While hallucinogens are associated with shamanism, it is alcohol that is associated with paganism.

To me, the “male god” seems to have either emerged or become prominent around 7,000 years ago, whereas the now favored monotheism “male god” is more like 4,000 years ago or so. To me, the “female goddess” seems to have either emerged or become prominent around 11,000-10,000 years ago or so, losing the majority of its once prominence around 2,000 years ago due largely to the now favored monotheism “male god” that grow in prominence after 4,000 years ago or so. 

My Thought on the Evolution of Gods?

Animal protector deities from old totems/spirit animal beliefs come first to me, 13,000/12,000 years ago, then women as deities 11,000/10,000 years ago, then male gods around 7,000/8,000 years ago. Moralistic gods around 5,000/4,000 years ago, and monotheistic gods around 4,000/3,000 years ago. 

In my prehistory art in this blog, I offer my speculations relating to art with possible religious/supernatural thinking which I think are justified, or reasoned speculations/conjectures.

My thoughts on speculations/conjectures:

Unreasoned speculations/conjectures

Wild speculations/conjectures

Loose speculations/conjectures

Justified speculations/conjectures

Reasoned speculations/conjectures

Sound/proven speculations/conjectures

Damien Marie AtHope’s Art

ref, refref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref 

Raqefet Cave

13,000-year-old stone mortars offers the earliest known physical evidence

of an extensive ancient beer-brewing operation.

“The find comes on the heels of a July report that archaeologists working in northeastern Jordan discovered the charred remains of bread baked by Natufians some 11,600 to 14,600 years ago. According to the Stanford scientists, the ancient beer residue comes from 11,700 to 13,700 years old. Through laboratory analysis, other archaeological evidence found in the cave, and the wear of the stones, the team discovered that the ancient Natufians used species from seven plant families, “including wheat or barley, oat, legumes and bast fibers (including flax),” according to the article. “They packed plant-foods, including malted wheat/barley, in fiber-made containers and stored them in boulder mortars. They used bedrock mortars for pounding and cooking plant-foods, including brewing wheat/barley-based beer likely served in ritual feasts ca. 13,000 years ago,” the scientists write. “It has long been speculated that the thirst for beer may have been the stimulus behind cereal domestication, which led to a major social-technological change in human history; but this hypothesis has been highly controversial,” the Stanford authors say. “We report here of the earliest archaeological evidence for cereal-based beer brewing by a semi-sedentary, foraging people.” ref

“Beer making was an integral part of rituals and feasting, a social regulatory mechanism in hierarchical societies,” said Stanford’s Wang. The Raqefet Cave discovery of the first man-made alcohol production, the cave also provides one of the earliest pieces of evidence of the use of flower beds on gravesites, discovered under human skeletons. “The Natufian remains in Raqefet Cave never stop surprising us,” co-author Prof. Dani Nadel, of the University of Haifa’s Zinman Institute of Archaeology, said in a press release. “We exposed a Natufian burial area with about 30 individuals, a wealth of small finds such as flint tools, animal bones, and ground stone implements, and about 100 stone mortars and cupmarks. Some of the skeletons are well-preserved and provided direct dates and even human DNA, and we have evidence for flower burials and wakes by the graves.” ref

“And now, with the production of beer, the Raqefet Cave remains provide a very vivid and colorful picture of Natufian lifeways, their technological capabilities, and inventions,” he said. Stanford’s Liu posited that the beer production was of a religious nature because its production was found near a graveyard. “This discovery indicates that making alcohol was not necessarily a result of agricultural surplus production, but it was developed for ritual purposes and spiritual needs, at least to some extent, prior to agriculture,” she said. “Alcohol making and food storage were among the major technological innovations that eventually led to the development of civilizations in the world, and archaeological science is a powerful means to help reveal their origins and decode their contents,” said Liu. “We are excited to have the opportunity to present our findings, which shed new light on a deeper history of human society.” ref

Religion and Alcohol

The world’s religions have had differing relationships with alcohol. Many religions forbid alcoholic consumption or see it as sinful or negative. Others have allocated a specific place for it, such as in the Christian practice of using wine during the Eucharist rite. Hinduism does not have a central authority which is followed by all Hindus, though religious texts forbid the use or consumption of alcohol. In Śruti texts such as Vedas and Upanishads which are the most authoritative texts in Hinduism and considered apauruṣeya, which means “not of a man, superhuman”, all alcoholic drinks or intoxication are considered as a recipe of sinfulness, weakness, failure, and destruction in several verses.” ref

Judaism relates to the consumption of alcohol, particularly of wine, in a complex manner. Wine is viewed as a substance of import and it is incorporated in religious ceremonies, and the general consumption of alcoholic beverages is permitted, however, inebriation (drunkenness) is discouraged. This compound approach to wine can be viewed in the verse in Psalms 104:15, “Wine gladdens human hearts,” countered by the verses in Proverbs 20:1, “Wine is a mocker, strong drink is riotous; and whoever stumbles in it is not wise,” and Proverbs 23:20, “Be not among drunkards or among gluttonous eaters of meat.”  Christian views on alcohol are varied. Throughout the first 1,800 years of Church historyChristians generally consumed alcoholic beverages as a common part of everyday life and used “the fruit of the vine” in their central rite—the Eucharist or Lord’s Supper. They held that both the Bible and Christian tradition taught that alcohol is a gift from God that makes life more joyous, but that over-indulgence leading to drunkenness is sinful or at least a vice.” ref

“Observant Buddhists typically avoid consuming alcohol (surāmerayamajja, referring to types of intoxicating fermented beverages), as it violates the 5th of the Five Precepts, the basic Buddhist code of ethics, and can disrupt mindfulness and impede one’s progress in the Noble Eightfold Path. In Jainism alcohol consumption of any kind is not allowed, neither are there any exceptions like occasional or social drinking. The most important reason against alcohol consumption is the effect of alcohol on the mind and soul. In Jainism, any action or reaction that alter or impacts the mind is violence (himsa) towards own self, which is a five-sense human being. Violence to other five sense beings or to own self is violence. Jains do not consume fermented foods (beer, wine, and other alcohols) to avoid killing of a large number of microorganisms associated with the fermenting process. An initiated Sikh cannot use or consume intoxicants, of which wine is one.” ref

In the Quran, khamr, meaning “wine”, is variably referenced as an incentive from Satan, as well as a cautionary note against its adverse effect on human attitude in several verses: such as, O you who have believed, indeed, intoxicants, gambling, [sacrificing on] stone altars [to other than Allah], and divining arrows are but defilement from the work of Satan, so avoid it that you may be successful. — Surat 5:90 AND Satan only wants to cause between you animosity and hatred through intoxicants and gambling and to avert you from the remembrance of Allah and from prayer. So will you not desist? — Surat 5:91 Whereas Sake is often consumed as part of Shinto purification rituals in Japan. Sakes served to gods as offerings prior to drinking are called Omiki. People drink Omiki with gods to communicate with them and to solicit rich harvests the following year.” ref

Older Historical Religions and Alcohol

In Ancient Egyptian religion, beer and wine were drunk and offered to the gods in rituals and festivals. Beer and wine were also stored with the mummified dead in Egyptian burials. Other ancient religious practices like Chinese ancestor worship, Sumerian and Babylonian religion used alcohol as offerings to gods and to the deceased. The Mesopotamian cultures had various wine gods and a Chinese imperial edict (c. 1,116 BCE) states that drinking alcohol in moderation is prescribed by Heaven.” ref

“IN MESOPOTAMIA, evidence of winemaking from the fourth millennium BCE (the late Uruk period) has been found in the city-states of Uruk and Tello in southern Iraq and the Elamite capital of Susa in Iran. The Babylonian and Egyptian found that if they crushed grapes or warmed and moisten grain, the covered mush would bubble and produce drink with a kick. Ancient beer was thick and nutritious. The fermentation process added essential B vitamins and amino acids converted from yeast. Mesopotamians drank beer and wine but seemed to have preferred beer. By some estimates forty percent of the wheat from Sumerian harvest went to make beer. Thus lends credence to the beer theory, that man switched to agriculture so that people could to settle down and grow grain so they sit around and drink beer together on small villages.” ref

“It has been argued that beer was preferred over wine because beer-producing barley grows better in the hot, dry climate of southern Iraq than wine-producing grapes. Cylinder seals from the Early Dynastic period (2900-2350 BCE) show monarchs and the courtiers drinking beer from large jars with straws. Another beverage, possibly wine, was consumed from hand-held cups and goblets. Cuneiform tablets show allocations of beer and wine for royal occasions. One tablet from northeastern Syria allocates 80 liters of the “best quality beer” to honor “the man from Babylon.” By 700 BCE, the Phrgyians in present-day Turkey were drinking an alcoholic beverage made from wine, barley beer, and honey mead. For hangovers, the Assyrians consumed a mixture of ground bird’s beaks and myrrh.” ref

“In the ancient Mediterranean world, the Cult of Dionysus and the Orphic mysteries used wine as part of their religious practices. During Dionysian festivals and rituals, wine was drunk as way to reach ecstatic states along with music and dance. Intoxication from alcohol was seen as a state of possession by spirit of the god of wine Dionysus. Religious drinking festivals called Bacchanalia were popular in Italy and associated with the gods Bacchus and Liber. These Dionysian rites were frequently outlawed by the Roman Senate. In the Norse religion the drinking of ales and meads was important in several seasonal religious festivals such as Yule and Midsummer as well as more common festivities like wakes, christenings, and ritual sacrifices called Blóts. Neopagan and Wiccan religions also allow for the use of alcohol for ritual purposes as well as for recreation.” ref

Nectar of the Gods: Alcoholic Mythology

Here are a handful of stories from around the globe that illustrate the long-time love of alcohol that connects the world. Norse mythology tells of Aegir, the ale brewer of the gods, who held a big party for honored guests every winter. The party was held inside a great hall whose floor was littered with glittering gold, providing enough light that no fires were necessary for illumination. The special beer for the event was brewed in a giant cauldron given to him by Thor and served in magical cups that refilled as soon as they were empty. He even had a couple of loyal servants who distributed food and otherwise cared for the guests’ needs. The shindig was the highlight of the social season and all the gods attended. However, like so many off-campus college parties, alcohol and animosity could sometimes spoil a perfectly good evening.” ref

“According to the Poetic Edda, a collection of mythological poems, the party started off great, with everyone drinking and eating and telling stories. As they sat down for the big feast, the inebriated guests offered praise to the two lowly servants, Fimafeng and Eldir. The snobby rich kid of the gods, Loki, in his drunken arrogance, took offense to the gesture, feeling the servants were not worth such accolades, and killed Fimafeng. The others kicked him out of the party for being a jerk, but he returned shortly after, demanding to be shown some respect and allowed back at the table. Loki didn’t get away unharmed, though. Skaoi, one of the goddesses he insulted that night, caught up with the god and tied him to a rock. Above his naked body, she hung a poisonous snake, whose fangs dripped acidic venom into a small dish, held up by Loki’s wife, Sigyn. Whenever the dish filled, she had to pull it away and pour the venom on the ground. This meant the venom would occasionally drip onto her husband, causing him immense pain. According to legend, Loki’s violent writhing is what causes earthquakes. Of course, this could have all been avoided if Loki had simply known when to say when.” ref

The Aztec drink of choice was pulque, a syrupy, pulpy alcohol made from the fermented sap of the agave plant. Pulque was available to almost everyone, but most people were cut off after four cups. The elderly, on the other hand, had earned as many cups as they could handle. The priests were also able to drink as much as they wanted in order to commune with the gods – and work up the nerve to commit human sacrifices. A believer’s drunkenness was measured on a scale of rabbits, with two or three rabbits being a petty good buzz, all the way up to 400, which we can only imagine meant, “poke him with a stick and see if he’s dead.” So the next time you’re doing tequila shots with friends, instead of saying “three sheets to the wind,” perhaps you could say you’re “at least 10 rabbits in” and pay a little honor to Mayahuel, Patecatl, and their 400 kids.” ref

List of Deities of Wine and Beer

“Deities of wine and beer include a number of agricultural deities associated with the fruits and grains used to produce alcoholic beverages, as well as the processes of fermentation and distillation.

“Beer goddess:

Damien Marie AtHope’s Art

ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, refrefrefrefrefref

1. Kebaran culture 23,022-16,522 Years Ago, 2. Kortik Tepe 12,422-11,722 Years Ago, 3. Jerf el-Ahmar 11,222 -10,722 Years Ago, 4. Gobekli Tepe 11,152-9,392 Years Ago, 5. Tell Al-‘abrUbaid and Uruk Periods, 6. Nevali Cori 10,422 -10,122 Years Ago, 7. Catal Hoyuk 9,522-7,722 Years Ago

Damien Marie AtHope’s Art

Paganism (beginning around 12,000 years ago)

Paganism (such as that seen in Turkey: 12,000 years ago). Gobekli Tepe: “first human-made temple” around 12,000 years ago. Sedentism and the Creation of goddesses around 12,000 years ago as well as male gods after 7,000 years ago. Pagan-Shaman burial in Israel 12,000 years ago and 12,000 – 10,000 years old Paganistic-Shamanistic Art in a Remote Cave in Egypt. Skull Cult around 11,500 to 8,400 Years Ago and Catal Huyuk “first religious designed city” around 10,000 years ago.

Paganism is approximately a 12,000-year-old belief system and believe in spirit-filled life and/or afterlife that can be attached to or be expressed in things or objects and these objects can be used by special persons or in special rituals that can connect to spirit-filled life and/or afterlife and who are guided/supported by a goddess/god, goddesses/gods, magical beings, or supreme spirits. If you believe like this, regardless of your faith, you are a hidden paganist.

Around 12,000 years ago, in Turkey, the first evidence of paganism is Gobekli Tepe: “first human-made temple” and around 9,500 years ago, in Turkey, the second evidence of paganism is Catal Huyuk “first religious designed city”. In addition, early paganism is connected to Proto-Indo-European language and religion. Proto-Indo-European religion can be reconstructed with confidence that the gods and goddesses, myths, festivals, and form of rituals with invocations, prayers, and songs of praise make up the spoken element of religion. Much of this activity is connected to the natural and agricultural year or at least those are the easiest elements to reconstruct because nature does not change and because farmers are the most conservative members of society and are best able to keep the old ways.

The reconstruction of goddesses/gods characteristics may be different than what we think of and only evolved later to the characteristics we know of today. One such characteristic is how a deity’s gender may not be fixed, since they are often deified forces of nature, which tend to not have genders. There are at least 40 deities and the Goddesses that have been reconstructed are: *Pria*Pleto*Devi*Perkunos*Aeusos, and *Yama.

The reconstruction of myths can be connected to Proto-Indo-European culture/language and by additional research, many of these myths have since been confirmed including some areas that were not accessible to the early writers such as Latvian folk songs and Hittite hieroglyphic tablets. There are at least 28 myths and one of the most widely recognized myths of the Indo-Europeans is the myth, “Yama is killed by his brother Manu” and “the world is made from his body”. Some of the forms of this myth in various Indo-European languages are about the Creation Myth of the Indo-Europeans.

The reconstruction of rituals can be connected to Proto-Indo-European culture/language and is estimated to have been spoken as a single language from around 6,500 years ago. One of the earliest ritual is the construction of kurgans or mound graves as a part of a death ritual. kurgans were inspired by common ritual-mythological ideas. Kurgans are complex structures with internal chambers. Within the burial chamber at the heart of the kurgan, elite individuals were buried with grave goods and sacrificial offerings, sometimes including horses and chariots.

The speakers of Pre-Proto-Indo-European lived in Turkey and it associates the distribution of historical Indo-European languages with the expansion around 9,000 years ago, with a proposed homeland of Proto-Indo-European proper in the Balkans around 7,000 years ago. The Proto-Indo-European Religion seemingly stretches at least back around 6,000 years ago or likely much further back and I believe Paganism is possibly an approximately 12,000-year-old belief system.

The earliest kurgans date to 6,000 years ago and are connected to the Proto-Indo-European in the Caucasus. In fact, around 7,000 years ago, there appears to be pre-kurgan in Siberia. Around 7,000 to 2,500 years ago and beyond, kurgans were built with ancient traditions still active in Southern Siberia and Central Asia, which display the continuity of the archaic forming methods. Kurgan cultures are divided archaeologically into different sub-cultures such as Timber GravePit GraveScythianSarmatianHunnish, and KumanKipchak. Kurgans have been found from the Altay Mountains to the Caucasus, Ukraine, Romania, and Bulgaria. Around 5,000 years ago, kurgans were used in the Ukrainian and Russian flat unforested grasslands, and their use spread with migration into eastern, central, and northern Europe, Turkey, and beyond. refrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefref, & ref

Paganism:

“Goddesses around 12,000 years ago then Male Gods after 7,000 years ago”

Sedentism and the Creation of goddesses around 12,000 years ago
as well as male gods after 7,000 years ago.

