What if the Bible was originally a Shamanic textbook?
What if Eve was the hero of the Garden of Eden?
What if the Bible provides a roadmap to tasting knowledge, breathing in wisdom, experiencing divine vibration?
The name Eve, in Hebrew means “life.” There is a tree in the Garden of Eden also named “life.” In fact, its name is the “Tree of Life.” Rather than forbidden fruit, this tree is the Tree of Eve. It was only later in translation that humankind in general and Eve specifically was forbidden access to Her Tree. (Discussed in 21 Secrets chapter 14, and in more depth in ONE GODS, chapters 10 and 11).
Miriam Robbins Dexter, PhD in linguistics, author of the book Whence the Goddess graciously took the time to read my book and offer notes on the etymologies I used. Her knowledge is not only vast (she found mistakes that only a true expert would have noticed) but she was extremely generous in her sharing of that knowledge. Thank you Miriam. (Whence the Goddess, as well as her other books, can be found on the links page above.) Below are a list of her corrections and clarifications.
pg 86: Clarification: The original city of Ugarit may date to 3000, but the texts themselves date to about 1400 BCE.
Pg 87: Clarification: Ashroterth and Astarte are the same goddess. Ashtoreth is the plural. Miriam Robbins Dexter notes “that the Indo-European words for star — including modern English “star” — seems to have the same root.”
Pg 110. The brother who killed Osiris was Set.
Footnote pg 114: Golan’s actual quote is: “The Sanskrit name for the twins is Asvinau which means ‘possessing horses’ or ‘originating from a horse.’” In other words, Asvinau doesn’t mean “twins,” it is the name of the twins.
Pg. 162. Lilith does not come from the water words but rather they derive from her name. Golan’s quote: “The name of Lilith presumably does not originate from the words for ‘water, pour, rain,’ but conversely, these words derive from the goddess’ name ‘l+t the feminine form of the god’s name ‘l.”
I used the following two etymologies in ONE GODS. Miriam Dexter Robbins noted that they are not correct as far as their etymological connection. It is an interesting conundrum. Are their similarities a co-incidence or something else entirely?
148: In the best-accepted etymology, the Germanic word Hel (hell) is not related to the Greek word Helios; Hel (Hell) means “the hidden place.”
p. 149: Labyrinth is not related to labia; labyrinth was borrowed into Greek from an Old European language spoken on Crete. There would be an unexplained -r- if one tried to explain the two words. Labia (sg. labium) is a Latin word meaning “lip(s)”.
Janet Rudolph, One Gods, The Mystic Pagan’s Guide to the Bible
Janet Rudolph’s insightful interpretation of the Tanakh, the Bible also known as the Old Testament, draws on comparative linguistics, comparative religion, cross-cultural myths, and archaeology, as well as a wholesome world view perceived in the course of her religious training, life experience, travels, and observation of nature. This world view is one of “functional harmony,” or “inter-arching oneness,” uncovered in literal translations of passages from Genesis, presented in Chapter 1. The theme of “inter-arching oneness” influences discussions of ancient Hebrew letters as well as sounds and syllables of the names of God; the life of the prophet Moses, founder of Judaism; the burning bush, symbolic of the interpenetration of spirit and matter; the many-named Venus, morning and evening star; and mythological twins, one mortal and one immortal, for example, Jacob and Esau. Chapter 7 clarifies the concept of “oneness” in terms of related and opposite (dualistic) perspectives, in the process of consolidating the theme with references to poetry and physics. This chapter abounds in summary passages, for instance,
Although the Bible speaks of a “one god”, it is my belief that
Moses’ primary message was the oneness of all creation. Divinities such
as Isis, Venus, and Quetzalcóatl are actually depictions of creation’s one-
ness, appearing as we are able to see them–in the full glory of diversity,
a mystical tapestry with its various threads come to life (p. 117).
Such bridging prepares readers for ensuing adventure: exploration of the divine origin of alphabets; the labyrinth, pilgrimage, and quest; the world tree, with birds in its branches and serpent at its root, pertaining to the feathered serpent shown on the cover of the book; marvelous myths of goddesses inhabiting the tree, and more. The book offers “to Do’s”—activities such as breathing, chanting, and visualization—for those who opt for palpable experiences of oneness.
