July 30th, 2010

From"Decoded" The arrival




While my area of concentration has been tracing and understanding the developments in the Authentic Magical Tradition since the 1600s, I have traced the broad outlines of initiation back to ancient Sumerian Civilization. There, after a mysterious age of enlightenment, a priesthood developed an initiatory system which has survived, in somewhat fragmentary form, in successive magical societies ever since. There is a very ancient story that accounts for this system of initiation. Kenneth Mackenzie relates that "According to Berosus, there appeared in the Erythrean Sea — the modern Persian Gulf — bordering on Babylonia (actually Sumer, as we have learned since Mackenzie's time — TAG), an animal endowed with reason, whose name was Oannes or John, perhaps the Anu of the Assyrian inscriptions…the usual appearance in which it was visible was in that of a fish, having beneath its fish's head a human head, and feet beneath like those of a man…he used in the daytime to converse with men, but never ate in common with them; that he communicated a knowledge of letters, sciences and arts. He taught the art of building, the principles of architecture and geometry; he was also the first instructor in botany and agriculture." This system was taken up by the Priesthood, whose garb in Sumer, Assyria, Babylonia and eventually even Roman Catholicism, included a fish-head miter and robes ending in a fish tale. The Masons eventually took up the teaching of this system in graduated initiations, but had become fragmentary, the original number of points or initiations being 360, preserved as 90 in the Egyptian Rite of Misraim (one fourth of the system) in the West, while maintain as a system of approximately 360 points in the East as the healing system of acupuncture, to which it corresponds.

As one writer notes, "It is from Babylonia, but originally from India, that we of the West got our manner of dividing the circle into 360 degrees. ...The number 360 arises from an old Theosophical teaching of the ancient God-Wisdom of mankind, to the effect that the true number of days in a year is 360, the cycle of the seasons. But as the ages passed, and due to the fact that the earth is an individual with a will of its own, it does things at times, not exactly disobeying the mandates of the system in which it is enmeshed, but determined, as are the other planets, to move a little on its own. So that as the ages pass along—taking the mean of 360 days in a year—the daily rotation of the earth quickens a little bit for a while, and the days become 361, and then 362, in a year, and then 363, 364 and now at the present time our year consists of 365 days and a fraction. Then this libration returns to the normal 360 days in a year; and then the Earth slows down its rotational period, so that for ages, any one of our Earth years is less than 360 days: 359, 358, 357, 356, until it reaches the end of that libratory cycle. Then it begins to swing back; and thus the earth continues to follow this libration.

"That is why the Babylonian initiates, getting their ancient wisdom originally from India, divided the circle into 360 points or degrees; because in their Temple-crypts and Initiation-chambers they were taught that the true earth-year consists of 360 days. Thus the circle became adopted in mathematics as divided into 360 points, cogs, degrees — call them what you like. It is a wheel, a wheel of time, which actually applies to the earth."

Another source informs us (Melville, 2002):

"The final step in this story, occurring probably some time in the Ur III period, right at the end of the third millennium, was the introduction of a sexagesimal place value system. The number of signs was reduced to just two: a vertical wedge derived from the small cone often used for the base unit, and a corner wedge, derived from the small circle. The corner wedge had a value of ten vertical wedges. In the sexagesimal counting system described above, the next size unit was the large cone, worth six circles. In the place value system, this unit was denoted by the same-sized vertical wedge as the base unit, and it was worth six corner wedges. Now the pair of symbols could be repeated in an indefinitely larger alternating series of corner and vertical wedges, always keeping the same conversion factors of 10 and 6. The price paid was that a vertical wedge could now mean 1, or 60 (6x10), or 3600 (60x60), and so on. Its actual value was determined by its place.

The sexagesimal place-value system greatly facilitated calculations, but, of course, at the end of the day, the final answer had to be translated back into the underlying metrological system of units. So a problem would be stated in proper units and the solution would be given in proper units, but the intermediate calculations were carried out in the new sexagesimal place value system."