Sedentism and the Creation of goddesses around 12,000 years ago as well as male gods after 7,000 years ago. I relation to the birth of gods I surmise that Sedentism and agricultural revolution (beginning 12,000 lasting until around 4,000 years ago when it was a general norm) is involved in the Creation of goddesses around 12,000 years ago as well as male gods after 7,000 years ago. First Patriarchy: Split of Women’s Status around 12,000 years ago & First Hierarchy: fall of Women’s Status around 5,000 years ago with the first Egyptian dynasty.

To me, first, there are the pre-goddesses, the metaphorical clan ancestor magic attached to animistic-totemic concepts (as seen in the Aurignacian Culture), then shamanistic-totemistic “Great Women, Mothers, and Grandmothers” spirit-magic concepts (as seen in the Gravettian Culture / Epigravettian Cuture). Most metaphorical shamanistic/pre-paganistic-totemistic pre-sitting-goddesses (as seen in the Magdalenian Cuture). 

Damien Marie AtHope’s Art

refrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefref, refrefrefrefrefrefrefref

First Slavery?

For all the talk about early goddesses believed to demonstrate women’s empowerment, let’s not forget there may be some hidden darkness women still may have had to endure, even as women were likely seen as sacred. Such as, seen at the site of Kostenki, Russia could be seen as a possible evidence as far as enslaving people. Thus, slavery may go back to 30,000 years ago if we are saying the first slavery it seems to have been women. ref

Magdalenian expansion

Magdalenian expansion moved out and adapted in the harsh lands before any climatic improvement led to inventing weapons, a conquering mythology, long-distance relays, flexibility in control over all kinds of environments, ritual delegation by shamanism, the “descent” of the mythical decoration of rock walls in favor of mobile ritual art like sacred woman figures and pendants or portable altars can be seen a “proof” by their simple spread on a map indicating waves of Magdalenian expansion appears to be around 14,000 years ago at Maszycka and corresponds to the core that would lead to the plains civilizations (Hamburgian and Creswellian) that a too rapid look tends to confuse with the phantom of a “Northern Magdalenian”, while these are actually entirely new civilizations, certainly with Magdalenian souvenirs, but recomposed a thousand other ways. We should thus view the expansion of the Magdalenian civilization as a series of successive waves rather than by a single population movement, as the dates (14,000-12,000 years ago), the arts and techniques demonstrate with eloquence. From the Middle Magdalenian, the whole of the hilly regions of Europe appears to have been colonized (Maszycka, Nebra, and Oelknitz at 14,000 years ago). Although, other waves contribute to the Late Magdalenian (13,000-12,000 years ago): Chaleux, Gönnersdorf, Monruz. ref

However, up to then, each could be attached to the original evolution in the Périgord, as if this metropolis created concepts regularly transmitted and transposed to pioneer, peripheral and distant frontiers. Art is particularly explicit at this stage: entirely naturalistic, it diversifies its themes while remaining within the animal register. Only feminine schemas suggest human contours, but conversely, rigorously codified to the limits of abstraction and reduced to a conventional sign. There are two forms of contemporaneous plastic language, sometimes in the same ensembles (e.g., Gönnersdorf), once again demonstrating the rigor of the codes, and thus the collective thought during the Magdalenian, regardless of the context. Such huge migrations and confronting unceasing challenges, this pioneering population as well as their technology and mythology began to crumble and became diluted across these immense expanses, where new generations could create their own myths. The widespread adoption of the bow, light armatures, with truncated point and shouldered base, this hunter-gatherer world reflects an entirely different relationship between man and nature, totally indentured. ref

Paganism of the Neolithic is not far off and the Female human image is present in what remains of symbolic and simplified stylized art, as a definitive sign of the appropriation of nature, well before and independent of Neolithic domestication the clanging hunter-gatherer world has shifted to that of predators in which nature becomes a
resource to exploit rather than an integral part of human life, now life proceeds by ritualized and controlled exchanges. This key difference shatters the old paradigm and is to me, part of the emergence of pre-paganism. Domestication logically soon follows this new emerging paradigm shift, but one may assume that such a phase may have been a need to involve natural world control dynamics over the environmental resources that anchor a religiousness and the pre-goddess connections and other pre-neolithic revolution pieces of evidence. ref

At the same time, the importance gained for human figures in art shows the same change because they indicate the presence of “pre-goddess deities”, that is to say, likely superior forces connected to a clan or metaphorical great grandmother spirit pendants and other, such as seen in the Venus figurines of Gönnersdorf. and a male clan leader/ancestor hunting cult with Magdalenian connections to the Phallus Phenomena (A Bull Horn) and the Shamanism Phenomena and a Possible Clan Leader/Special “MALE” Ancestor hunting cult connections with a phallus, the ideological change is one of the most dramatic because humanity shifts from Simplistic mythology (illustrated stories in simple art and basic rituals) to pre-organized religion (creating a place for the emerging gods). All human appearances prior to the Bölling were dissimulated (in animal forms), deformed (such as masks) or highly schematic (sexual signs). While the representations had meaning (and this is evident in the sacred art). It seems this new control and developing ritualization are shown both in the relationship to prey and to human images. Still, up to the present, the human figure would be the iconographic foundation and animal separated as favorable (domesticated herds) and unfavorable (wild and dangerous). ref

Southern Spain suggests an elongated continuation in Upper Andalusia a large region of hills, rivers, and farmland bordering Spain’s southern coast and possibly only a shortened occurrence of the Geometric facies? The following Neolithic was tripartite, with two stages – Early and Late Neolithic (Cardial I and II) also affects Andalusia, bordering Spain’s southern coast. Thus, on the one hand, Early Neolithic and Middle Neolithic mingled together and on the other hand, Early Neolithic sites are relatively rare or nearly absent and there is no typological difference between Early and Middle Neolithic. During the Early Neolithic, the relevance of domestic animals and cereals is estimated as fairly marginal therefor seeming to indicate the maintenance of hunting or that hunting remained essential for the subsistence of Early Neolithic people. Neolithic economy increased stepwise with domesticates (predominantly sheep and goat) and agriculture to various amounts. Pastoralism dominates the lifeway. Settlers maintained mobility and gathered complementary wild plants and products. So generally material culture and Neolithic elements vary severely in the Early Neolithic settlements. There are sites with evidence of a dominant Neolithic lifestyle contemporaneously more or less side by side with sites where settlers profit only from single Neolithic innovations. This could be due to a real difference in lifestyles or to a settlement system with different site types. Agriculture and sedentariness increased in later Neolithic and the subsequent periods with a gradual character adding more and more agricultural indicators until an initial Full-Neolithic. ref

Geographical distribution of the figurines and female silhouettes of the GÖNNERSDORF type.

Here are some examples of this type: from left to right, at different scales, the statuette of Courbet (France); Neuchatel Pendant-Monruz (Switzerland); Enval figurine, (France); Parietal art by Grotta Di Pozzo (Italy).

The Venus figurines from Gönnersdorf, at Neuwied, are paleolithic sculptures depicting the female body.

The figures consist of carved bone, antler or Mammoth tusk ivory. They are between 15,000 and 11,500 years old and stem from the Magdalenian period. These figurines are between 5.4 and 8.7 cm long. At the same place, many engravings of animals, human beings and abstract signs on slate stone were found. The depictions of human beings were much stylized. Most often women were depicted, always in profile without a head. ref

The Magdalenian civilization is unique, abstract and realistic art, social rules, group exchanges, and such strengths led to its wide territorial expansion into regions formerly considered “uninhabitable”. In these new, immense geographic zones, the Magdalenian culture became thin, less substantial, and other civilizations emerged from it (Creswellian, Hamburgian, Ahrensburgian, Tjongerian, Azilian). ref

Among all these clades, the subhaplogroups H1 and H3 have been subject to a more detailed study and would be associated with the Magdalenian expansion from SW Europe at least around 13,000 years ago. ref

Complete sequencing of 62 mitochondrial DNAs (mtDNAs) belonging (or very closely related) to haplogroup H revealed that this mtDNA haplogroup—by far the most common in Europe—is subdivided into numerous subhaplogroups, with at least 15 of them (H1–H15) identifiable by characteristic mutations. All the haplogroup H mtDNAs found in 5,743 subjects from 43 populations were then screened for diagnostic markers of subhaplogroups H1 and H3. This survey showed that both subhaplogroups display frequency peaks, centered in Iberia and surrounding areas, with distributions declining toward the northeast and southeast—a pattern extremely similar to that previously reported for mtDNA haplogroup V. Furthermore, the coalescence ages of H1 and H3 (∼11,000 years) are close to that previously reported for V. H3 is found throughout the whole of Europe and in the Maghreb but does not exist in the Far East and is believed to have originated among Mesolithic hunter-gatherers in south-western Europe between 9 000 and 11 000 years ago. These findings have major implications for the origin of Europeans since they attest that the Franco-Cantabrian refuge area was indeed the source of late-glacial expansions of hunter-gatherers that repopulated much of Central and Northern Europe from ∼15,000 years ago. ref

Study results are compatible with a pioneer colonization of northeastern Iberia at the Early Neolithic characterized by the arrival of small genetically distinctive groups, showing cultural and genetic connections with the Near East. ref


The relevant genetic populations in western Eurasia at the beginning of this story (around 7000 BC) are five. We’ll start with the first two:

  • ♥ Western Hunter-Gatherers or WHG*: this genetic population cluster occupied much of southern and western Europe at this time. In the north and east they abutted…
  • ♥ Eastern Hunter-Gatherers or EHG*: this genetic population are a kind of hybrid between WHG and a population from the steppe known as Ancestral North Eurasians (ANE, currently represented by one much older ancient DNA sample known as Ma’lta from the Lake Baikal Area).

*These labels are those used by researchers in ancient genetics for the genetic clusters which they’ve identified.

The boundary between WHG and EHG passed west to east through the Baltic region, dividing the Baltic states in the east before taking a southward turn to join the Black Sea at its western end. Populations either side of the boundary appear to be hybrids between WHG and EHG (e.g. Scandinavian Hunter-Gatherers or SHG and Ukraine_Mesolithic), although there may be other minor components in the Balkans.

In the south-east, there are three other populations:

  • ♥ Anatolian_Neolithic: this population, located in Anatolia, is important in spreading farming to all of the Balkans, western Europe and parts of the Ukraine between 7000 and 4000 BC. Unfortunately, the predecessors of AN in Anatolia have not yet been reported on. It is possible that it’s made up of a mix of earlier populations from the Balkans, Levant and Iran (due to their genetic similarity, on the diagram I’ve just lumped Anatolia and the Levant together in blue).
  • ♥ Iran_Neolithic: this population, found in NW Iran, shows some possible connection with modern south Asian populations.
  • ♥ Caucasus Hunter Gatherers or CHG: this population, found in the Caucasus of course, could be a mixture of Iran_Neolithic and mixed EHG/WHG populations, perhaps from the steppe, but also needs to include another, unknown population (NB I’ve lumped these last two related populations together as yellow as it was just becoming too messy with them separate).

These three populations appear to have interacted and mixed to some extent in the middle east in the period between 7000 BC and 4000 BC.


Haplogroup I-M170 they estimate time to 24,000 ±7,100 years ago and time to population divergence as 23,000 ±7,700 years ago. The time to subclade divergence of I1 and I2 to be 28,400 ±5,100 years ago, although they calculate the STR variation age of I1 at only 8,100 ±1,500 years ago. The speculated initial dispersion of this population corresponds to the diffusion of the Gravettian culture. Later along with two cases of Haplogroup C, belonging to the culture and in individuals of the Magdalenian and Azilian cultures. It has been thought that each of the ancestral populations now dominated by a particular subclade of Haplogroup I-M170 experienced an independent population expansion immediately after the Last Glacial Maximum. The role of the Balkans as a long-standing corridor to Europe from Anatolia and/or the Caucasus is shown by the common phylogenetic origins of both haplogroups I and J in the parent haplogroup IJ (M429). This common ancestry suggests that the subclades of IJ entered the Balkans from Anatolia or the Caucasus, some time before the Last Glacial Maximum. I and J were subsequently distributed in Asia and Europe in a disjunctive phylogeographic pattern typical of “sibling” haplogroups. A natural geographical corridor like the Balkans is likely to have been used later by members of other subclades of IJ, as well as other haplogroups, including those associated with Early European Farmers. ref

 

The high proportion of Near Eastern ancestry shows that connections between the continents of Africa and Eurasia began much earlier than many previously thought.

The Iberomaurusian is a backed bladelet lithic industry found near the coasts of Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia. It is also known from a single major site in Libya, the Haua Fteah, where the industry is locally known as the Eastern Oranian. The Iberomaurusian seems to have appeared around the time of the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM), around 25,000 to 22,500 years ago until around 11,000 years ago. ref

The Eburran industry is the name of an East African tool assemblage that dates from 15,000 years ago and thereafter, found around Lake Nakuru in the Ol Doinyo Eburru volcano complex in the Rift ValleyKenya. The culture was at one time known as the “Kenyan Capsian” because findings resemble those of the North African Capsian trans-Saharan culture. It was also formerly called the “Kenyan Aurignacian.” Eburran assemblages, as recovered from Gamble’s Cave and Nderit Drift, comprise large backed blades, crescent microlithsburins, and endscrapers. Some tools at Gamble’s Cave were made from obsidianref

DNA from Morocco shows human populations had links which stretched across continents as far back as 25,000 years ago. Experts sequenced nuclear DNA from people who lived around 15,000 years ago. Connections between Africa and the Levant date back earlier than thought. The region’s Iberomaurusian inhabitants were first to produce fine stone tools. Two-thirds of their heritage is related to populations from the Near East. A further one-third is most similar to modern sub-Saharan Africans. A burial site in Grotte des Pigeons, near Taforalt in Morocco, which is associated with the Iberomaurusian culture. ref

The Iberomaurusians, who lived around 20,000 years to 10,000 years ago, are believed to be the first in the area to produce finer stone tools, known as microliths. DNA evidence revealed that around two-thirds of their heritage is related to populations from the Levant, a historical geographical region that encompasses the modern nations of Cyprus, Israel, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Palestine, Syria and parts of Turkey. A further one-third is most similar to modern sub-Saharan Africans, in particular West Africans. Analysis shows that North Africa and the Near East, even at this early time, were part of one region without much of a genetic barrier. Clearly, human populations were interacting much more with groups from other, more distant areas, than was previously assumed. It is part of the African continent, but the Sahara Desert presents a substantial barrier to travel to and from southern regions. ref

The ancient Iberomaurusians appear to be related to Middle Easterners and shared about two-thirds of their genetic ancestry with Natufians, hunter-gatherers who lived in the Middle East 14,500 to 11,000 years ago, and one-third with sub-Saharan Africans who were most closely related to today’s West Africans and the Hadza of Tanzania.

The Iberomaurusians 25,000 to 11,000 years ago, lived before the Natufians 14,000 to 12,000 years ago, but they were not their direct ancestors: The Natufians lack DNA from Africa. This suggests that both groups inherited their shared DNA from a larger population that lived in North Africa or the Middle East more than 15,000 years ago. All this offers the first glimpse of the deep history of North Africans, who today have a large amount of European DNA. ref

Indisputably, there exists during phase Ib1 of the Final Natufian a very strong link between the living and their dead – being grouped together in a common space.

This feeling is reinforced by the fact that some of the dead are deposited directly on the structures or the floors without preliminary digging of a pit (this is the case in particular of H156 and H157). Such co-existence was never clearly shown for the Early or Late Natufian. Except for a few exceptions, burial space was always regarded as being in close proximity to, but not co-mingled, with habitation space. This co-mingling of burial and living spaces appears all the more remarkable because almost all graves from the previous period at Mallaha were grouped together in a well-defined zone remote from the houses (Perrot and Ladiray, 1988). The custom of grouping the graves shows a long-term continuity (probably over several generations) and the term of “cemetery” seems fully justified in this context. Thus, the Final Natufian marks a rupture in the organization of funerary space when compared to the Late Natufian. Most of these primary burials are also single ones. ref

The origins of the ancient Moroccans, known as the Iberomaurusians

About 15,000 years ago, in the oldest known cemetery in the world, people buried their dead in sitting positions with beads and animal horns, deep in a cave in what is now Morocco. These people were also found with small, sophisticated stone arrowheads and points, and 20th century archaeologists assumed they were part of an advanced European culture that had migrated across the Mediterranean Sea to North Africa. But now, their ancient DNA—the oldest ever obtained from Africans—shows that these people had no European ancestry. Instead, they were related to both Middle Easterners and sub-Saharan Africans, suggesting that more people were migrating in and out of North Africa than previously believed. ref

E-M215 carrying men directly from North Africa to southwestern Europe, via a maritime route:

Natufian skeletal remains from the ancient Levant predominantly carried the Y-DNA haplogroup E1b1b. Of the five Natufian specimens analysed for paternal lineages, three belonged to the E1b1b1b2(xE1b1b1b2a,E1b1b1b2b), E1b1(xE1b1a1,E1b1b1b1) and E1b1b1b2(xE1b1b1b2a,E1b1b1b2b) subclades (60%). Haplogroup E1b1b was also found at moderate frequencies among fossils from the ensuing Pre-Pottery Neolithic B culture, with the E1b1b1 and E1b1b1b2(xE1b1b1b2a,E1b1b1b2b) subclades observed in two of seven PPNB specimens (~29%). The scientists suggest that the Levantine early farmers may have spread southward into East Africa, bringing along Western Eurasian and Basal Eurasian ancestral components separate from that which would arrive later in North Africa. No affinity of Natufians to sub-Saharan Africans is evident in the genome-wide analysis.

