Poetry Sunday

Some William Blake this foggy morning:

O FOR a voice like thunder, and a tongue
To drown the throat of war! When the senses
Are shaken, and the soul is driven to madness,
Who can stand? When the souls of the oppressed
Fight in the troubled air that rages, who can stand?
When the whirlwind of fury comes from the
Throne of God, when the frowns of his countenance
Drive the nations together, who can stand?
When Sin claps his broad wings over the battle,
And sails rejoicing in the flood of Death;
When souls are torn to everlasting fire,
And fiends of Hell rejoice upon the slain,
O who can stand? O who hath caused this?
O who can answer at the throne of God?
The Kings and Nobles of the Land have done it!
Hear it not, Heaven, thy Ministers have done it!

The etymology of the word sin is very interesting.  Blake used it in a mythological context that stretches all the way back to Ur and Uruk in the form of Nanna, a word we’ve lost the meaning to.  But the Akkadian Sin was a moon god (son of Enlil and Ninlil I might add) and the Semitic word Sin became linked with the Moon. Which is interesting because to the west near Egypt we have that Sinai (Sin-ai) peninsula, and that Mt. Sinai where Moses received the Ten Commandments.  Now apparently there was a Sin city near the Sinai wilderness associated with the Mt. Sinai, and a Sinite tribe who lived in the region. So by extension when Abram left Ur for the west following the voice of the ‘one god’ he left a city associated with Enki, Ur, and his son Nanna or Sin.  Almost as if moon worship traveled to the west and in a wilderness region once upon a time there was a city of the moon, and a holy mountain of the moon, and a people of the moon.  But a strange thing happens when Moses leaves Egypt going east, Mt. Sinai becomes Mt. Horeb, mountain of the sun!

Abraham ibn Ezra apparently noticed this as well and suggested the mountain had two tops, one dedicated to the moon, one dedicated to the sun.  An east side of the moon looking backwards to Ur, and a west side of the sun looking to Heliopolis, the well of the sun and holy city.

A single mountain where sun and moon come together… almost implying a third in the reconciliation of the two in opposition, a trinity.

Almost works as a model, except Sin was male, not female.  Hard to make a leap of faith and get to Sophia or even Artemis and the sisters of the moon. But that still leaves that word sin…how did sin, the moon, become the term it is today in association with religion? I’ve read recently that the original Hebrew connotations suggest sin isn’t transgression as much as ‘straying or missing a mark.’ Failing to hit your target basically, or more precisely the targets God has set for you.   Archery imagery.  Was Sin an archer?  Ra’s mother, Neith, was. Riddles in the dark.

Theme Music: Loreena McKennitt – Lullaby


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