I have some greater hope of recovering all 360 degrees of the authentic tradition, but I think I, or my best students or others who read this may succeed in "accomplishing" the entire degree system of the Rite of Memphis-Misraim, fully one fourth of the ancient system, bypassing (though not necessarily being a substitution for) ritual initiation and generating profound understanding of and use for all existing systems of initiation, and enhancing the work of those involved in such systems.

The "trigger points" or "power points", known as points chauds in the system of Gnostic Voudon as taught by T Michael Bertiaux and developed according to his methods, with due consultation with other sources, are an attempt to expand upon the empowerments and their corresponding points on the human body developed at the end of the 20th Century and the beginning of the 21st. As stated the authentic tradition may be reasonably postulated to have originated in ancient Sumer, Akad and Babylon, with heavenly correspondences to each degree of initiation in a complete circular system of 360 degrees, of which the 90 degrees of the Rite of Misraim (Egypt) represents only one fourth of the original. The earliest form of the authentic tradition was shamanic, and remnants of this system survive all over the world in aboriginal society. The first systematic system of magick appears to have come from the rich early societies of Mesopotamia, Sumer, Akkad , Babylon and related societies. There the first known system of numbers was developed, circa 5000 years ago. It is known that the Babylonians employed a sexigesimal, or base 60 system of numbers, in contrast to our base 10 system. The latter being obviously based on "counting on one's fingers" . Various ideas have come forth to explain this curious number system, but it is obvious that all systems of language and number in ancient times were intertwined with magick and mysticism and viewed with awe, and that six sixties equals 360, the number of degrees in the Babylonian circle, held to be in concert with the wheel of the year of 360 days. While we use a base ten system, there are many survivals in our culture the Babylonian system, such as 60 seconds in a minute, 60 minutes in an hour, and in terrestrial measurement, 360 degrees in a circle.

Now, the term "degree" also represents a marker of initiation, as in the system of 90 Degrees in the Oriental Rite of Misraim (Egypt in Hebrew). The English word descends from the Latin gradus, or step. In the end, a degree of initiation, or in the many other contexts in which the term is used, represents a step, and the Mesopotamian system in base 60 has many preoccupations with six times that number, or 360. We learn from Ctesias that the city of Babylon was built on both sides of the river in the form of a square, and enclosed within a triple row of lofty walls. Ctesias makes the outermost wall 360 stades. The legendary list of kings tends to repeat reigns of 360 years. Other "correspondences" show the survival of this predeliction in various ways, among them:

  • A Divine Year for the Hindus is equivalent to 360 solar years.
  • According to the Chinese medicine, the human body has 360 bones and 360 small articulations; it counts 360 points of acupuncture and 360 major drugs for the therapy.
  • The 360 towers at Babylon.
  • The 360 steles, altars or idols surrounding the pre Islamic Kaaba of Mecca.
  • The 360 degrees of a circle and the 360 symbols of the Zodiac.
  • The 360 glances of Allah in the Islamic countries. It is the number of times per day that God looks to the secret or preserved Tablet, that was the first thing created by God. (Koran 85:22)
  • The 360 chapels built around the mosque of Balk.
  • The 360 temples on the Lowham mountain, in China.
  • The 360 statues of divinities to the palace of Daïri in Japan.
  • The 360 gods of the orphism.
  • In classical Qabala, 'The Messiah' (HMSHYCH) has a value of 360.
  • In classical Qabala, the letter shin, a euphemism for God, has the value of 360.
  • "If you ever wondered why '24' hours in a day, and not some other, arbitrarily chosen number, or why there are '360' degrees in a circle instead of some other number or some other unit, the reason stems from how handily 24 and 360 break down into many useful fractional parts using integers. For example, 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 8, 9, 10, 12, 15, 18, 20, 24, 30, 36, 40, 45, 60, 90, 120, 180, and 360 are ALL factors of 360, while 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 8, 12, and 24 are ALL factors of 24. Few numbers break down into as many handy factors, and these numbers have a lot of factors in common. So while one might use another arbitrary number, chances are such a number would be less useful when considering fractions of the whole. 1/2, 1/3, 1/4, 1/6, 1/8, 1/9, 1/10, 1/12, 1/15, 1/18, 1/20, 1/24, 1/30, 1/36, 1/40, 1/45, 1/60, 1/90, 1/120, and 1/180 are all handy, though the ones under 1/12 are even more so. For similar reasons, one 'dozen' is a handy unit in which to sell items. So regardless of how long a planet's day is in actual time, breaking it up into 24 units is a handy thing to do. Further divisions in 60 minutes and 60 seconds uses these same numbers and handy factors." (quotation © January of 2000 by James L. R. Beach)
  • The 360 Aeons of the gnostics.
  • In the past, there were 360 days in one terrestrial year, according to Immanuel Velikovsky. Various old documents from ancient people tend to confirm it.
  • The 360 sovereigns who reigned in Egypt since the first known Pharaoh until the Augustus Caesar supplanted the Pharaohs (year 1 of the Christian era).
  • The 360 urns for the usage of the priests of Egypt for the libations in the honor of Osiris.
  • The 360 Egyptian priests who poured every day the water of the Nile to Acanthopolis in a bored cask.
  • The Athenian people erected 360 statues to Demetrius.
  • The enclosing wall of Babylon built by Semiramis had 360 stages length.
  • Mahomet destroys the 360 idols of Mecca.
  • Darius divided the Gyndes into 360 channels because one of his sacred horses had drowned in this river.
  • In the great Persian feast the magi were made accompany by 360 young peoples.
  • The number 360 is used 2 times in the Bible.
  • There are 12 numbers in the Bible which are multiple of 360, and the sum of the occurrences of each of numbers gives 26.
  • The expression 'do not fear' is used 360 times in the Bible, according to Pastor R. Wurmbrand.