Additionally, haplogroup E1b1b1 has been found in an ancient Egyptian mummy excavated at the Abusir el-Meleq archaeological site in Middle Egypt, which dates from a period between the late New Kingdom and the Roman era. Fossils at the Iberomaurusian site of Ifri n’Amr or Moussa in Morocco, which have been dated to around 7,000 years ago, also carried haplotypes related to the E1b1b1b1a (E-M81) subclade. These ancient individuals bore a Maghrebi genomic component that peaks among modern North Africans, indicating that they were ancestral to populations in the area.

The clade-bearing individuals that were analysed for paternal DNA were inhumed at the Tenerife site, with all of these specimens found to belong to the E1b1b1b1a1 or E-M183 subclade (3/3; 100%).DNA from seven ancient Iberomaurusian individuals from the Grotte des Pigeons near Taforalt in eastern Morocco. The fossils were directly dated to between 15,100 and 13,900 calibrated years before present. The scientists found that five male specimens with sufficient nuclear DNA preservation belonged to the E1b1b1a1 (M78) subclade, with one skeleton bearing the E1b1b1a1b1 parent lineage to E-V13, another male specimen belonged to E1b1b (M215*). In Africa, E-M215 is distributed in highest frequencies in the Horn of Africa and North Africa, whence it has in recent millennia expanded as far south as South Africa, and northwards into Western Asia and Europe (especially the Mediterranean and the Balkans).

Almost all E-M215 men are also in E-M35. In 2004, M215 was found to be older than M35 when individuals were found who have the M215 mutation, but do not have M35 mutation. One individual in Khorasan, North-East Iran, was found to be positive for M215 but negative for M35. E-M215 and E-M35 are quite common among Afroasiatic speakers. The linguistic group and carriers of E-M35 lineage have a high probability to have arisen and dispersed together from the Afroasiatic Urheimat. Amongst populations with an Afro-Asiatic speaking history, a significant proportion of Jewish male lineages are E-M35. Haplogroup E-M35, which accounts for approximately 18% to 20% of Ashkenazi and 8.6% to 30% of Sephardi Y-chromosomes, appears to be one of the major founding lineages of the Jewish population. refref

Paganism (such as that seen in Turkey: 12,000 years ago)

Haplogroup G2a (Y-chromosomal DNA) and the Seeming Development of Early Agriculture – “Haplogroup G descends from macro-haplogroup F, which is thought to represent the second major migration of Homo sapiens out of Africa, at least 60,000 years ago. Haplogroup G has 303 mutations confirming a severe bottleneck before splitting into haplogroups G1 and G2. G1might have originated around modern Iran around 26,000 years ago. G2 would have developed around the same time in West Asia and haplogroup G2 appear to have been closely linked to the development of early agriculture in the Fertile Crescent part, around 11,500 years before present. G2a branch expanded to Anatolia, the Caucasus, and Europe, while G2b diffused from Iran across the Fertile Crescent and east to Pakistan.

There has so far been ancient Y-DNA analysis from Early Neolithic Anatolia, Iran, Israel, Jordan as well as most Neolithic cultures in Europe (Thessalian Neolithic in Greece, Starčevo culture in Hungary/Croatia, LBK culture in Germany, Remedello in Italy, and Cardium Pottery in south-west France and Spain) and all sites yielded a majority of G2a individuals, except those from the Levant. This strongly suggests that farming was disseminated by members of haplogroup G at least from Anatolia/Iran then moved to Europe. 44 ancient Near Eastern samples, including Neolithic farmers from Jordan and western Iran, and found one G2b sample dating from the Pre-Pottery Neolithic (9,250 years ago) and a G2a1 from the Early Pottery Neolithic (7,700 years ago), both from Iran. The highest genetic diversity within haplogroup G is found in the northern part of the Fertile Crescent, between the Levant and the Caucasus, which is a good indicator of its region of origin.

Çatalhöyük in south-central Anatolia/Turkey was founded by farmers who also brought domesticated goats and sheep. Also around 8,500 years ago, G2a Neolithic farmers arrived in northwest Anatolia and Thessaly in central Greece, as attested by the ancient genomes around the time that it seems cattle domestication was introduced to Çatalhöyük and other sites in Central Anatolia, presumably by trading with their eastern neighbors. Ancient skeletons from the Starčevo–Kőrös–Criș culture (8,000-6,500 years ago) in Hungary and Croatia, and the Linear Pottery culture (7,500-6,500 years ago) in Hungary and Germany, all confirmed that G2a (both G2a2a and G2a2b) remained the principal paternal lineage even after farmers intermingled with indigenous populations as they advanced. G2a farmers from the Thessalian Neolithic quickly expanded across the Balkans and the Danubian basin, reaching Serbia, Hungary, and Romania by 7,800 years ago, Germany by 7,500 years ago, and Belgium and northern France by 7,200 years ago. By 7,800 years ago, farmers making cardial pottery arrived at the Marmara coast in northwest Anatolia with ovicaprids and pigs.

These people crossed the Aegean by boat and colonized the Italian peninsula, the Illyrian coast, southern France and Iberia, where they established the Cardium Pottery culture (5000-1500 BCE). Once again, ancient DNA yielded a majority of G2a samples in the Cardium Pottery culture, with G2a frequencies above 80% (against 50% in Central and Southeast Europe). Nevertheless, substantial minorities of other haplogroups have been found on different Neolithic sites next to a G2a majority, including C1a2, H2, I*, I2a1, I2c, and J2a in Anatolia, C1a2, E-M78, H2, I*, I1, I2a, I2a1, J2 and T1a in Southeast and Central Europe (Starčevo, Sopot, LBK), as well as E-V13, H2, I2a1, I2a2a1 and R1b-V88 in western Europe (Cardium Pottery, Megalithic). H2 and T1a were found in the Pre-Pottery Neolithic Levant and are undeniably linked to the early development of agriculture alongside G2a. That being said, C1a2 was also found in Mesolithic Spain and, as it is an extremely old lineage associated with the first Paleolithic Europeans, it could have been found all over Europe and Anatolia before the Neolithic. E1b1b was also found in the Pre-Pottery Neolithic Levant, but the subclades may not be E-M78 or E-V13 (more likely E1b1b1* or E-M123).

R1b-V88 surely spread from the Near East too, although through a different route, with cattle herders via North Africa, then crossing over to Iberia. The rest probably represent assimilated hunter-gatherers descended from Mesolithic western Anatolian (I*, I2c, J2) and Europeans (E-V13, I*, I1, I2a, I2a1, I2a2). It is interesting to note that many of these lineages, such as C1a2, H2 and I* are virtually extinct anywhere nowadays, and several others are now very rare in Europe (I2c, R1b-V88).” ref

Haplogroup J (mtDNA) and the Seeming Spread of Early Agriculture – “Samples have been identified from various Neolithic sites, including Linear Pottery culture (LBK) in Central Europe, the Cardium Pottery culture in southern France, Megalithic cultures in northern Spain, and the Funnelbeaker culture in Germany and Sweden. All Neolithic samples tested to date belonged to J1*, J1c or J2b1a. One question that follows is: did J1c and J2b1a lineages actually come from the Near East during the Neolithic, or whether they were already in the Balkans and just expanded from there? Both being rare in the Near East today, the second hypothesis might seem more convincing at first. However, the age of J2b1a has been estimated at 11,000 years before present, while the Neolithic started over 12,000 years ago in the Near East. In other words, it could have arrived from the Near East as J2b1* and developed into J2b1a only after reaching Europe, which would explain why this particular subclade is almost exclusively European while all other subclades of J2b1 are mostly Middle Eastern or the eastern Mediterranean. J2b1a would, therefore, have come as a maternal lineage of early agriculturalists alongside the paternal lineage G2a (and perhaps also E1b1b and T1a). J1c, however, is too old (15,000 years) for that scenario.

If it had been part of the Neolithic expansion from the Fertile Crescent, many J1c subclades would be primarily West Asian today, which isn’t the case. The only J1c individuals outside Europe belong to deep clades that clearly originated in Europe or in Anatolia. DNA of Early Neolithic farmers from western Anatolia and from the Starcevo culture in Hungary and Croatia, and found that J1c was present in both cultures, alongside other typical European Neolithic lineages like H5, K1a, N1a, T2, and X2. Of 44 ancient Near Eastern samples, including Neolithic farmers from Jordan and western Iran, and well as Chalcolithic and Bronze Age samples from Armenia and the Levant, but did not find any J1c, apart from a single sample in Neolithic Iran.

This suggests that J1c lineages were probably not found among the very first farmers of the Fertile Crescent but were rather assimilated in neighboring populations further north, notably in Anatolia and Iran, but probably also in the Balkans, which were connected to Anatolia by a land bridge during the glacial and immediate post-glacial periods. Haplogroup J has been found in Bronze Age samples from the Yamna culture (J2b), Corded Ware culture (J1c and J2b1a), the Catacomb culture (J1b1a1), the Unetice culture (J1b1a1), and the Urnfield culture (J1b1), all in Central Europe. The Corded Ware culture is associated with the expansion of Y-haplogroup R1a from the northern Russian steppe, and in light of the continuity with Neolithic samples from Central Europe it can be assumed that J1c and J2b1a maternal lineages were not brought by the newcomers, but absorbed by the male invaders. On the other hand, J1b has never been found in Europe before the Bronze Age and was very probably brought by the Indo-Europeans carrying R1b paternal lineages. Both the Unetice and the Urnfield cultures are thought to have been founded mainly by R1b men.” ref

The existence of postglacial hunter-gatherers and the transition to the first farming communities took place between ca. 11,600 to 7,000 years ago, and the Neolithic began around 7,600 years ago, contemporaneously in the whole W Mediterranean – including areas up to S France. There is no chronological gradient between Valencia and Morocco as implied by some Neolithization models which postulate a gradual dispersion of the Neolithic subsistence from E to SW. Thus, a very fast expansion can be concluded, but it is not possible to deduce a direction of the Neolithization on the basis of radiocarbon ages. The chronology of the Early Neolithic persists in SE Spain until approximately 7,900-6,850 years ago in the Valencian Mediterranean and the NE Moroccan regions which illustrate a continuous transition from Epipaleolithic to Early Neolithic without a gap and fairly overlapping through occupation may not always be continuous, as hiatuses are possible. ref

Goddess relating to the three realms: heaven, earth, and the underworld.

I surmise that there is an expression in goddess representation that relates to the three realms: sky, earth and underworld; and the three stages of the moon, the moon’s waxing crescent, full moon, and moon’s waning crescent; THREE YET ONE.”

Such as a sky goddess with the upturned arms relating to the waxing crescent, the fat sitting goddess is a representation to the full moon and the arms turned down is a representation of the waning crescent. And it this way both up and down arms represent metaphorical bullhorns and why goddesses are associated with bulls or as bulls. Especially, with paganism.

Could it be the Christian triple but single god is a masculized version of the triple but single goddess theme relating two the three relatively extreme stages of the moon, starting as creator once mother turned to father (moon’s waxing crescent), the full moon fat mother goddess as if one about to give birth changed to the child Jesus, forever also connected to his virgin mother who as well is seen herself as a “semi-divine person to many” (full moon) and the goddess relating to death/afterlife turned into a forever sacred non-human great spirit the “Holy Spirit,” (moon’s waning crescent) three in one?


Paganism (such as that seen in Turkey: 12,000 years ago)

Haplogroup G2a (Y-chromosomal DNA) and the Seeming Development of Early Agriculture – “Haplogroup G descends from macro-haplogroup F, which is thought to represent the second major migration of Homo sapiens out of Africa, at least 60,000 years ago. Haplogroup G has 303 mutations confirming a severe bottleneck before splitting into haplogroups G1 and G2. G1might have originated around modern Iran around 26,000 years ago. G2 would have developed around the same time in West Asia and haplogroup G2 appear to have been closely linked to the development of early agriculture in the Fertile Crescent part, around 11,500 years before present. G2a branch expanded to Anatolia, the Caucasus, and Europe, while G2b diffused from Iran across the Fertile Crescent and east to Pakistan.

There has so far been ancient Y-DNA analysis from Early Neolithic Anatolia, Iran, Israel, Jordan as well as most Neolithic cultures in Europe (Thessalian Neolithic in Greece, Starčevo culture in Hungary/Croatia, LBK culture in Germany, Remedello in Italy, and Cardium Pottery in south-west France and Spain) and all sites yielded a majority of G2a individuals, except those from the Levant. This strongly suggests that farming was disseminated by members of haplogroup G at least from Anatolia/Iran then moved to Europe. 44 ancient Near Eastern samples, including Neolithic farmers from Jordan and western Iran, and found one G2b sample dating from the Pre-Pottery Neolithic (9,250 years ago) and a G2a1 from the Early Pottery Neolithic (7,700 years ago), both from Iran. The highest genetic diversity within haplogroup G is found in the northern part of the Fertile Crescent, between the Levant and the Caucasus, which is a good indicator of its region of origin.

Çatalhöyük in south-central Anatolia/Turkey was founded by farmers who also brought domesticated goats and sheep. Also around 8,500 years ago, G2a Neolithic farmers arrived in northwest Anatolia and Thessaly in central Greece, as attested by the ancient genomes around the time that it seems cattle domestication was introduced to Çatalhöyük and other sites in Central Anatolia, presumably by trading with their eastern neighbors. Ancient skeletons from the Starčevo–Kőrös–Criș culture (8,000-6,500 years ago) in Hungary and Croatia, and the Linear Pottery culture (7,500-6,500 years ago) in Hungary and Germany, all confirmed that G2a (both G2a2a and G2a2b) remained the principal paternal lineage even after farmers intermingled with indigenous populations as they advanced. G2a farmers from the Thessalian Neolithic quickly expanded across the Balkans and the Danubian basin, reaching Serbia, Hungary, and Romania by 7,800 years ago, Germany by 7,500 years ago, and Belgium and northern France by 7,200 years ago. By 7,800 years ago, farmers making cardial pottery arrived at the Marmara coast in northwest Anatolia with ovicaprids and pigs.

These people crossed the Aegean by boat and colonized the Italian peninsula, the Illyrian coast, southern France and Iberia, where they established the Cardium Pottery culture (5000-1500 BCE). Once again, ancient DNA yielded a majority of G2a samples in the Cardium Pottery culture, with G2a frequencies above 80% (against 50% in Central and Southeast Europe). Nevertheless, substantial minorities of other haplogroups have been found on different Neolithic sites next to a G2a majority, including C1a2, H2, I*, I2a1, I2c, and J2a in Anatolia, C1a2, E-M78, H2, I*, I1, I2a, I2a1, J2 and T1a in Southeast and Central Europe (Starčevo, Sopot, LBK), as well as E-V13, H2, I2a1, I2a2a1 and R1b-V88 in western Europe (Cardium Pottery, Megalithic). H2 and T1a were found in the Pre-Pottery Neolithic Levant and are undeniably linked to the early development of agriculture alongside G2a. That being said, C1a2 was also found in Mesolithic Spain and, as it is an extremely old lineage associated with the first Paleolithic Europeans, it could have been found all over Europe and Anatolia before the Neolithic. E1b1b was also found in the Pre-Pottery Neolithic Levant, but the subclades may not be E-M78 or E-V13 (more likely E1b1b1* or E-M123).

R1b-V88 surely spread from the Near East too, although through a different route, with cattle herders via North Africa, then crossing over to Iberia. The rest probably represent assimilated hunter-gatherers descended from Mesolithic western Anatolian (I*, I2c, J2) and Europeans (E-V13, I*, I1, I2a, I2a1, I2a2). It is interesting to note that many of these lineages, such as C1a2, H2 and I* are virtually extinct anywhere nowadays, and several others are now very rare in Europe (I2c, R1b-V88).” ref

Haplogroup J (mtDNA) and the Seeming Spread of Early Agriculture – “Samples have been identified from various Neolithic sites, including Linear Pottery culture (LBK) in Central Europe, the Cardium Pottery culture in southern France, Megalithic cultures in northern Spain, and the Funnelbeaker culture in Germany and Sweden. All Neolithic samples tested to date belonged to J1*, J1c or J2b1a. One question that follows is: did J1c and J2b1a lineages actually come from the Near East during the Neolithic, or whether they were already in the Balkans and just expanded from there? Both being rare in the Near East today, the second hypothesis might seem more convincing at first. However, the age of J2b1a has been estimated at 11,000 years before present, while the Neolithic started over 12,000 years ago in the Near East. In other words, it could have arrived from the Near East as J2b1* and developed into J2b1a only after reaching Europe, which would explain why this particular subclade is almost exclusively European while all other subclades of J2b1 are mostly Middle Eastern or the eastern Mediterranean. J2b1a would, therefore, have come as a maternal lineage of early agriculturalists alongside the paternal lineage G2a (and perhaps also E1b1b and T1a). J1c, however, is too old (15,000 years) for that scenario.

