History, Evolution, and The Darwin Debate

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Neolithic sources//genesis of the great religions

September 3rd, 2009 · 1 Comment

One of the confusing aspects of the discussion of Indian religion and the Indo-European question is the way the critics of the Aryan Invasion theory insist that the evidence points toward an very ancient history of Indian culture/religion. They are right, but this is no argument for the existence of Aryans in those periods. One of the persistent themes here is the reference to the period of the sixth millennium BCE for a flowring of Shivaism. That presses the bingo button on the eonic effect.
More generally, the period of the Neolithic is the creative source for much that comes later:
Neolithic Beginnings

As Steve Mithen notes in After The Ice, “Human history began in 50,000 BC…Little of significance happened until 20,000 BC…Then came an astonishing 15,000 years that saw the origin of farming, towns, and civilization. By 5000 BC there was very little for later history to do; all the groundwork for the modern world had been completed. History had simply to unfold until it reached the present day.”

That there was a primordial source of what we now call the great religions in the sixth millennium BCE makes a lot of sense, and all at once the Indian evidence begins to suggest that.

Here is a selection (not online) from World History And The Eonic Effect, on the genesis of the great religions:

5.2.3 Genesis of the Great Religions
We see the onset of the Great Religions in the Axial Age, yet surely their real beginning lies in the Neolithic. The relation of religion and civilization is complex, although our eonic phasing clarifies its confusion by distinguishing the stream and sequence distinction between religious evolution in general and the results when this crosses the boundary of the Axial Age. This effect must have existed before. An example of this is the entry of Buddhism and Jainism onto the world stage, relative to ‘ET5’.
The best and most beautifully clear example of this relative transform effect is the modern Reformation. A small piece breaks away and undergoes rapid-fire change climaxing in the this case with something that by the point of the divide no longer seems religious at all, modern secularism, not to be confused with scientism. These ‘re-formations’ show the relationship of ‘evolving’ religion and the eonic sequence. In light of the modern Reformation, the Old Testament suddenly becomes comprehensible and clearly records this contradiction. We even see vestigial traces of old Goddess worship.
A similar effect must have been present earlier. The interaction of the early goddess-worship, Indo-European and Semitic polytheism, and the transition of these to patriarchal monotheism is one of the most confusing aspects of historical study. It is mostly an effect of the intersection of Indo-European, and Semitic, nomadisms with our Axial phase. We will thus allow ourselves one speculative venture not connected with our basic analysis, but in an area where our thinking can perhaps clarify the confusion over an early ‘matriarchy’, that has continued ever since the works of Bachofen. The idea that Greek religion, for example, shows an overlay of earlier goddess-oriented religion, perhaps with a Neolithic source, overlaid with Indo-European polytheism is a view that is frequently rebutted, and yet in broad outlines might make a great deal of sense. It is a perfectly natural outcome. The sudden patriarchal ‘re-formation’ is thus slightly anomalous.
It seems that the period ‘–8000 to –5500’ is the natural gestation point for an entity that we tend to call ‘religion’ in civilization (i.e. ‘organized’ religion), as a relative beginning of elements that show artifacts going back much earlier. Our basic point is that the beginnings of ‘religion’ and of ‘civilization’, in the sense of the civilizationalists, are ‘out of sync’. The momentum of this is such as to explain its tenacious resurfacing at points inconvenient to secularists. The Catholic world ends in a grabbag of such elements, including the resurfacing Mariology. This leaves ‘ET2’ as the possible ‘beginning’ of such organized ‘religion’, by a process of elimination. A guess.
As with the Axial period, we might suspect an ‘eonic driver’. It is a very natural suggestion, if only we do not let ourselves become so entranced by wild claims of some primordial Golden Age of Matriarchal utopia. Here, we might reflect that future men, told of a religion of love called ‘Christianity’ might scoff on the grounds that Christian history shows few signs of such an emotion. But such a religion did exist as symbolism! Perhaps the symbolism of matriarchal divinity is the net result of the spiritual sourcing of this first era of religious emergence in a Neolithic goddess orientation. Asking ourselves the question, what is the later eonic evidence for the sources of religion, and having seen them, ask again, could a similar eonic structure account for the traces of later religion in early Sumer, early and later India, etc,…?
Thus our model has suggested, and has some reasonable evidence, that agricultural discovery and its cultural integration are two different processes, the former capable of multiple independent discovery, the latter a phenomenon more typical of a localized eonic transition, perhaps associated with the rise of the first villages or towns. Thus, in The Myth of the Goddess, by Anne Baring and Jules Cashford, stemming from the works of Gimbutas, and others, we have a suggestive description of a broad cultural formation of the type so reminiscent of later religious culture of the patriarchal type.
As the authors suggest, in The Myth of the Goddess, “The picture that is emerging is of a single cultural matrix that underlies and relates all these different areas to each other” in a broad zone from the Balkans to world of the Indus. A ‘unified cultural matrix’, matriarchal or not, is exactly what we suspect, and is a precise description of an ‘unorganized’ religion, for example, and is certainly a candidate for eonic start-up, as a spearhead zone generates the expansion of a cultural type. Our study as a whole shows that it is not impossible or unreasonable to claim the rapid and sudden arising of a seed religious mode in a very brief transitional time-frame. The Axial period shows an exact model of how this can happen, albeit in a patriarchal mode. The list of transitions shows that every period of transition reveals the elements of a religious ‘re-formation’ or ‘neo-formation’.

Tags: religion · The Eonic Effect

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