  1. All recipients of points chauds beyond a few should be invested with the "power and wisdom" of the ancient priesthoods, if not with the actual priesthoods themselves, as "containments" for the energies transmitted.
  2. All recipients should be encouraged to keep notes and share with other participants the results of empowerments as they progress, be they positive, negative or neutral.
  3. The points should be administered in "sacred space" or "power zones". While room should be made for spontaneous empowerments, on the whole the recipients should study the points and their correspondences, the antient degrees with which they are associated, and should indicate themselves out of their own intuition and study and experience which points are to be empowered on a given occasion, by word and gesture, and should determine the number of points they are comfortable assimilating on a given occasion.

Refer to previously issued correspondences between known 97 points, location and uses.

In the accompanying table we present the points chauds and correspondences as originally developed for this research project in the 1990s, keyed on the 97 degree system of Memphis. The researcher can quick-reference the points and degrees in The Compleat Rite of Memphis.

Integrated with this table is information about corresponding acupuncture points, based on the work of David Zeitz, a Florida-based certified acupuncturist who has attempted to correlate these specific points with acupuncture points in common. Take note that there are far more acupuncture 'points' than the 90-plus degrees in this system, let alone systems of 33 or 9 degrees. It is conjectured that other points in acupuncture may eventually give clues to undiscovered or lost correspondences.

Finally, following the listing, I quote without comment some of the most exotic, speculative ideas considered in recent decades on the origin of magical knowledge in relationship to this system. These comments should be taken as speculation, and no more. Before the 1940s the Sumerian civilization was completely buried in the mists of history, though its effects on the science, religion and other aspects of Mesopotamian and other civilizations were known to us from successor cultures.


end part one
click here to go to part two

From"Decoded" The arrival


continued from Part One

    Twelve spokes, one wheel, navels three.
    Who can comprehend this?
    On it are placed together
    three hundred and sixty like pegs.
    They shake not in the least.
    (Dirghatama, Rg Veda 1.164.48)

    A seven-named horse does draw
    this three-naved wheel...
    Seven steeds draw the seven-wheeled chariot...
    Wise poets have spun a seven-strand tale
    around this heavenly calf, the Sun.
    (Dirghatama, Rg Veda 1.164.1-5)

Where in Hell did Sexagismal numbers come from?

Maybe we should start with the question: What is a sexagismal number? We deal with sexagismal numbers all the time ( yes, that was a very bad pun). sexagismal numbers are based upon fractions of 60. Sexigismal numbers are the bases of our measures of degrees , minutes, seconds and hours, minutes, and seconds. Now we have a new question: How did the division of a circle and the division of a day come to have the same fractional components? The answer lies in a number system based on the sum of fractions of 60 that preceded both the notions of length of a day and division of the circle. As you might guess from that statement, sexagismal numbers are old; very old.