If it had been part of the Neolithic expansion from the Fertile Crescent, many J1c subclades would be primarily West Asian today, which isn’t the case. The only J1c individuals outside Europe belong to deep clades that clearly originated in Europe or in Anatolia. DNA of Early Neolithic farmers from western Anatolia and from the Starcevo culture in Hungary and Croatia, and found that J1c was present in both cultures, alongside other typical European Neolithic lineages like H5, K1a, N1a, T2, and X2. Of 44 ancient Near Eastern samples, including Neolithic farmers from Jordan and western Iran, and well as Chalcolithic and Bronze Age samples from Armenia and the Levant, but did not find any J1c, apart from a single sample in Neolithic Iran.

This suggests that J1c lineages were probably not found among the very first farmers of the Fertile Crescent but were rather assimilated in neighboring populations further north, notably in Anatolia and Iran, but probably also in the Balkans, which were connected to Anatolia by a land bridge during the glacial and immediate post-glacial periods. Haplogroup J has been found in Bronze Age samples from the Yamna culture (J2b), Corded Ware culture (J1c and J2b1a), the Catacomb culture (J1b1a1), the Unetice culture (J1b1a1), and the Urnfield culture (J1b1), all in Central Europe. The Corded Ware culture is associated with the expansion of Y-haplogroup R1a from the northern Russian steppe, and in light of the continuity with Neolithic samples from Central Europe it can be assumed that J1c and J2b1a maternal lineages were not brought by the newcomers, but absorbed by the male invaders. On the other hand, J1b has never been found in Europe before the Bronze Age and was very probably brought by the Indo-Europeans carrying R1b paternal lineages. Both the Unetice and the Urnfield cultures are thought to have been founded mainly by R1b men.” ref

Damien Marie AtHope’s Art

refref

Chauvet cave

“The Chauvet-Pont-d’Arc Cave in the Ardèche department of southeastern France is a cave that contains some of the best-preserved figurative cave paintings in the world, as well as other evidence of Upper Paleolithic life. It is located near the commune of Vallon-Pont-d’Arc on a limestone cliff above the former bed of the river Ardèche, in the Gorges de l’Ardèche. The dates have been a matter of dispute but a study published in 2012 supports placing the art in the Aurignacian period, approximately 32,000–30,000 years ago. A study published in 2016 using additional 88 radiocarbon dates showed two periods of habitation, one from 37,000 to 33,500 years ago and the second from 31,000 to 28,000 years ago, with most of the black drawings dating to the earlier period.” ref

“Hundreds of animal paintings have been cataloged, depicting at least 13 different species, including some rarely or never found in other ice age paintings. Rather than depicting only the familiar herbivores that predominate in Paleolithic cave art, i.e. horses, aurochs, mammoths, etc., the walls of the Chauvet Cave feature many predatory animals, e.g., cave lions, leopards, bears, and cave hyenas. There are also paintings of rhinoceroses. Typical of most cave art, there are no paintings of complete human figures, although there is one partial “Venus” figure composed of what appears to be a vulva attached to an incomplete pair of legs. Above the Venus, and in contact with it, is a bison head, which has led some to describe the composite drawing as a Minotaur. There are a few panels of red ochre hand prints and hand stencils made by blowing pigment over hands pressed against the cave surface. Abstract markings—lines and dots—are found throughout the cave. There are also two unidentifiable images that have a vaguely butterfly or avian shape to them. This combination of subjects has led some students of prehistoric art and cultures to believe that there was a ritualshamanic, or magical aspect to these paintings.” ref

“One drawing, later overlaid with a sketch of a deer, is reminiscent of a volcano spewing lava, similar to the regional volcanoes that were active at the time. If confirmed, this would represent the earliest known drawing of a volcanic eruption. The artists who produced these paintings used techniques rarely found in other cave art. Many of the paintings appear to have been made only after the walls were scraped clear of debris and concretions, leaving a smoother and noticeably lighter area upon which the artists worked. Similarly, a three-dimensional quality and the suggestion of movement are achieved by incising or etching around the outlines of certain figures. The art is also exceptional for its time for including “scenes”, e.g., animals interacting with each other; a pair of woolly rhinoceroses, for example, are seen butting horns in an apparent contest for territory or mating rights.” ref

Aurignacian burials (around 37,000-30,000 years ago) belong to the early phase of this period in Europe. Examples have been excavated at Cave of Cavillon, Liguria – a burial wearing a cap of netted whelk shells with a border of deer’s teeth, red ochre around the face, and a bone awl at the side. ref

Aurignacian in the Zagros region dates back to about 35,500 years ago at Yafteh Cave, Lorestan, Iran. ref 

Damien Marie AtHope’s Art

refrefrefref

34,000 years ago Lunar Calendar Cave art around the Time Shift From Totemism to Early Shamanism?

“The Oldest Lunar Calendars and Earliest Constellations have been identified in cave art found in France and Germany. The astronomer-priests of these late Upper Paleolithic Cultures understood mathematical sets, and the interplay between the moon annual cycle, ecliptic, solstice and seasonal changes on earth. The archaeological record’s earliest data that speaks to human awareness of the stars and ‘heavens’ dates to the Aurignacian Culture of Europe, around 34,000 years ago. Between 1964 and the early 1990s, Alexander Marshack published breakthrough research that documented the mathematical and astronomical knowledge in the Late Upper Paleolithic Cultures of Europe. Marshack deciphered sets of marks carved into animal bones, and occasionally on the walls of caves, as records of the lunar cycle. These marks are sets of crescents or lines. Artisans carefully controlled line thickness so that a correlation with lunar phases would be as easy as possible to perceive. Sets of marks were often laid out in a serpentine pattern that suggests a snake deity or streams and rivers. Many of these lunar calendars were made on small pieces of stone, bone or antler so that they could be easily carried. These small, portable, lightweight lunar calendars were easily carried on extended journeys such as long hunting trips and seasonal migrations.” ref

“Hunting the largest animals was arduous, and might require hunters to follow herds of horses, bison, mammoth or ibex for many weeks. (Other big animals such as the auroch, cave bear and cave lion were well known but rarely hunted for food because they had a special status in the mythic realm. The Auroch is very important to the search for earliest constellations.) The phases of the moon depicted in these sets of marks are inexact. Precision was impossible unless all nights were perfectly clear which is an unrealistic expectation. The arithmetic counting skill implied by these small lunar calendars is obvious. The recognition that there are phases of the moon and seasons of the year that can be counted – that should be counted because they are important – is profound. “All animal activities are time factored, simply because time passes, the future is forever arriving. The reality of time factoring is objective physics and does not depend upon human awareness or consciousness. Until Marshack’s work, many archeologists believed the sets of marks he chose to study were nothing but the aimless doodles of bored toolmakers. What Marshack uncovered is the intuitive discovery of mathematical sets and the application of those sets to the construction of a calendar.” Bone is the preferred medium because it allows for easy transport and a long calendar lifetime. Mankind’s earliest astronomy brought the clan into the multi-dimensional universe of the gods. Objects used in the most potent rituals had the highest contextual, cultural value and were treated with great reverence.” ref

“Regarding the Aurignacian, between 43,000 and 35,000 years ago, the archaeological record from habitations is relatively poor in the Ardèche (Abri des Pécheurs, Grotte du Figuier) while appearing more abundant in the Languedoc (La Salpétrière, La Balauzière, Esquicho-Grapaou, La Laouza etc.). The same applies to the sites of the early phases of the Gravettian. During climatic fluctuations, and unlike the deep caves such as Chauvet, the porch and shelter fills seem to have better recorded the cold episodes than the humid phases. To date, 20 decorated caves are indexed in the gorges of the Ardèche and nearby; in other words as far as the valley of the Gardon (Baume-Latrone). This group includes several important caves (Ebbou, Oulen, Émilie etc.) which are not precisely dated and were judged to be of secondary importance until the discovery of the Chauvet Cave.” ref

“A 10,000-year-old engraved stone could be a lunar calendar. The rare pebble — found high up in the mountains near Rome, Italy, the hammer-stone was found on top of Monte Alta in the Alban Hills.  It’s believed that our early ancestors would’ve used the stone to keep track of the moon’s cycles. Notches were engraved “as if they were being used to count, calculate or store the record of some kind of information. And these notches — which total either 27 or 28 — suggest the stone’s engraver used the pebble to track lunar cycles.” ref

“Archaeologists excavating in Scotland found a series of huge pits were dug by Mesolithic people to track the cycle of the Moon. They found a series of twelve huge, specially shaped pits designed to mimic the various phases of the Moon. The holes aligned perfectly on the midwinter solstice to help the hunter-gathers of Mesolithic Britain keep precise track of the passage of the seasons and the lunar cycle. The holes were dug in the shapes of various phases of the moon. “Waxing, waning, crescents, and gibbous, they’re all there and arranged in a 50-meter-long (164-foot) arc. The one representing the full moon is large and circular, approximately two meters (roughly seven feet) across, and placed right in the center. And this arc is arranged perfectly with a notch in the landscape where the sun would have risen on the day of the midwinter solstice about 10,000 years ago. Placing their calendar in the landscape the way they did would have let the people who built it to recalibrate the lunar months every winter to bring their lunar calendar in line with the solar year. This means that any effort to keep track of the seasons using the moon alone will slowly drift ever further from true. An observer needs to know when to add or subtract an extra month to make good the time or hit the reset button and start counting again.” ref

“A moon-shaped calendar was found in Smederevska Palanka, Serbia that dates back 8,000 years, and is made from a wild boar’s tusk engraved with markings to denote a lunar cycle. Farmers may have used the device to plan when to plant crops. It is made from the tusk of a wild boar and is marked with engravings thought to denote a lunar cycle of 28 days, as well as the four phases of the moon.” ref

“A lunisolar calendar was found at Warren Field in Scotland and has been dated to c. 8000 BCE, during the Mesolithic period. Some scholars argue for lunar calendars still earlier—Rappenglück in the marks on a c. 17,000-year-old cave painting at Lascaux and Marshack in the marks on a c. 27,000-year-old bone baton—but their findings remain controversial. Scholars have argued that ancient hunters conducted regular astronomical observations of the Moon back in the Upper Palaeolithic. Samuel L. Macey dates the earliest uses of the Moon as a time-measuring device back to 28,000–30,000 years ago.” ref

“A lunar calendar is a calendar based on the monthly cycles of the Moon‘s phases (synodic monthslunations), in contrast to solar calendars, whose annual cycles are based only directly on the solar year. The most commonly used calendar, the Gregorian calendar, is a solar calendar system that originally evolved out of a lunar calendar system. A purely lunar calendar is also distinguished from a lunisolar calendar, whose lunar months are brought into alignment with the solar year through some process of intercalation. The details of when months begin varies from calendar to calendar, with some using newfull, or crescent moons and others employing detailed calculations.” ref

“Since each lunation is approximately 29+12 days, it is common for the months of a lunar calendar to alternate between 29 and 30 days. Since the period of 12 such lunations, a lunar year, is 354 days, 8 hours, 48 minutes, 34 seconds (354.36707 days), purely lunar calendars are 11 to 12 days shorter than the solar year. In purely lunar calendars, which do not make use of intercalation, like the Islamic calendar, the lunar months cycle through all the seasons of a solar year over the course of a 33–34 lunar-year cycle.” ref

“Although the Gregorian calendar is in common and legal use in most countries, traditional lunar and lunisolar calendars continue to be used throughout the world to determine religious festivals and national holidays. Such holidays include Rosh Hashanah (Hebrew calendar); Easter (the Computus); the ChineseKoreanVietnamese, and Mongolian New Year (ChineseKoreanVietnamese, and Mongolian calendars, respectively); the Nepali New Year (Nepali calendar); the Mid-Autumn Festival and Chuseok (Chinese and Korean calendars); Loi Krathong (Thai calendar); Sunuwar calendar; Vesak/Buddha’s Birthday (Buddhist calendar); Diwali (Hindu calendars); RamadanEid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha (Islamic calendar).” ref

“The Japanese Calendar formerly used both the lunar and lunisolar calendar before it was replaced by the Gregorian Calendar during the Meiji government in 1872. Holidays such as the Japanese New Year were simply transposed on top as opposed to being calculated like other countries that use the lunisolar and Gregorian calendars together, for example, the Japanese New Year now falls on January 1, creating a month delay as opposed to other East Asian Countries. See customary issues in modern Japan.” ref

“Most calendars referred to as “lunar” calendars are in fact lunisolar calendars. Their months are based on observations of the lunar cycle, with intercalation being used to bring them into general agreement with the solar year. The solar “civic calendar” that was used in ancient Egypt showed traces of its origin in the earlier lunar calendar, which continued to be used alongside it for religious and agricultural purposes. Present-day lunisolar calendars include the ChineseVietnameseHindu, and Thai calendars.” ref

“Synodic months are 29 or 30 days in length, making a lunar year of 12 months about 11 to 12 days shorter than a solar year. Some lunar calendars do not use intercalation, for example, the lunar Hijri calendar used by most Muslims. For those that do, such as the Hebrew calendar, and Buddhist Calendars in Myanmar, the most common form of intercalation is to add an additional month every second or third year. Some lunisolar calendars are also calibrated by annual natural events which are affected by lunar cycles as well as the solar cycle. An example of this is the lunar calendar of the Banks Islands, which includes three months in which the edible palolo worms mass on the beaches. These events occur at the last quarter of the lunar month, as the reproductive cycle of the palolos is synchronized with the moon.” ref

“Lunar and lunisolar calendars differ as to which day is the first day of the month. In some lunisolar calendars, such as the Chinese calendar, the first day of a month is the day when an astronomical new moon occurs in a particular time zone. In others, such as some Hindu calendars, each month begins on the day after the full moon. Others are based on the first sighting of the lunar crescent, such as the lunar Hijri calendar (and, historically, the Hebrew calendar).” ref

List of Lunar Deities

In mythology, a lunar deity is a god or goddess of the Moon, sometimes as a personification. These deities can have a variety of functions and traditions depending upon the culture, but they are often related. Some forms of moon worship can be found in most ancient religions. The Moon features prominently in art and literature, often with a purported influence in human affairs. Many cultures are oriented chronologically by the Moon, as opposed to the Sun. The Hindu calendar maintains the integrity of the lunar month and the moon god Chandra has religious significance during many Hindu festivals (e.g. Karwa ChauthSankashti Chaturthi, and during eclipses). The ancient Germanic tribes were also known to have a lunar calendar.” ref

“Many cultures have implicitly linked the 29.5-day lunar cycle to women’s menstrual cycles, as evident in the shared linguistic roots of “menstruation” and “moon” words in multiple language families. This identification was not universal, as demonstrated by the fact that not all moon deities are female. Still, many well-known mythologies feature moon goddesses, including the Greek goddess Selene, the Roman goddess Luna, and the Chinese goddess Chang’e. Several goddesses including Artemis, Hecate, and Isis did not originally have lunar aspects, and only acquired them late in antiquity due to syncretism with the de facto Greco-Roman lunar deity Selene/Luna. In traditions with male gods, there is little evidence of such syncretism, though the Greek Hermes has been equated with the male Egyptian lunar god Thoth.ref

“Male lunar gods are also common, such as Sin of the Mesopotamians, Mani of the Germanic tribes, Tsukuyomi of the Japanese, Igaluk/Alignak of the Inuit, and the Hindu god Chandra. The original Proto-Indo-European lunar deity appears to have been male, with many possible derivatives including the Homeric figure of Menelaus. Cultures with male moon gods often feature sun goddesses. An exception is Hinduism, featuring both male and female aspects of the solar divine. The ancient Egyptians had several moon gods including Khonsu and Thoth, although Thoth is a considerably more complex deity. Set represented the moon in the Egyptian Calendar of Lucky and Unlucky Days.ref

African Moon Deities

Abuk is the first woman in the myths of the Dinka people of South Sudan and the Nuer of South Sudan and Ethiopia, who call her Buk or AcolShe is the only well-known female deity of the Dinka. She is also the patron goddess of women as well as gardens. Her emblem or symbols are, a small snake, the moon, and sheep. She is the mother of the god of rain and fertility (Denka).” ref 

