceremony which is the same, he adds straightforwardly that the child was flayed and that the blood thus collected was not just used to prepare the Hosts, but would be incorporated into various foods and beverages, which were not just reserved for the consumption of sect members, but would be given as a sign of welcome to visitors.

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