To get to the first vestiges of a base 60 numeric system we have to go back almost 6000 yes to the region then known as Sumeria. Sumerians were the first city dwellers. They actively traded goods, owned land, and by all accounts, had their share of disputes about price, ownership and value. In short: same problems, different millennia. The trade issues necessitate the development of a written language, and numerical system. They weren't worried about recording history, they were interested in recording profit. The mathematics of Sumeria preceded the invention of an alphabet by a few millennia, so it took a bit of time to decipher what they were recording and the numerology had a profound defect, which I'll talk about in a moment. Like the modern Arabic notation we use, the Sumerian numerical system was ordered right to left. For comparison purposes, let's take a look at our system first. The number 349 is really a short form of the numeric expression (3*100) + (4*10) + (1*9) + (0). The Sumerian expression 3,4,9 could mean (3*60) + (4*1) + (9/60) or it might mean (3*1) + (4/60) + (9/360). The numerology of Sumeria was context based, they didn't have a position for zero. They could form numbers with extreme precision, but without a context, the magnitude remains unknown.

The Sumerians recorded their numbers on clay tablets using a stylus. Tables were calculated of fractions of 60 and numerical equivalents were derived for sums of fractions. The clay dried and the records, while somewhat hard to decipher, represented a monumental amount of accumulated calculation. This effort was, as they say, "cast in stone". Over 4 millennia, Sumeria came and went, but those hardened tablets were recorded by many later civilizations .The beauty of the Sumerian system lay in it's extreme precision in fractions. The factors of 60 are 1,2,3,4,5,6,10,12, 15, 20 and 30. In the base 10 system the factors are 1,2, and 5. There is no exact numerical representation for the value of 1/3 in a base 10 system but in Sumerian notation it is simply 20/60. The paradox of Sumeria is the extreme precision coupled with a total lack of accuracy. This a common mathematical thread which holds older civilizations together. The fractions that the Sumerians labor sly cast in stone would become the basis for calculation of astronomical movements 4000 years later by the Greeks, and used in timing calculations to land a man on the moon over 6 millennia later.



“Origin. The Degree symbol was originally the Egyptian Hieroglyphic symbol for the sun. The Egyptian year was only 360 days long and the circle was given ...”



Twelve spokes, one wheel, navels three.    Who can comprehend this?

    On it are placed together    three hundred and sixty like pegs.

    They shake not in the least.

    (Dirghatama, Rig Veda 1.164.48)


The Mathematics



The ancient cultures divided the sky into 36 "night stations" of stars. These could be divided into a total of 108 (36 x 3) segments or sars (Latvian zar- = "branch") for better detail. I simply calibrated the data by potentiating 108 by 10 to get 1080 (= 360 x 3) and then dividing by 3. This was applied to the individual "reigns" of the (Sumerian) kings. to get the degrees of arc of the circle.

For example, we potentiate 20 sars x 10 = 200. Then we divide by 3, which gives 66.66 degrees (of 360 degrees). When we do this with all of the lengths of reign, the total is 360°. Hence, the ancients are simply "sectioning" their ancient heavenly "clock" of stars. therefore


Each length of "reign" of a Sumerian "son of God"applies to a particular NAMED "heavenly" region of the 360-degree "circle" of heaven.


The length of "reign" listed for each alleged "king" is the distance in heliacal rising star days between consecutive "NAMES" on the list of kings. These names are identified in detail subsequently as specific stars in the heavens, moving within these six "heavenly houses", which 6 preceded the division of the heavens into 12.










The Iranian calendar ( Gahshomari-ye Irani) can refer to any in a succession of a set of calendars. They are used for over two millennia in Iran

.(The name Iran has been in use natively since the Sassanid period and came into international use from 1935, before which the country was known internationally as Persia...)