Amesemi Kushite Protective goddess and wife of Apedemak, the lion-god. She was represented with a crown-shaped as a falcon, or with a crescent moon on her head on top of which a falcon was standing.” ref

“Ayyur Berberref

Gleti Dahomean is a moon goddess of the Fon people from the Kingdom of Dahomey, situated in what is now BeninIn Dahomey mythology, she is the mother of all the stars. An eclipse is caused by the shadow of the moon’s husband crossing her face.” ref, ref

Mawu Dahomean (alternately: Mawu-Lisa or Mahu) is a creator goddess, associated with the Sun and Moon in Dahomey mythology. In some myths, she is the wife of the male god Lisa. Mahu and Lisa are the children of Nana Buluku, and are the parents of Xevioso. After creating the Earth and all life and everything else on it, she became concerned that it might be too heavy, so she asked the primeval serpent, Aido Hwedo, to curl up beneath the earth and thrust it up in the sky.” ref, ref 

Iah Egyptian is a lunar deity in ancient Egyptian religion. The word jꜥḥ simply means “Moon”. It is also transcribed as YahJah, or Aah. By the New Kingdom (16th century to 11th century BCE) he was less prominent than other gods with lunar connections, Thoth and Khonsu. As a result of the functional connection between them he could be identified with either of those deities. Iah was also assimilated with Osiris, god of the dead, perhaps because, in its monthly cycle, the Moon appears to renew itself. Iah was sometimes considered an adult form of Khonsu and was increasingly absorbed by him. He continued to appear in amulets and occasional other representations, similar to Khonsu in appearance, with the same lunar symbols on his head and occasionally the same tight garments. He differed in usually wearing a full wig instead of a child’s sidelock, and sometimes the Atef topped by another symbol. As time went on, Iah also became Iah-Djehuty, meaning “god of the new moon”. In this role, he assumed the lunar aspect of Thoth (also known as Djehuty), who was the god of knowledge, writing, and calculation. The segments of the moon were also used as fractional symbols in writing.” ref, ref

(Iah (Egyptian) is a lunar deity in ancient Egyptian religion. The word jꜥḥ simply means “Moon”. It is also transcribed as Yah, Jah, or Aah. ref  So, Yahweh/YHWH ancient Israel God is Iah/Yah/Jah/Aah/Osiris Egyptian god and a moon god.ref

Yahweh was the national god of ancient Israel and Judah. The origins of his worship reach at least to the early Iron Age, and likely to the Late Bronze Age if not somewhat earlier. In the oldest biblical literature, he possesses attributes typically ascribed to weather and war deities, fructifying the land and leading the heavenly army against Israel’s enemies. Most scholars are of the view that at that time the Israelites were polytheistic and worshipped him alongside a variety of Canaanite gods and goddesses, including ElAsherah, and Baal. In later centuries, El and Yahweh became conflated and El-linked epithets such as El Shaddai came to be applied to Yahweh alone, and other gods and goddesses such as Baal and Asherah were absorbed into Yahwist religion. According to other scholars, however, the exclusive worship of Yahweh was widespread before the Babylonian exile, and such Israelite monolatry may have even existed before the rise of the United Monarchy. In Iron Age I, Yahweh’s cult center appears to have been Shiloh; by Iron Age II, it had been supplanted by Jerusalem, where the deity was enshrined in a Temple containing the Ark of the Covenant.” ref

iNyanga Zulu Goddess of the Moon.” ref

Khonsu Egyptian is god of the moon. A story tells that Ra (the sun God) had forbidden Nut (the Sky goddess) to give birth on any of the 360 days of the calendar. In order to help her give birth to her children, Thoth (the god of wisdom) played against Khonsu in a game of senet. Khonsu lost to Thoth and then he gave away enough moonlight to create 5 additional days so Nut could give birth to her five children. It was said that before losing, the moonlight was on par with the sunlight. Sometimes, Khonsu is depicted as a hawk-headed god, however, he is mostly depicted as a young man with a side-lock of hair, like a young Egyptian. He was also a god of time. The center of his cult was at Thebes which was where he took place in a triad with Amun and Mut. Khonsu was also heavily associated with Thoth who also took part in the measurement of time and the moon.ref 
Thoth Egyptian was the god of the moon, wisdom, writing, hieroglyphs, science, magic, art, and judgment. His Greek equivalent is Hermes. In art, he was often depicted as a man with the head of an ibis a wading bird, or a baboon, animals sacred to him.ref 

Ela-Opitan Yoruba religion.ref 

Europe Moon Deities

Arianrhod Welsh is a figure in Welsh mythology who plays her most important role in the Fourth Branch of the Mabinogi. She is the daughter of Dôn and the sister of Gwydion and Gilfaethwy; the Welsh Triads give her father as Beli Mawr. In the Mabinogi her uncle Math ap Mathonwy is the King of Gwynedd, and during the course of the story she gives birth to two sons, Dylan ail Don and Lleu Llaw Gyffes, through magical means. The name “Arianrhod” (from the Welsh arian, “silver,” and rhod, “wheel”) may be cognate with Proto-Celtic *Arganto-rotā, meaning “silver wheel.” ref, ref

Artemis Greek is the goddess of the huntwildernesswild animalschastity, and now the Moon. There are no records of the Greeks referring to her as a Moon Goddess as their Moon Goddess was Selene. But her Roman analog Diana was a moon goddess so as time went on they merely considered Artemis a moon goddess for the sake of convenience, even if not historically accurate. She is the daughter of Zeus and Leto and the twin sister of Apollo. She would eventually be extensively syncretized with the Roman goddess DianaCynthia was originally an epithet of the Greek goddess Artemis, who according to legend was born on Mount Cynthus. Selene, the Greek personification of the Moon, and the Roman Diana were also sometimes called “Cynthia.” ref

Artume (also called AritimiArtames, or Artumes) was an Etruscan goddess who was the mistress of animals, goddess of human assemblies, and hunting deity of Neolithic origin. Etruscans later appropriated the Greek goddess Artemis. Aritimi was also considered the founder of the Etruscan town Aritie which is today the Italian town Arezzo.” ref, ref

Ataegina Lusitanian was a goddess worshipped by the ancient IberiansLusitanians, and Celtiberians of the Iberian Peninsula. She was believed to rule the underworld. The name Ataegina is most commonly derived from a Celtic source: the two roots *atte- and *geno- to mean “Reborn” or from *ad-akwī- (Irish adaig) meaning “night”. But her presence in decidedly non-Indo-European Iberian regions suggest that she may have an older, indigenous origin, in which case her name’s etymology is more likely Iberian or Tartessian.” ref, ref

Bendis Thracian was a goddess associated with hunting and the moon. Goddess worship seems to have been introduced into Attica around 430 BCE. Some writers identified Bendis in Attica with the goddess Artemis, but the temple of Bendis at Piraeus which was near the temple of Artemis, clearly display that the two goddesses were distinct. She was a huntress, like Artemis, but was often accompanied by dancing satyrs and maenads, as represented on a fifth-century red-figure stemless cup at Verona. The Greeks wrote of Bendis as one of the seven daughters of Zeus who were turned into swans who would later reappear in human forms driving a golden carriage and teaching crowds.ref, ref

Diana is a goddess in Roman and Hellenistic religion, primarily considered a patroness of the countrysidehunters, crossroads, and the Moon. She is equated with the Greek goddess Artemis, and absorbed much of Artemis’ and Selenes mythology early in Roman history, including a birth on the island of Delos to parents Jupiter and Latona, and a twin brother, Apollo, though she had an independent origin in Italy.” ref

Elatha was a king of the Fomorians in Irish mythology. He succeeded his father Delbáeth and was replaced by his son Bres, mothered by Ériu.” ref

Hecate Greek associated with the Moon, Hecate is not actually considered a goddess of the moon.” ref

Hors or Khors is a Slavic god of uncertain functions mentioned since the 12th century. Generally interpreted as a sun god, sometimes as a moon god.” ref, ref

Hjúki and Bil in Norse mythologyHjúki (Old Norse[ˈhiu̯ːke], possibly meaning “the one returning to health”) and Bil (O.N.: [ˈbil], literally “instant”) are a brother and sister pair of children who follow the personified moonMáni, across the heavens.” ref, ref 

Ilargi Basque IlargiIle or Ilazki is the name of the Moon in Basque language. In Basque mythology, she is the daughter of Mother Earth, to whom it returns daily.” ref, ref

Kuu is the Finnish word for the Moon. In Finnish mythology it is a Moon goddess. According to the Kalevala, the daughter of the air Ilmatar allowed a teal to lay its egg on her knee as she floated in the abyss. The egg fell and its parts formed the universe: the white of the egg became the Moon, and the yolk the Sun.” ref, ref

Losna was the Etruscan moon goddess.” ref, ref

Luna Roman in ancient Roman religion and mythLuna is the divine embodiment of the Moon (Latin Lūna [ˈɫ̪uːnä]). She is often presented as the female complement of the Sun, Sol, conceived of as a god. Luna is also sometimes represented as an aspect of the Roman triple goddess (diva triformis), along with Proserpina and HecateLuna is not always a distinct goddess, but sometimes rather an epithet that specializes a goddess, since both Diana and Juno are identified as moon goddesses.” ref, ref

Mano Sámi in Sami mythology, Mano, Manno, Aske, or Manna is a personification of the Moon as a female deity. The Sami worldview is animistic in nature, with shamanistic features, and in that worldview their divinities occupied important positions. Every force of nature is associated with a god or goddess, and sources of livelihood are believed to be safeguarded by beings in the spiritual world that can be persuaded to be more favorable. Like other nature-deities, the goddess Mano is seen as unpredictable and dangerous. She is worshiped around the time of the new moon, especially around the Winter Solstice, and during that time it is taboo to make any kind of noise.ref, ref

Máni is the personification of the Moon in Norse mythology. Máni, personified, is attested in the Poetic Edda, compiled in the 13th century from earlier traditional sources, and the Prose Edda, written in the 13th century by Snorri Sturluson. Both sources state that he is the brother of the personified sun, Sól, and the son of Mundilfari, while the Prose Edda adds that he is followed by the children Hjúki and Bil through the heavens.” ref

Meness Latvian the male deities spy on the solar deity at the world tree, prepare a bath for her, tease her, and so on. Eventually, she is abducted and wed (it has been suggested Saule’s husband is the moon god Mēness).” ref, ref

Myesyats Slavic From comparison to Baltic mythology and from Slavic folklore accounts, one can deduce that Jarilo was associated with the Moon. His somewhat mischievous nature, which ultimately results in his betrayal of his wife, was likened to the Moon’s changing phases. He has also been compared to other death and rebirth gods associated with agricultural fertility, like Greek Adonis and Olympian god Dionysus. The Proto-Slavic root *jarъ (jar), from Proto-Indo-European *yōr-*yeh₁ro-, from *yeh₁r-, means “spring” or “summer”, “strong”, “furious”, “imbued with youthful life-force”. According to Radoslav Katičić and Vitomir Belaj, he was a fairly typical life-death-rebirth deity, believed to be (re)born and killed every year. His mythical life cycle mirrored that of the wheat crop, from its birth when sown through its flourishing youth to its sacrificial death at harvest time.” ref, ref

Phoebe in ancient Greek religion and mythologyPhoebe (/ˈfbi/ FEE-beeAncient GreekΦοίβηromanizedPhoíbē, associated with φοῖβος phoîbos, “shining”) was one of the first generation of Titans, who were one set of sons and daughters of Uranus and Gaia. She was the grandmother of the sun god Apollo, the moon goddess Artemis, and the witchcraft goddess Hecate. According to myth, she was the original owner of the Oracle of Delphi before gifting it to her grandson Apollo. Her name, meaning “bright”, was also given to a number of lunar goddesses like Artemis and later the Roman goddesses Luna and Diana, but Phoebe herself was not actively a moon goddess on her own right in ancient mythology.” ref, ref

Selene Greek was the original Titan goddess of the moon. She was depicted as a woman riding sidesaddle on a horse or driving a chariot drawn by a pair of winged steeds. However when the Romans created Diana they referred Artemis as a Moon Goddess. So as later cultures looked back they conflated Artemis as a moon goddess when the Greeks never referred to her as such. To this day Artemis is still referred to as The moon goddess instead of Selene.” ref

Triple Goddess Wicca (Neopaganism) is a deity or deity archetype revered in many Neopagan religious and spiritual traditions. In common Neopagan usage, the Triple Goddess is viewed as a triunity of three distinct aspects or figures united in one being. These three figures are often described as the Maiden, the Mother, and the Crone, each of which symbolizes both a separate stage in the female life cycle and a phase of the Moon, and often rules one of the realms of heavens, earth, and underworld. In various forms of Wicca, her masculine consort is the Horned God.” ref, ref

Asian Moon Deities 

Ainu mythology

  • God Kunnechup Kamui

Anatolian

Chinese mythology

Elamite 

Hinduism

  • God Agni, invoked as a moon deity in some hymns
  • God Chandra or Soma, The moon god

Hurro-Urartian

Indonesian mythology

Japanese mythology

Korean mythology

  • Goddess Myeongwol

Mari mythology

  • God Tõlze

Philippine mythologies

  • Kabigat (Bontok mythology): the goddess of the moon who cut of the head of Chal-chal’s son; her action is the origin of headhunting
  • Bulan (Ifugao mythology): the moon deity of the night in charge of nighttime
  • Moon Deity (Ibaloi mythology): the deity who teased Kabunian for not yet having a spouse
  • Delan (Bugkalot mythology): deity of the moon, worshiped with the sun and stars; congenial with Elag; during quarrels, Elag sometimes covers Delan’s face, causing the different phases of the moon; giver of light and growth
  • Bulan (Ilocano mythology): the moon god of peace who comforted the grieving Abra
  • Bulan (Pangasinense mythology): the merry and mischievous moon god, whose dim palace was the source of the perpetual light which became the stars; guides the ways of thieves
  • Wife of Mangetchay (Kapampangan mythology): wife of Mangetchay who gave birth to their daughter whose beauty sparked the great war; lives in the Moon
  • Mayari (Kapampangan mythology): the moon goddess who battled her brother, Apolaqui
  • Apûng Malyari (Kapampangan mythology): moon god who lives in Mount Pinatubo and ruler of the eight rivers
  • Mayari (Tagalog mythology): goddess of the moon; sometimes identified as having one eye; ruler of the world during nighttime and daughter of Bathala
  • Dalagang nasa Buwan (Tagalog mythology): the maiden of the moon
  • Dalagang Binubukot (Tagalog mythology): the cloistered maiden in the moon
  • Unnamed Moon God (Tagalog mythology): the night watchman who tattled on Rajo’s theft, leading to an eclipse
  • Bulan-hari (Tagalog mythology): one of the deities sent by Bathala to aid the people of Pinak; can command rain to fall; married to Bitu-in
  • Bulan (Bicolano mythology): son of Dagat and Paros; joined Daga’s rebellion and died; his body became the Moon; in another myth, he was alive and from his cut arm, the earth was established, and from his tears, the rivers and seas were established
  • Haliya (Bicolano mythology): the goddess of the moon, often depicted with a golden mask on her face
  • Libulan (Bisaya mythology): the copper-bodied son of Lidagat and Lihangin; killed by Kaptan’s rage during the great revolt; his body became the moon
  • Bulan (Bisaya mythology): the moon deity who gives light to sinners and guides them in the night
  • Launsina (Capiznon mythology): the goddess of the Sun, Moon, stars, and seas, and the most beloved because people seek forgiveness from her
  • Diwata na Magbabaya (Bukidnon mythology): simply referred as Magbabaya; the good supreme deity and supreme planner who looks like a man; created the Earth and the first eight elements, namely bronze, gold, coins, rock, clouds, rain, iron, and water; using the elements, he also created the sea, sky, Moon, and stars; also known as the pure god who wills all things; one of three deities living in the realm called Banting
  • Bulon La Mogoaw (T’boli mythology): one of the two supreme deities; married to Kadaw La Sambad; lives in the seventh layer of the universe
  • Moon Deity (Maranao mythology): divine being depicted in an anthropomorphic form as a beautiful young woman; angels serve as her charioteers

Vietnamese mythology

Semitic mythology

Turkic mythology

Austronesian

Australia Moon Deities 

Americas Moon Deities 

Aztec mythology

Cahuilla mythology

  • Goddess Menily

Hopi mythology

God Muuya

Incan mythology

Inuit mythology

Lakota mythology

  • Goddess Hanwi

Maya mythology

Muisca mythology

Nivaclé Mythology

  • Jive’cla

Pawnee mythology

  • God Pah

Tupi Guarani mythology

Voodoo

ref

List of Solar Deities

solar deity is a god or goddess who represents the Sun, or an aspect of it, usually by its perceived power and strength. Solar deities and Sun worship can be found throughout most of recorded history in various forms. The following is a list of solar deities. dawn god or goddess is a deity in a polytheistic religious tradition who is in some sense associated with the dawn. These deities show some relation with the morning, the beginning of the day, and, in some cases, become syncretized with similar solar deities.” ref, ref