As Rudolph states at the outset, her theme of inter-arching oneness is both radically old and radically new. Why so? The concept of “oneness” is old, for it is based on ancient spiritual knowledge, for example, the dictate of Hermes Tablet, “as above, so below,” and it is implicit in the Bible, as Rudolph demonstrates. The concept is new because dualistic philosophy and traditional readings of the Bible have obscured “oneness” over the centuries, and scholars are presently referring to the notion “as above, so below” as they attempt to explain dark matter or “nothingness,” which is invisible yet certainly related to human experience.” For example, at a recent conference at Pacifica Graduate Institute in Carpinteria, California, titled “Climates of Change and the Therapy of Ideas” (April 2016), one lecture recurrently referred to the dictum “as above, so below”; another presented research on dark matter while relating macrocosm to microcosm in various ways. Thus, in reading Janet Rudolph’s One Gods, we not only gain better understanding of the Bible and a spectrum of related topics, but also acquire important background for notions explored in depth psychology (as well as biology, physics, cosmology, et al.) today.
Ph.D., Comparative Literature
The Bible as we know it today is actually a mishmash of translations, from ancient Hebrew into Greek and Latin and, from there, into English and a host of other languages. What began as oral lore became written verse, which in turn became holy text.
Much has been lost over the course of these translations—sometimes unintentionally, sometimes deliberately by religious authorities pursuing their own agendas. The earliest earth-based spiritual teachings found in the Bible were actually driven underground, their messages hidden and virtually inaccessible.
In 21 Secrets of the Bible, shamanic practitioner and author Janet Rudolph applies spiritual forensics to scripture and Hebrew hieroglyphics, working backward to their original intent. Join her on a quest to explore long-obscured wisdom and mysteries buried for millennia.
From the mystery that is the story of Adam and Eve, to the breathtaking journey that is Exodus, Rudolph reminds us of the Bible’s multi-layered nature, one that allows for a variety of interpretations —and offers a treasure map to passages between heaven and earth.
Spiritual seekers, shamanic journeyers, and those with an interest in cross-cultural mythology will find Rudolph’s work invaluable as readers look back in order to look forward.
Rachel Pollack wrote the following about ONE GODS
A fascinating book. Janet Rudolph has done some strong research, much deeper than the usual deconstruction of patriarchal myths and Bible passages. I really like the respect and awareness she brings to the Hebrew scriptures, along with a strong cross-cultural approach.
Rachel Pollock is a maven-extraordinaire of the Tarot, creator of The Shining Tribe Tarot and author of many books including The Child Eater and Seventy-Eight Degrees of Wisdom: A Book of Tarot.
The cover image is done by my dear friend, Ecuadorian Medicine Woman, Cantadora and Visionary Artist, Susana Tapia Leon. The title of the image is BREATH OF LIFE.
The serpent is a long time symbol of healing. The rising energies of the serpent are known in other other cultures as Ki, Chi, Kundalini. We use the symbol of the rising serpents in our healing iconography – the caduceus. The central staff of the caduceus is a representation of the world tree and the rising serpents on each side cross at significant points until they rise to the top and sprout wings. The symbol of the serpent on a pole/world tree as an agent of healing appears in the Bible:
And the LORD said unto Moses
Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it on a pole:
and it shall come to pass, that eery one that is bitten,
when he looketh upon it, shall live.
And Moses made a serpent of brass, and put it upon a pole,
and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any man,
when he beheld the serpent of brass, he lived.
Serpents as energies of healing is are truly multi-cultural symbols. The image above is from the cover of my book One Gods: The Mystic Pagan’s Guide to the Bible. It is in the Museo Nacional De Antrolopología in Mexico City. Its accompanying description says scholars consider it to be a rising snail. The description also depicts it as an Aztecan symbol of life. This makes it possible, even likely, that it is actually the emblem of Quetzalcóatl the feathered serpent. In this image he is rising from a feathered or rayed symbol of the sun.