  (Persia), Afghanistan


The Islamic Republic of Afghanistan is a landlocked country in south central Asia. It is variously described as being located within Central Asia, South Asia, or the Middle East... and related societies

 The current official Iranian calendar begins on the vernal equinox as determined by astronomical calculations for the Iran Standard Time meridian.

A meridian is an imaginary arc on the Earth's surface from the North Pole to the South Pole that connects all locations running along it with a given longitude. The position of a point on the meridian is given by the latitude. Each meridian is perpendicular to all circles of latitude at the  (52.5°E or GMT+3.5h). This determination of starting moment is more accurate than the Gregorian calendar.The Gregorian calendar is the internationally accepted civil calendar. It was first proposed by the Calabrian doctor Aloysius Lilius, and decreed by Pope Gregory XIII, after whom the calendar was named, on 24 February 1582 by the papal bull Inter gravissimas because it is synchronized with the vernal equinox year, but requires consulting an astronomical almanac. One of the longest chronological records in human history, the Iranian calendar has been modified time and again during its history to suit administrative, climatic, and religious purposes.


In English the current calendar is sometimes called "Solar Hejri" calendar, and its years are designated AP, short for Anno Persico. The Iranian year usually begins within a day of 21 March of the Gregorian calendar. To find the corresponding year of the Gregorian calendar, add 621 or 622 (depending on the time of the year) to a Solar Hejri year.


Ancient calendars


Although the earliest evidence of Iranian calendrical traditions is from the second millennium BC, predating the appearance of the Iranian prophet Zoroaster

Zoroaster or Zarathushtra , also referred to as Zartosht , was an ancient Iranian prophet and religious poet. The hymns attributed to him, the Gathas, are at the liturgical core of Zoroastrianism... the first fully preserved calendar is that of the Achaemenids. Throughout recorded history, Persians have been keen on the idea and importance of having a calendar


.They were among the first cultures to use a solar calendar. A solar calendar is a calendar whose dates indicate the position of the earth on its revolution around the sun .-Tropical solar calendars  and have long favoured a solar over lunar


A lunar calendar is a calendar that is based on cycles of the moon phase. The only widely used purely lunar calendar is the Islamic calendar or Hijri calendar, whose year always consists of 12 lunar months and lunisolar

A lunisolar calendar is a calendar in many cultures whose date indicates both the moon phase and the time of the solar year. If the solar year is defined as a tropical year then a lunisolar calendar will give an indication of the season; if it is taken as a sidereal year then the calendar will.

 approaches. The sun has always been a symbol in Iranian culture and is closely related to the folklore regarding Cyrus the Great


Cyrus the Great , also known as Cyrus II of Persia and Cyrus the Elder, was the first Zoroastrian Persian Shahanshah...  himself.

Old Iranian calendar

 Old Persian inscriptions and tablets indicate that early Iranians used a 360-day calendar based on the Babylonian system and modified for their beliefs and day names. Its months had two or three divisions depending on the phase of the moon. Twelve months of 30 days were named for festivals or activities of the pastoral


Pastoral, as an adjective, refers to the lifestyle of shepherds and pastoralists, moving livestock around larger areas of land according to seasons and availability of water and food. "Pastoral" also describes literature, art and music which depicts the life of shepherds, often in a highly...year. A 13th month was added every six years to keep the calendar synchronized with the seasons.




    * year: The Sumerians used a 360 day year by 2100 BC.

    * week: The Babylonians introduced the seven day week, due to the belief that seven brought bad luck, so they did not want to work the seventh day.

    * hour: The 12 hour day and 12 hour night originates from Mesopotamia. The length of these hours changed through the year, being equally spaced over the time of light and dark, respectively.