African

Egyptian mythology

  • Amun, creator deity sometimes identified as a Sun god
  • Aten, god of the Sun, the visible disc of the Sun
  • Atum, the “finisher of the world” who represents the Sun as it sets
  • Bast, cat goddess associated with the Sun
  • Hathor, mother of Horus and Ra and goddess of the Sun
  • Horus, god of the sky whose right eye was considered to be the Sun and his left the Moon
  • Khepri, god of the rising Sun, creation and renewal of life
  • Ptah, god of craftsmanship, the arts, and fertility, sometimes said to represent the Sun at night
  • Ra, god of the Sun
  • Sekhmet, goddess of war and of the Sun, sometimes also plagues and creator of the desert
  • Sopdu, god of war and the scorching heat of the summer Sun

American

Aztec mythology

Brazilian mythology

Incan mythology

  • Inti, god of the Sun and patron deity of the Inca Empire
  • Ch’aska (“Venus”) or Ch’aska Quyllur (“Venus star”) was the goddess of dawn and twilight, the planet

Inuit mythology

Maya mythology

  • Ah Kin, god of the Sun, bringer of doubt, and protector against the evils associated with darkness
  • Hunahpu, one of the Maya Hero Twins; he transformed into the Sun while his brother transformed into the Moon
  • Kinich Ahau, god of the Sun

Muisca mythology

  • Sué, god of the Sun and husband of Chía, the Moon

Other Amerindian mythology

Asian

Ainu mythology

  • Chup Kamui, a lunar goddess who switched places with her brother to become goddess of the Sun

Arabian mythology

Armenian mythology

Buddhist mythology

  • Marici, goddess of the heavens, the Sun, and light
  • Surya, god of the Sun (Suriya Pariththa, Suthra Pitaka, Pali canon, Theravada Buddhism)

Chinese mythology

  • Doumu, Sun goddess sometimes conflated with Marici.
  • Xihe, Sun goddess and mother of the ten suns
  • Yu Yi, god that carries the Sun across the sky
  • Xu Kai, god of the Sun star

Elamite

Filipino mythology

  • Init-init: the Itneg god of the Sun married to the mortal Aponibolinayen; during the day, he leaves his house to shine light on the world
  • Chal-chal: the Bontok god of the Sun whose son’s head was cut off by Kabigat; aided the god Lumawig in finding a spouse
  • Mapatar: the Ifugao sun deity of the sky in charge of daylight
  • Sun God: the Ibaloi deity who pushed up the skyworld and pushed down the underworld, creating earth, after he was hit by a man’s arrow during the war between the peoples of the skyworld and the underworld
  • Elag: the Bugkalot deity of the Sun, worshiped with the moon and stars; has a magnificent house in the sky realm called Gacay; retreats to his home during nights; giver of light and growth
  • Apo Init: the Ilocano deity of the sun
  • Amman: the Ilocano god of the Sun, where the sun is his eye
  • Agueo: the morose and taciturn Pangasinense sun god who is obedient to his father, Ama; lives in a palace of light
  • Algao: the Aeta Sun god who battled the giant turtle Bacobaco
  • Mangetchay: also called Mangatia; the Kapampangan supreme deity who created life on earth in remembrance of his dead daughter; lives in the Sun; in other versions, she is the creator and net-weaver of the heavens
  • Aring Sinukûan: the Kapampangan Sun god of war and death, taught the early inhabitants the industry of metallurgy, wood cutting, rice culture and even waging war; lives in Mount Arayat, and later included a female form
  • Apolaki: the Tagalog god of sun and warriors; son of Anagolay and Dumakulem; sometimes referred as son of Bathala and brother of Mayari; ruler of the world during daytime
  • Quadruple Deities: the four childless naked Tau-buid Mangyan deities, composed of two gods who come from the Sun and two goddesses who come from the upper part of the river; summoned using the paragayan or diolang plates
  • Adlao: the Bicolano son of Dagat and Paros; joined Daga’s rebellion and died; his body became the sun; in another myth, he was alive and during a battle, he cut one of Bulan’s arm and hit Bulan’s eyes, where the arm was flattened and became the earth, while Bulan’s tears became the rivers and seas
  • Unnamed God: a Bicolano Sun god who fell in love with the mortal, Rosa; refused to light the world until his father consented to their marriage; he afterwards visited Rosa, but forgetting to remove his powers over fire, he accidentally burned Rosa’s whole village until nothing but hot springs remained
  • Sanghid: the Waray giant who wove cloth on a gold loom with supernatural speed; has the power to move back the Sun
  • Liadlao: the gold-bodied Bisaya son of Lidagat and Lihangin; killed by Kaptan’s rage during the great revolt; his body became the Sun
  • Adlaw: the Bisaya Sun deity worshiped by the good
  • Launsina: the Capiznon goddess of the Sun, Moon, stars, and seas, and the most beloved because people seek forgiveness from her
  • Magrakad: the Tagbanwa god found at exactly noontime on the other side of the Sun; gives the warmth which sustains life and, when the people are ill, carries away sickness
  • Tumangkuyun: wash and keep clean the trunks of the two sacred cardinal trees in Sidpan and Babatan by using the blood of those who have died in epidemics; the blood he uses causes the colors of the sunrise and sunset
  • Libtakan: the Manobo god of sunrise, sunset, and good weather
  • Unnamed Gods: the Bagobo gods whose fire create smoke that becomes the white clouds, while the Sun creates yellow clouds that make the colors of the rainbow
  • Kadaw La Sambad: one of the two T’boli supreme deities; married to Bulon La Mogoaw; lives in the seventh layer of the universe
  • Lageay Lengkuos: the greatest of Teduray heroes and a shaman (beliyan) who made the earth and forests; the only one who could pass the magnet stone in the straight between the big and little oceans; inverted the directions where east became west, inverted the path of the Sun, and made the water into land and land into water
  • Sun Deity: the divine Maranao being depicted in an anthropomorphic form as a flaming young man; angels serve as his charioteers

Gondi mythology

  • Narayan-Pen, god of the sun.

Hinduism

The manifestations of sun god in Hindu belief are: See also other Indian-origin religions, namely Buddhism and Jainism.

  • Adityas and Aditi
  • Aruna, charioteer of Surya, god of the morning Sun.
  • Aryaman, god of the midday Sun
  • Bhaskar
  • Mihir, meaning Sun.
  • Mitra, often associated with the Sun
  • Savitr, god of the sun at sunrise and sunset
  • Surya, the Sun god, rides across the sky in a horse-drawn chariot à la Helios and Sol
  • Tapati, Sun goddess.

Hittite mythology

Japanese mythology

Mesopotamian mythology

  • Shamash, Akkadian god of the Sun and justice
  • Utu, Sumerian god of the Sun and justice
  • Šerida, Sumerian goddess of light, married to the god of the Sun (Akkadian name Aya)

Meitei mythology

Scythian religion

  • Tabiti, ancient Iranian goddess possibly connected with the Sun.

Tocharian

  • A “sun deity” (kaum näkte), possibly a goddess.

Turkic mythology

  • Gun Ana, common Turkic solar deity, seen as a goddess in the Kazakh and Kyrgyz traditions
  • Koyash, god of the Sun 

Persian mythology

Zunism

  • The Zunbil dynasty and the subjects of Zabulistan worshiped the Sun, which they called Zun. They believed that the Sun was the god of justice, the force of good in the world and, consequently, the being that drove out the darkness and allowed man to live another day.

Vietnamese mythology

European

Baltic mythology

Basque mythology

  • Ekhi, goddess of the Sun and protector of humanity

Celtic mythology

  • Áine, Irish goddess of love, summer, wealth, and sovereignty, associated with the Sun and midsummer
  • Alaunus, Gaulish god of the Sun, healing, and prophecy
  • Belenos, Gaulish god of the Sun
  • Brigid, an Irish goddess sometimes described as having a solar nature
  • Étaín, Irish Sun goddess
  • Grannus, god associated with spas, healing thermal and mineral springs, and the Sun
  • Lugh, Sun god as well as a writing and warrior god
  • Macha, “Sun of the womanfolk” and occasionally considered synonymous with Grian
  • Olwen, female figure often constructed as originally the Welsh Sun goddess
  • Sulis, British goddess whose name is related to the common Proto-Indo-European word for “Sun” and thus cognate with Helios, Sól, Sol, and Surya and who retains solar imagery, as well as a domain over healing and thermal springs. Probably the de facto solar deity of the Celts.

Etruscan mythology

Finnish mythology

Germanic mythology

  • Sól/Sunna/Sunne, the common Sun goddess among the Germanic tribes, from Proto-Germanic Sōwilō; was chased across the sky in her horse-drawn chariot by a wolf

Greek mythology

  • Hyperion, titan god and personification of the Sun; father of Helios.
  • Helios, god and personification of the Sun who drove across the sky in a chariot.
  • Apollo, god of the Sun and light, among others. His most common epithet was Phoebus (“Radiant”)
  • Eos, goddess and personification of the dawn
  • Hemera, goddess of the day
  • Electryone, goddess of the sunrise
  • Zeus, sky god who has minor solar associations and functions

Hungarian mythology

  • Nap Király, the Hungarian god of sun. He’s said to ride his silver fur horse everyday from east to west.
  • Nap Anya, Goddess of the sun, partner of Nap király

Lusitanian mythology

  • Endovelicus, god of health and safety, worshiped both as a solar deity and a chthonic one
  • Neto, claimed to be both a solar and war deity
  • A possible sun goddess, whose cult has become that of Virgin Mary Nossa Senhora de Antime.

Minoan mythology

Roman mythology

  • Aurora, goddess of dawn
  • Sol, god of the Sun, rides in a horse-drawn chariot

Sami mythology

  • Beiwe, goddess of the Sun, spring, fertility, and sanity

Slavic mythology

    Oceania

    Australian Aboriginal mythology

    • Bila, cannibal sun goddess of the Adnyamathanha
    • Gnowee, solar goddess who searches daily for her lost son; the light of her torch is the Sun
    • Wala, solar goddess
    • Bazza, solar goddess whose torch is the Sun
    • Yhi, Karraur goddess of the sun, light and creation

    Māori mythology

    ref

    Damien Marie AtHope’s Art

    refrefrefrefrefrefref

    Bear worship

    Bear worship (also known as the bear cult or arctolatry) is the religious practice of the worshipping of bears found in many North Eurasian ethnic religions such as among the SamiNivkhAinuBasquesGermanic peoplesSlavs, and Finns. There are also a number of deities from Celtic Gaul and Britain associated with the bear, and the DaciansThracians, and Getians were noted to worship bears and annually celebrate the bear dance festival. The bear is featured on many totems throughout northern cultures that carve them. Bears were the most worshipped animals of Ancient Slavs. During pagan times, it was associated with the god Volos, the patron of domestic animals. Eastern Slavic folklore describes the bear as a totem personifying a male: father, husband, or a fiancé. Legends about turnskin bears appeared, it was believed that humans could be turned into bears for misbehavior.” ref

    “Bears in Korean mythology, According to legend, Ungnyeo (literally “bear woman”) was a bear who turned into a woman, and gave birth to Dangun, the founder of the first Korean kingdom, Gojoseon. Bears were revered as motherly figures and as symbolic of patience. In Finnish paganism, the bear was considered a taboo animal and the word for “bear” (oksi) was a taboo word. Euphemisms such as mesikämmen “honey-hand” were used instead. Bear hunting and killing a bear was followed by a party called peijaiset with ceremony intended to show that the bear would be a “honored guest” instead of a slaughtered animal, and that its death was “accidental”, in order to not to anger the bear’s spirit. The skull of the bear was hung onto a tree, which was venerated as a totem.” ref

    The bear festival is a religious festival celebrated by the indigenous Nivkh in Russia’s far east. A Nivkh shaman (ch’am) would preside over the Bear Festival, celebrated in the winter between January and February depending on the clan. Bears were captured and raised in a corral for several years by local women, treating the bear like a child. The bear is considered a sacred earthly manifestation of Nivkh ancestors and the gods in bear form. During the Festival, the bear is dressed in a specially made ceremonial costume and offered a banquet to take back to the realm of gods to show benevolence upon the clans. After the banquet, the bear is killed and eaten in an elaborate religious ceremony. The festival was arranged by relatives to honor the death of a kinsman. The bear’s spirit returns to the gods of the mountain ‘happy’ and rewards the Nivkh with bountiful forests. Generally, the Bear Festival was an inter-clan ceremony where a clan of wife-takers restored ties with a clan of wife-givers upon the broken link of the kinsman’s death. The Bear Festival was suppressed in the Soviet period; since then the festival has had a modest revival, albeit as a cultural rather than a religious ceremony.” ref

    The Ainu people, who live on select islands in the Japanese archipelago, call the bear “kamuy” in their language, which translates to mean “god” similar to KamiWhile many other animals are considered to be gods in the Ainu culture, the bear is the head of the gods. For the Ainu, when the gods visit the world of man, they don fur and claws and take on the physical appearance of an animal. Usually, however, when the term “kamuy” is used, it essentially means a bear. The Ainu people willingly and thankfully ate the bear as they believed that the disguise (the flesh and fur) of any god was a gift to the home that the god chose to visit. While on Earth – the world of man – the Ainu believed that the gods appeared in the form of animals. The gods had the capability of taking human form, but they only took this form in their home, the country of the gods, which is outside the world of man. To return a god back to his country, the people would sacrifice and eat the animal sending the god’s spirit away with civility. This ritual is called Omante and usually involves a deer or adult bear.” ref

    Kami (Japanese: are the deitiesdivinities, spirits, phenomena, or “holy powers”), that are venerated in the religion of Shinto. They can be elements of the landscape, forces of nature, or beings and the qualities that these beings express; they can also be the spirits of venerated dead people. Many kami are considered the ancient ancestors of entire clans (some ancestors became kami upon their death if they were able to embody the values and virtues of kami in life).” ref

    “Omante occurred when the people sacrificed an adult bear, but when they caught a bear cub they performed a different ritual which is called Iomante, in the Ainu language, or Kumamatsuri in Japanese. Kumamatsuri translates to “bear festival” and Iomante means “sending off”. The event of Kumamatsuri began with the capture of a young bear cub. As if he was a child given by the gods, the cub was fed human food from a carved wooden platter and was treated better than Ainu children for they thought of him as a god. If the cub was too young and lacked the teeth to properly chew food, a nursing mother will let him suckle from her own breast. When the cub reaches 2–3 years of age, the cub is taken to the altar and then sacrificed. Usually, Kumamatsuri occurs in midwinter when the bear meat is the best from the added fat. The villagers will shoot it with both normal and ceremonial arrows, make offerings, dance, and pour wine on top of the cub corpse. The words of sending off for the bear god are then recited. This festival lasts for three days and three nights to properly return the bear god to his home.” ref

    Bear Goddesses and Gods Across Ancient Cultures

    Gods and goddesses of the ancient world held a connection with certain animals. This is because our ancestors’ beliefs were animistic – they believed everything on earth had consciousness. Wildlife was sacred in ancient times. The bear is one of the most powerful and most feared of the animal kingdom. Dating back thousands of years, the people of Europe left their marks on cave walls—some of these drawings were of bears. Moreover, shamans have revered the bear for its power, but also for its motherhood qualities and healing abilities. Bear medicine is strong medicine. It’s no wonder ancient gods and goddesses were connected to the bear. Learn of the bear goddesses and a bear god here.” ref

     

    The Greek Bear Goddesses

    “The typical illustration of Artemis, Greek Goddess of the Hunt, depicts her with either a hunting dog or stag. However, one of Artemis’ most sacred animals was the bear. Artemis had domain over the forest and all wildlife within it. The bear was the largest and most powerful animal, and so Artemis found it to be a special animal. Any time a bear was killed by the Greeks, Artemis would lay a plague on the people as punishment. Artemis’ cult spread over Greece. In Brauron, young girls played she-bears in honor of Artemis and as a preparation for motherhood. They wore bear masks and acted wildly in worship of her. Artemis’ name is theorized to have meant bear-sanctuary. If we break it down—art is close to ark which means bear, and temis is close to temnis which means sanctuary. We will see in the next section how another Goddess’ name reflects this etymology.” ref

    “Another close association between Artemis and bears is in the tale of one of Artemis’ followers named Callisto. Callisto was a nymph (demi-god nature spirit), and as followers of Artemis, women were charged to stay chaste and pure from men. Callisto was lured into having relations with Zeus, who impregnated her. When Artemis found out, she changed Callisto into a bear. Other versions say Athena was angered when Zeus impregnated the nymph and so she turned Callisto into a bear. The constellations Ursa Major and Ursa Minor (known to the Greeks as Arktos—bear) are said to be the soul remnants of Callisto and her son, and were placed in the sky by Zeus himself.” ref

     

    Celtic Bear Goddess

    “We don’t know a lot about Artio, the Bear Goddess of the ancient Celtic-Gauls, but we know she was intimately connected to bears. The few pieces of evidence we have of her cult’s existence were found in Switzerland and southern Germany. A bronze statue depicting Artio feeding a giant bear surfaced in Bern, Switzerland. Scholars say Artio feeds the bear with a bowl of fruit in her lap. But could it be the other way around? It seems to me the goddess is being confronted by the bear and she is not backing down. There was once a great tale about this encounter, I am sure; however, over time the lore of Artio has been lost. The inscription on the Bern statue translates to “for the goddess Artio”. As with Artemis’ name, there is a clear link to the bear in Artio’s name. Art translates to bear in Gaulish. Could Artio, the Bear Goddess of the Gauls, be the same goddess as the Greeks’ bear goddess Artemis?” ref

    Hungarian Bear Goddess

    “Much of what we know of the Hungarian Bear Goddess Ildiko has been lost in time, or perhaps is just not readily accessible by my research methods. However, according to the Encyclopedia of Spirits by Judika Iles, Ildiko was a goddess of the forest and wildlife. One of her most sacred animals was the bear. Ildiko was like Artemis – she was the goddess of the hunt but also a protector of forest animals. This is because of the need for balance—she guides the hunters but also protects animals in need of preservation or honor. Ildiko is a common name in Hungary with a Germanic origin meaning “warrior”. We can see how a warrior goddess would also be keen of bears—power, wisdom, and ferocity.” ref

    Finnish Bear Goddess

    “Above all, Mielikki is a healing goddess of Finland. She is associated with the woods and with wildlife, just as Artemis and Ildiko, but her main attribute is her healing abilities. She heals the animals when they are sick or wounded. This corresponds directly with the medicine of the bear. Shamans know bears to be healers, and so Mielikki is like the bear in this way. Mielikki is one of the bear goddesses who had a part in the creation of the bear. The story goes that Mielikki left earth and traveled into space, past the moon, in search of the materials with which to make the perfect animal. She returned and stitched together the materials from the heavens to make the bear. The bear is Mielikki’s favorite animal, above all. The tale of Mielikki going into space to find the materials to make the bear correlates nicely with the tales of the other Bear Goddesses Artemis, Callisto, and Zeus putting Callisto into the sky to make the Ursa Major and Minor constellations. There is an asteroid and a mountain on the planet Venus named for Mielikki.” ref

    Slavs and the bear worship

    “Bear was one of the most worshipped animals among the ancient Slavic tribes. It was connected to the god Volos, who was the protector of animals and wilderness. In Slavic folklore, the bear is usually depicted as a male, either as a father, husband or groom.” ref

    Norse or Germanic pagans Odin: The All-Father and Bear God

    “Odin is a popular god among Norse and Germanic pagans and his cult has spread to nearly every part of the modern world. He is known as the All-Father, the One-Eyed, and the terrifying one. He is a wise, yet powerful god and knows how to win a battle. Because of this, warriors and magicians of ancient times sought Odin for his knowledge and ferocity. When depicted, he is usually illustrated as an old man with white hair and beard, cloaked, and carrying a staff. One of his eyes is missing, a sacrifice Odin made to tap into the wisdom of the well of Urðr. Odin is almost always flanked by two of his totem animals—ravens and wolves. However, some claim Odin may also be guarded by two great bears. I’ve yet to find solid evidence of this claim; however, this could be in part because of Odin’s association with the berserkers (shaman warriors) who often wore the pelts of bears. Either way, a god of war, wisdom, healing, and trickery such as Odin would be well received as a friend of the bear.” ref

    Animal Deties? Is the Bull symbol on the side and the big cat a Possible Type of or similar to a Tutelary Deity? Then there is yet another grouping of three animals, one being an odd bulged head bull,  could they Possibly be a Type of or similar to Tutelary Deities? 

    Göbekli Tepe involves a male-dominated society?

    “So far, every known depiction – as long as their sex is clearly recognizable – seems to be male, be it animals or humans. The only exception is a later added graffiti of a single woman on a stone slab in one of the later PPN B buildings. While this may somehow denote the site of Göbekli Tepe as a refuge of male hunters, it does of course not at all mean that women did not play a role in PPN society. There is a wide range of finds clearly connected to women in the contemporary settlements for instance – however, at Göbekli Tepe they (respectively their activity) remain invisible as of yet.” ref 

    I see a similarity in the bear art that I thin could be female as well as doing the same spread leg gesture. 

    Women and Sacred (BEARS) Animals?

    “In the “hunters’ religion” preserved among the northern Finno-Ugric peoples, bear ceremonies are central. The Khanty, Mansi, Nenets, Sami, Finns, and Karelians have all been acquainted with myths and rites connected with the bear. The myths recount that the bear is of heavenly origin and is the son of the god of the sky; it descends from heaven and, when it dies, returns there. There is also a story about a marriage between a bear and a woman from which a tribe of the Skolt Sami (in Finland) is said to be descended. The bear-killing ceremony is divided into two acts—the killing itself and the feast afterward. Killing a bear that was protected by a forest guardian spirit involved a complicated ritual, which ended with bringing the bear home. Women believed that they had to keep at a distance so that the bear would not make them pregnant.” ref  


     

    38,000 Years Old Engraving of an Aurochs with Seeming Totemism Expression?

     

    Bull Worship Patterns At Göbekli Tepe Shed Light On World’s Oldest Civilization. A 12,000-year-old geoglyph in the shape of a giant bull was found carved into a hill along the Gobekli Tepe, Taurus Mountain range in Turkey. The geoglyph has a stone circle star map with a mysterious message known as the Pleiades, an old celestial message. ref

     Ancestor veneration in China: “Chinese traditional primordial religion” has been defined as the traditional religious system organized around the worship of ancestor-gods. Chinese ancestor worship, or Chinese ancestor veneration, also called the Chinese patriarchal religion, is an aspect of the Chinese traditional religion that revolves around the ritual celebration of the deified ancestors and tutelary deities of people with the same surname organized into lineage societies in ancestral shrines. Ancestors, their ghosts, or spirits, and gods are considered part of “this world”, that is, they are neither supernatural (in the sense of being outside nature) nor transcendent in the sense of being organized beyond nature. The ancestors are humans who have become godly beings, beings who keep their individual identities. For this reason, Chinese religion is founded on the veneration of ancestors. Ancestors are believed to be a means of connection to the supreme power of god Tian as they are considered embodiments or reproducers of the creative order of Heaven.” ref 

    “A household deity is a deity or spirit that protects the home, looking after the entire household or certain key members. It has been a common belief in pagan religions as well as in folklore across many parts of the world. Household deities fit into two types; firstly, a specific deity – typically a goddess – often referred to as a hearth goddess or domestic goddess who is associated with the home and hearth, with examples including the Greek Hestia and Norse Frigg. The second type of household deities are those that are not one singular deity, but a type, or species of animistic deity, who usually have lesser powers than major deities. This type was common in the religions of antiquity, such as the Lares of ancient Roman religion, the Gashin of Korean shamanism, and Cofgodas of Anglo-Saxon paganism.” ref 

    My Thoughts on the Evolution of Goddesses/Gods?  

    My speculations are, I would say, the evolution of deities went something like this: family ancestors evolved to metaphorical clan ancestors to deified metaphorical ancestors thus to goddesses and gods. How the natural elements became deified is likely similar believed nature/weather spirits became metaphorical weather spirits with animal/human spirit connections in the family/clan as a form of ancestor spirits and then deified to goddesses and gods. Lastly, I challenge the notions Çatal Höyük figurines as not involve some kind of goddesses in at least some of the figurines found but possibly not others, by some others who have tried to debunk the figurines, saying at most they where ancestors and nothing else. They, in my opinion, are wrongly and are limited in their thinking that even if hey where ancestors, that such sacred ancestors could not become goddesses or gods after death, which I have shown they commonly can in ancestor worship happen through the world. To me, this is equally valid for and especially from the Neolithic onwards.  

    “The geographic locations of the 33 hunter-gatherer societies were analyzed in the study on  Hunter-Gatherers and the Origins of Religion which demonstrated the distribution of the seven characters describing hunter-gatherer religiosity.” ref

      “Recent studies of the evolution of religion have revealed the cognitive underpinnings of belief in supernatural agents, the role of ritual in promoting cooperation, and the contribution of morally punishing high deities/gods/goddesses to the growth and stabilization of human society. The universality of religion across human society points to a deep evolutionary past. However, specific traits of nascent religiosity, and the sequence in which they emerged, have remained unknown. Here we reconstruct the evolution of religious beliefs and behaviors in early modern humans using a global sample of hunter-gatherers and seven traits describing hunter-gatherer religiosity: animism, belief in an afterlife, shamanism, ancestor worship, high deities/gods/goddesses, and worship of ancestors or high deities/gods/goddesses who are active in human affairs. We reconstruct ancestral character states using a time-calibrated supertree based on published phylogenetic trees and linguistic classification and then test for correlated evolution between the characters and for the direction of cultural change. Results indicate that the oldest trait of religion, present in the most recent common ancestor of present-day hunter-gatherers, was animism, in agreement with long-standing beliefs about the fundamental role of this trait. Belief in an afterlife emerged, followed by shamanism and ancestor worship. Ancestor spirits or high deities/gods/goddesses who are active in human affairs were absent in early humans, suggesting a deep history for the egalitarian nature of hunter-gatherer societies. There is a significant positive relationship between most characters investigated, but the trait “high deities/gods/goddesses” stands apart, suggesting that belief in a single creator deity can emerge in a society regardless of other aspects of its religion.” ref 

    “High gods” as single, all-powerful creator deities who may be active in human affairs and supportive of human morality. The variable is coded as four states. It differentiates between societies in which a creator deity is (1) absent, (2) present but inactive in human affairs, (3) active in human affairs but does no support a moral agenda, or (4) active and morally punishing. In 28 of the 33 societies in our sample coded for high gods in 28 of the 33 societies in our sample. Original coding in the additional five societies, based on principal ethnographic sources, completed the coding for all 33 societies is different geographic locations around the earth were analyzed in the study on hunter-gatherers and the origins of religion which demonstrated the distribution of the seven characters describing hunter-gatherer religiosity.” ref 

    “Research results reflect that animism was the earliest and most basic trait of religion because it enables humans to think in terms of supernatural beings or spirits. Animism is not a religion or philosophy, but a feature of human mentality, a by-product of cognitive processes that enable social intelligence, among other capabilities. It is a widespread way of thinking among hunter-gatherers. Animistic thought is a natural by-product of the human capacity for intentionality or “theory of mind mechanism”. This innate cognitive trait allows us to attribute a vital force to animate and inanimate elements in the environment. Once that vital force is assumed, attribution of other human characteristics will follow. Animistic beliefs are generally adaptive in the environments that prevail in hunter-gatherer societies. Animistic thinking would have been present in early hominins, certainly earlier than language. It can be inferred from the analyses, or indeed from the universality of animism, that the presence of animistic belief predates the emergence of belief in an afterlife.” ref 

    ———————————————————————————————————

    Marquis Amon  “That as the article on distribution of the seven characters of Hunter-Gatherer supernatural/spiritual beliefs” concludes that gods can emerge regardless of other aspects of religion. Hunter-gatherer societies were as stated the egalitarian nature of their societies had less use for high gods. In the development of hunter-gatherers and the semipermanent ritual/temple sites where it appears various groups of hunter-gathers mingled and shared ideas could explain the transition towards a more unified prosocial belief. That a place like Catal Hyuk could then progress to a more state-oriented religious society. Essentially we see a transition of Hunter-Gatherers to offset eventually in the steady hybridization of hunter-gather-farming societies. That as populations grew hunter-gathers were less needed and assimilated into an agricultural society that leads to more advanced prosocial and religious belief…ultimately stand-alone high gods became popular.” 

    Marquis Amon  “The Hunter-Gather societies were very different than what you call the “lazy” lifestyle of agricultural societies. So, their experiences would be different and shape their “world view”. The study states that animism is not a religion, but rather erroneous thinking that could very well lead to religious belief. That it is developmental; more specifically a trait shared in the most recent common ancestors of hunter-gatherers. Next, it outlines the relationships of closely related hunter-gather groups, that there is a link between genetic/ethnic/regional groups and the religious or prerequisite beliefs that they shared. Animism and shamanism, along with ancestor worship were most common. High gods and active high gods were the least common. The article also speaks of the prosocial, cooperative nature of religion, or religious belief. To me, the dynamic nature of hunter-gatherer lifestyle had them more closely related to the world in terms of animism than high gods, more specifically high gods. That there wasn’t really a specific feeling of direct moral consequence to anything they did. Yet when they settled in agricultural life the static nature seemed their actions were closely tied and judged by some unseen force(active high god). It is my opinion that this article in its attempt to trace the origins of religions in hunter-gatherers supports the argument that gods are not things people are naturally inclined to believe in. Rather based on the statistics, percentages, high gods or active high gods were minority thinking. This would mean that most early humans and religious development really didn’t include gods in their beliefs. I think that is important to note for the point of psychology in terms of thinking. That gods would be further in the evolution or religion and not default.” 

    ———————————————————————————————————

    But the Bulders of Gobekli Tepe were Animists, how can They then have Deities?

    “In the Indigenous African Spiritual Traditions tend to involve Animism, Ancestor Worship, Humans, and Deities. Few written records exist about the Traditional Beliefs of African spiritual traditions as they were passed orally by griots. A griot is a singing storyteller used to pass down belief systems through generations. Like the game of telephone, oral traditions change over time and explains how the beliefs and customs of one group of Africans are not universally shared by others. There is a great variety of beliefs and practices in African tradition. Indigenous African Animism: The belief in one supreme god, several other gods, spirits of ancestors, sacrifice to secure protection, and the need for a rite of passage are all included in Animism. Animism is the belief that everything on Earth has a powerful spirit that can help or harm human needs. Many Africans believed that the spirits of their dead ancestors were present on Earth and existed in animals or inanimate (lifeless) objects. These spirits would be called upon for help in times of need or trouble. Animism still exists today in Sub-Sahara Africa, Native American tribes in North and South America, and in aborigines in Australia.” ref  

    “In animism: The animistic worldview…such as shamanism, totemism, or ancestor propitiation. These cults do not, in any case, constitute the whole religion of a people. They are, however, institutions that are not bound to one culture area—an Australian totemic cult does bear a “family resemblance” to an African one, though there are differences also.” ref 

    “Indigenous African Spiritual Traditions may believe in a High Deity that created the world and governs the universe. The High Deity is too distant and has limited contact with the daily operation of human life, thus, calling a need for deities or gods and goddesses. The deities control the day-to-day occurrences in human life. These lesser spirits could control creation, nature, leadership, and agriculture.” ref  

    “Religion in pre-Islamic Arabia included indigenous animisticpolytheistic beliefs. Arabian polytheism, the dominant form of religion in pre-Islamic Arabia, was based on veneration of deities and spirits. Worship was directed to various gods and goddesses, including Hubal and the goddesses al-Lāt, al-‘Uzzā, and Manāt, at local shrines and temples such as the Kaaba in Mecca. Deities were venerated and invoked through a variety of rituals, including pilgrimages and divination, as well as ritual sacrifice. Different theories have been proposed regarding the role of Allah in Meccan religion. Many of the physical descriptions of the pre-Islamic gods are traced to idols, especially near the Kaaba, which is said to have contained up to 360 of them. Nomadic religious belief systems and practices are believed to have included fetishism, totemism, and veneration of the dead. Settled urban Arabs, on the other hand, are thought to have believed in a more complex pantheon of deities.” ref 

    But the Bulders of Gobekli Tepe were Totemists how can They then have Deities? 