“…the Gnostic consciousness, the mysticism of the Eucharist is a fundamental expression of the principles of Eros and Logos.  Eros is the law of sexual joining or coming together and Logos is the law of rational structure or otganization of energy into patterns…..The descent of the divine into the events of human history is made possible by the existence of a succession of bishops, which extends back to the ancient priesthoods as well as at the time of the Christ and the Holy Apostles…The Old Roman Church … did teach the existence of such a (secret) map to be found in the body of the chela, which sowed actually where there were differences between the ideals or true placement of the powers in their collection of pacquets and what was the actual result of the process of incarnation” Michael Bertiaux


“…I made use of some inner drive and developed on the physical plane a particular structure of lattices and connective circuits, which were probably latent in an otherwise purely verbal system…That rather lifeless system, which contained some rather lifeless Egyptian roots, was really quite remarkable. It was the design for the computer and energy system of what we might now be tempted to call something like a UFO object or projection form some empirical or chaotic marma; but which at that time, as strange as it might seem to the uninformed reader of these matters, was posing rather inconspicuously as an Egyptian Rite of Ancient Freemasonry with the name of ‘Memphis-Misraim.’” Michael Bertiaux 97° 

“"The Masonic Fraternity is the modern repository of the Mysteries." Leslie M. Scott, 33°, 1946


“So it was that Charles E. (‘Ted’) Webber…approached me about The Sirius Mystery…He said\ quietly to me: ‘We are very interested in your book The Sirius Mystery.  We realize you have written this without any knowledge of the traditions of Masonry, and you may not be aware of this, but you have made some discoveries which relate to the most central Masonic traditions at a high level, including some things none of us ever knew…I asked him what sort of connection there was and he did mention specifically that it was my work on ancient Egypt, on Isis and Osiris, and the ancient traditions of the star Sirius…” Robert Temple


“Master: ‘This Serpent, forming a circle, is an emblem of eternity, which is without beginning or end. It has the property of renewing its skin, and thus figures the destruction and renewal of nature, which appears to weaken and even perish at certain epochs; but which only grows old to renew its youth and prepare itself for new revolutions.

‘The Phoenix is a still more natural exposition of the succession and the perpetuation of the principle in nature. Mythology has represented the bird as reviving from its own ashes, emblemizing hoe all things earthly will continue to be reborn from itself.

‘To this may be added that it symbolized the cycle of the Star Sirius or Sothis of 1461 years.

“sign – Represent examination, as if through a telescope.

“Token – Join left hands, and point to Sirius, or Sothis, with right index finger.

“Pass Word – SIGE (silence) ALETTHE (TRUTH)

“Word  -  Balder”

53rd Degree Knight of Sage of the Phoenix, Memphis Rite 




"Sumerians have the distinction of being the earliest inhabitants of the Fertile Crescent region.  Beginning 8,000-years B.C.E., Sumerian culture realized a priest-astronomer class, improved agrarian techniques and developed the first sexagesimal (base 60) numbering system."  Clark Nelson


“In 1936, a tablet was excavated some 200 miles from Babylon.  Here one  should make the interjection that the Sumerians were first to make one of   man's greatest inventions, namely, writing; through written communication,   knowledge could be passed from one person to others, and from one   generation to the next and future ones.  They impressed their cuneiform   (wedge-shaped) script on soft clay tablets with a stylus, and the tablets   were then hardened in the sun.  The mentioned tablet, whose translation   was partially published only in 1950, is devoted to various geometrical   figures, and states that the ratio of the perimeter of a regular hexagon  to the circumference of the circumscribed circle equals a number which in  modern notation is given by 57/60 + 36/(60^2) (the Babylonians used the   sexagesimal system, i.e., their base was 60 rather than 10).


 “ The Babylonians knew, of course, that the perimeter of a hexagon is   exactly equal to six times the radius of the circumscribed circle, in fact   that was evidently the reason why they chose to divide the circle into 360  degrees (and we are still burdened with that figure to this day).  The tablet, therefore, gives ... Pi = 25/8 = 3.125.

 “So that's who gave us the 360 degrees in the circle.  See, assignment of degree-measure to angles is somewhat arbitrary.  Some choices are more natural than others, though, and when you're working in base 60, 6x60 is a pretty natural choice.” Petr Beckmann

 "The initiatory pageants, once celebrated with ceremonies and ritual in Greece, Asia Minor, Egypt, and Mesopotamia, are now known to have taken place in one form or another in many countries and on most continents. The goal was to unfold consciousness, urging it on to heights of which it was formerly unaware, for the aim of the Mysteries has ever been a "discipline and stimulus to virtue" William R. Laudahn


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