    “In the pre-Christian worldview and practices of the Norse and other Germanic peoples, we find totemism manifested in two especially prominent and powerful areas: the animal helping spirits, most notably the fylgjur, and the patron animals of shamanic military societies. Many of the gods and goddesses have personal totem animals which may or may not be fylgjur. For example, Odin is particularly associated with wolves, ravens, and horses, Thor with goats, and Freya and Freyr with wild boars. It should come as no surprise, then, that their human devotees have personal totems of their own.” ref  

    “The term totem is derived from the Ojibwa word ototeman, meaning “one’s brother-sister kin.” The Great Spirit had given toodaims (“totems”) to the Ojibwa clans, and because of this act, it should never be forgotten that members of the group are related to one another and on this account may not marry among themselves. There is usually a prohibition or taboo against killing, eating, or touching the totem.  Totemism is frequently mixed with different kinds of other beliefs, such as ancestor worship, ideas of the soul, or animism.” ref 

    “For the Ojibwa the supernatural world held a multitude of spiritual beings and forces. Some of these beings and forces—Sun, Moon, Four Winds, Thunder, and Lightning—were benign, but others—ghosts, witches, and Windigo, a supernatural cannibalistic giant—were malevolent and feared. Presiding over all other spirits was Kiccimanito, or Great Spirit, although this belief may have been a product of European influence. Ojibwa religion was very much an individual affair and centered on the belief in power received from spirits during dreams and visions.” ref

    “The traditional Ojibwe religion, Midewiwin, sets down a path of life to follow (mino-bimaadizi). That path honors promises and elders, and values behaving moderately and in coherence with the natural world. Midewiwin is closely tied to indigenous medicine and healing practices based on an extensive understanding of the ethnobotany of the regions the Ojibwa reside in, as well as songs, dances, and ceremonies.” ref

    “Midewiwin has its origin as: In the beginning, Midemanidoo (Gichimanidoo) made the midemanidoowag. He first created two men, and two women; but they had no power of thought or reason. Then Midemanidoo (Gichimanodoo) made them rational beings. He took them in his hands so that they should multiply; he paired them, and from this sprung the Anishinaabe. When there were people he placed them upon the earth, but he soon observed that they were subject to sickness, misery, as well as death and that unless he provided them with the Sacred Medicine they would soon become extinct.” ref

    “According to Ojibwa religion, Midewiwin rituals were first performed by various supernatural beings to comfort Minabozho—a culture hero and intercessor between the Great Spirit and mortals—on the death of his brother. Minabozho, having pity on the suffering inherent in the human condition, transmitted the ritual to the spirit-being Otter and, through Otter, to the Ojibwa.” ref 

    “Among the Kpelle people of Liberia there is not only group totemism but also individual totemism. The totem also punishes the breach of any taboo. Kpelle totems include animals, plants, and natural phenomena. The kin groups that live in several villages were matrilineal at an earlier time, but during the 20th century, they began to exhibit patrilineal tendencies. The group totems, especially the animal totems, are considered as the residence of the ancestors; they are respected and are given offerings.” ref 

    Kpelle religious beliefs of the vast majority of people hold traditional animistic beliefs. Kpelle religion is rather inchoate, focused vaguely on God, the ancestors, and forest spirits and more sharply on the secret medicine societies and the masked spirits who operate within those societies. The Kpelle recognize a High God who created the world and then retired. They believe in a variety of lesser spirits or genii, including ancestors, personal totems, water spirits, and spirits in magically powerful masks. Witchcraft and sorcery figure prominently in the belief system. Kpelle religious practitioners. The Kpelle recognizes three principal types of shamans (medicine person of either sex): those associated with the Poro and Sande societies, those associated with other specific medicine societies, and those who are independent. The first two types mainly conduct rituals; the third type, and occasionally the second, primarily heal. The Kpelle also utilizes diviners who analyze problems for a fee.” ref 

    But the Bulders of Gobekli Tepe were Shamanists how can They then have Deities? 

    “According to a self-reported practicing hereditary Siberian shaman, claiming to introduce the world to the wisdom of Siberian shamans in the book “Knowledge of Siberian Shamans”. And this book reportedly first draws a map of the shamanic map of the World. When it is seen it is realized that there are 4 deities of the shamanic world. God Tengri, deities who lives on the East, God Ulgen – lives on the South, Goddess Umai stays on the West, God Erlik is on the North.” ref 

    “The most important examples for Shamanism in Siberia are Yakuts, Dolgans, and Tuvans.  A large minority of people in North Asia, particularly in Siberia, follow the religio-cultural practices of shamanism. Some researchers regard Siberia as the heartland of shamanism.” ref, ref

    Yakuts,  are a Turkic ethnic group who mainly live in the Republic of Sakha in the Russian Federation, with some extending to the Amur, Magadan, Sakhalin regions, and the Taymyr and Evenk Autonomous Districts. The Yakut language belongs to the Siberian branch of the Turkic languages.” ref  

    Yakut religion derives from Turkic, Mongolic, Tungusic, and Russian ideas. Labels like “animist,” “shamanist,” or “Russian Orthodox” do not suffice. Ideas of sin are syncretized with concepts of contamination and taboo. Saints and bears are seen as shamanic spirit helpers. Christ is identified with the Yakut Bright Creator Elder God, Aiyy-toyon. A pantheon of gods, believed to live in nine hierarchical eastern heavens, was only one aspect of a complex traditional cosmology that still has meaning for some Yakut. Another crucial dimension was the spirit-soul ( ichchi ) of living beings, rocks, trees, natural forces, and objects crafted by humans. Most honored was the hearth spirit ( yot ichchite ), still fed morsels of food and drink by pious Yakut. Giant trees ( al lukh mas ), deep in the forest, were especially sacred: their ichchi are still given small offerings of coins, scarves, and ribbons. Belief in ichchi is related to ancient ideas of harmony and equilibrium with nature, and to shamanism. Yakut shamanism is a Turkic, Mongolic, and Tungusic blend of belief in the supernatural, with emphasis on the ability of “white,” or benign, shamans to intercede, through prayers and séances, with eastern spirits for the sake of humans. “Black” shamans, communing with evil spirits, could both benefit and harm humans. Shaman as Religious Practitioners. As with other Siberian peoples, Yakut shamans ( oiun if male, udagan if female) combine medical and spiritual practice.” ref 

    “Dolgans (Russian: долганы; self-designation: долган, тыа-киһи, һака(саха)) are a Turkic people, who mostly inhabit Krasnoyarsk Krai, Russia. Most Dolgans practice old shamanistic beliefs; however, most are influenced by Eastern Orthodox Christianity.” ref 

    “Dolgans call all supernatural beings saĭtaan, a word of Arabic origin brought to the Dolgans by the Russians, who borrowed it from Turkic-speaking Muslims. In practice, small stones and anthropomorphic and zoomorphic images carved from wood or reindeer antler, as well as certain household objects, figure as saĭtaans. All these objects are revered because they are bearers of spirits, either independently or by means of the shaman. A saĭtaan may be a personal helper of its owner or the protector of an entire family or nomadic group.” ref 

    “Tuvans are a Turkic ethnic group native to Tuva and Mongolia. They speak Tuvan, a Siberian Turkic language. They are also regarded in Mongolia as one of the Uriankhai peoples. Tuvans have historically been cattle-herding nomads, tending to herds of goats, sheep, camels, reindeer, cattle, and yaks for the past thousands of years. The traditional religion of Tuvans is a type of Tengriism, or Turkic animistic shamanism. The religion is still widely practiced alongside Tibetan Buddhism.” ref 

    Tengri, ‘Sky God’ and Mongolian shamanism?

    “Worship of Tengri is Tengrism. The core beings in Tengrism are the Heavenly-Father (Tengri/Tenger Etseg) and the Earth Mother (Eje/Gazar Eej). It involves shamanism, animism, totemism, and ancestor worship. Tengrism is an ancient and medieval Central AsianEurasian Steppe sky god Tengri-centered state religion as well as a number of modern TurkoMongolic native religious movements and teachings. It was the prevailing religion of the Turks and Mongols (including Bulgars and Xiongnu), Huns, and, possibly, the Manchus and Magyars, as the religion of the several medieval states: Göktürk Khaganate, Western Turkic Khaganate, Eastern Turkic Khaganate, Old Great Bulgaria, Danube Bulgaria, Volga Bulgaria, and Eastern Tourkia (Khazaria). In Irk Bitig, Tengri is mentioned as Türük Tängrisi (God of Turks). According to many academics, at the imperial level, especially by the 12th–13th centuries, Tengrism was a monotheistic religion; most contemporary Tengrists present it as being monotheistic too. The forms of the name Tengri (Old Turkic: Täŋri‎) among the ancient and modern Turks and Mongols are Tengeri, Tangara, Tangri, Tanri, Tangre, Tegri, Tingir, Tenkri, Teri, Ter, and Ture. The name Tengri (“the Sky”) is derived from Old Turkic: Tenk‎ (“daybreak”) or Tan (“dawn”). Mongolia is sometimes poetically called the “Land of Eternal Blue Sky” (Munkh Khukh Tengriin Oron) by its inhabitants.” ref 

    “Tengri was the national god of the Göktürks and the Göktürk khans based their power on a mandate from Tengri. These rulers were generally accepted as the sons of Tengri who represented him on Earth. They wore titles such as tengrikut, kutluġ or kutalmysh, based on the belief that they attained the kut, the mighty spirit granted to these rulers by Tengri. Tengri was the chief deity worshipped by the ruling class of the Central Asian steppe peoples in the 6th to 9th centuries (Turkic peoples, Mongols, and Hungarians). It lost its importance when the Uighuric kagans proclaimed Manichaeism the state religion in the 8th century. The worship of Tengri was brought into Eastern Europe by the Huns and early Bulgars. Tengri assumes the name Tengri Ülgen and withdraws into Heaven from which he tries to provide people with guidance through sacred animals that he sends among them. The Ak Tengris occupy the fifth level of Heaven. Shaman priests who want to reach Tengri Ülgen never get further than this level, where they convey their wishes to the divine guides. Tengri is considered to be the chief god who created all things. In addition to this celestial god, they also had minor divinities (Alps) that served the purposes of Tengri. As Gök Tanrı, he was the father of the sun (Koyash) and moon (Ay Tanrı) and also Umay, Erlik, and sometimes Ülgen. Tengri is considered to be strikingly similar to the Indo-European sky god, *Dyeus, and the structure of the reconstructed Proto-Indo-European religion is closer to that of the early Turks than to the religion of any people of Near Eastern or Mediterranean antiquity.” ref 

    “For the Huichol — a small tribe of around 15,000 who live in the Sierra Madre Mountains of central-western Mexico, shamanism is a way of being — the practice of honoring all life and remembering how we relate to the world around us through ceremony, prayer, and pilgrimage. The Huichols say that human beings are in the middle, between the earth and the sky, and that we are mirrors of the gods.” ref  

    “The pre-Christian religion of the Germanic peoples teems with shamanic elements – so much so that it would be impossible to discuss them all here. Our discussion will have to be confined to those that are the most significant. We’ll start with Odin, the father of the gods, who possesses numerous shamanic traits. From there, we’ll examine shamanism in Norse magical traditions that were part of the female sphere of traditional northern European social life, and then move on to the male sphere of the berserkers and other “warrior-shamans” before concluding. Odin, the chief of the gods, is often portrayed as a consummate shamanic figure in the oldest primary sources that contain information about the pre-Christian ways of the Germanic peoples. His very name suggests this: “Odin” (Old Norse Óðinn) is a compound word comprised of óðr, “ecstasy, fury, inspiration,” and the suffix -inn, the masculine definite article, which, when added to the end of another word like this, means something like “the master of” or “a perfect example of.” The name “Odin” can, therefore, be most aptly translated as “The Master of Ecstasy.” The eleventh-century historian Adam of Bremen confirms this when he translates “Odin” as “The Furious.” This establishes a link between Odin and the ecstatic trance states that comprise one of the defining characteristics of shamanism.” ref 

    “Odin’s shamanic spirit-journeys are well-documented. The Ynglinga Saga records that he would “travel to distant lands on his own errands or those of others” while he appeared to others to be asleep or dead. Another instance is recorded in the Eddic poem “Baldur’s Dreams,” where Odin rides Sleipnir, an eight-legged horse typical of northern Eurasian shamanism, to the underworld to consult a dead seeress on behalf of his son. Odin, like shamans all over the world, is accompanied by many familiar spirits, most notably the two ravens Hugin and Munin. The shaman must typically undergo a ritual death and rebirth in order to acquire his or her powers, and Odin underwent exactly such an ordeal when he discovered the runes. Having done so, he became one of the cosmos’s wisest, most knowledgeable, and most magically powerful beings. In any case, there were other forms of shamanism that were much more socially acceptable for men to practice. One of the central institutions of traditional Germanic society was the band of elite, ecstatic, totemistic warriors. Some of the warriors in these warbands were berserkers. These were no ordinary soldiers; the initiation rituals, fighting techniques, and other spiritual practices of these bands were such that their members could be aptly characterized as “warrior-shamans.” ref 

    “Considering the nature and practices of Finnic shamanism, it is important to recognize the vital role that shamanic godheads, such as Väinämöinen, Ilmarinen, Lemminkäinen, and Joukahainen have played in the Finno-Baltic pagan tradition as well as in the development of deep cosmological understanding and unity within a specific mortal shaman. Additionally, such mortal religious leaders may have influenced popular conceptions of Finno-Baltic pagan cosmology – through their powerful and influential role within pre-Christian communities. The cosmology and shamanic practices of pre-Christian Finnish society largely deppends upon the accurate mapping of the aforementioned deities, and the recognition of any elements that may have been transferred upon their godheads at a later time due to the contact with other cultures.” ref 

    But the Bulders of Gobekli Tepe did Ancestor Worship how can They then have Deities? 

    “Primitive agriculture is called horticulture by anthropologists rather than farming because it is carried on like simple gardening, supplementary to hunting and gathering. It differs from farming also in its relatively more primitive technology. It is typically practiced in forests, where the loose soil is easily broken up with a simple stick, rather than on grassy plains with heavy sod. Nor do horticulturalists use fertilizer intensively or crop rotation, terracing, or irrigation. Horticulture is therefore much less productive than agriculture. The villages are small—some no larger than many hunting-gathering settlements—and the overall population density is low compared with farming regions.  In primitive culture: Horticultural societies…society does not usually practice ancestor worship as does the hierarchical society. Among horticultural peoples with chiefdoms, the chief’s ancestors, in time, become gods. The most remote ancestors, the founders of the chiefly lineage, are the most important gods; more recent ancestors and those of related but collateral lines have ref, ref  

    “Ancestor veneration is a practice that nearly all pagan peoples, past and present, have shared, and the pre-Christian Norse and other Germanic peoples were certainly no exception. The dead remained in their community’s collective memory long after their passing, and were believed to confer blessings upon the land and the people they left behind. This may have been especially so if they were properly-revered by their descendants. In Old Norse literature, the most frequent gift of the ancestors is the fertility of the land, which, it hardly needs to be pointed out, corresponds very well to the ecological role of a decaying body – providing nourishment for other, living members of the ecological community.” ref  

    Divine heroes/Hero worship in Finno-Ugric religion does not point to culture heroes who are described in myth and whose actions are located in cosmogonic contexts. In general, culture heroes are not worshipped. The matter is otherwise when dealing with divinized historical figures, the cults of which are found among several of the Finno-Ugric peoples. Mardan of the Yelabuga Udmurt is viewed as the progenitor of 11 villages and the one who led the dwellers therein from the north to their present habitations. There is a sacrificial ceremony in his honor every year. Also, there are signs of the worship of tribal chiefs—for example, in the forest sanctuary worship of the Udmurt (lud) and the Volga Finns (keremet). The best-known of the Cheremis princes, called “the old man of the Nemda Mountain,” is a great ancient warrior under whose rule the people were strong and united. According to this myth, he promised to return when war threatened; once he was called for unnecessarily and, after discovering the betrayal, he ordered the annual propitiation sacrifice of a foal. The Ob Ugrians have a large number of “local gods” of whom pictures have been made and who are sometimes associated with ancient mighty men, heroes, and saints. A death doll made by a shaman may also have been the origin of a hero cult; the Nenets have been known to cherish and feed such a doll for as long as 50 years.” ref 

    Ancestor veneration in China: “Chinese traditional primordial religion” has been defined as the traditional religious system organized around the worship of ancestor-gods. Chinese ancestor worship, or Chinese ancestor veneration, also called the Chinese patriarchal religion, is an aspect of the Chinese traditional religion that revolves around the ritual celebration of the deified ancestors and tutelary deities of people with the same surname organized into lineage societies in ancestral shrines. Ancestors, their ghosts, or spirits, and gods are considered part of “this world”, that is, they are neither supernatural (in the sense of being outside nature) nor transcendent in the sense of being organized beyond nature. The ancestors are humans who have become godly beings, beings who keep their individual identities. For this reason, Chinese religion is founded on the veneration of ancestors. Ancestors are believed to be a means of connection to the supreme power of god Tian as they are considered embodiments or reproducers of the creative order of Heaven.” ref 

    Ancestor Worship in Ancient China dates back to the Neolithic period: “The earliest clear evidence of ancestor worship in China dates to the Yangshao society which existed in the Shaanxi Province area before spreading to parts of northern and central China during the Neolithic period (8,000 to 3,000 years ago in this case). In the Shang dynasty (3,600 – 3,046  years ago) the ancestors of the royal family were thought to reside in heaven within the feudal hierarchy of other spirit-gods. These ancestors, it was believed, could be contacted via a shaman. In the Zhou period (3,046 – 2,256 years ago), the ancestors of rulers had their own dedicated temples, typically within the royal palace complexes, and the presence of such a temple was even a definition of a capital city in the 2,400-2,300 years ago.” ref 

    “In some Afro-diasporic cultures, ancestors are seen as being able to intercede on behalf of the living, often as messengers between humans and the gods. As spirits who were once human themselves, they are seen as being better able to understand human needs than would a divine being. Ancestor veneration is prevalent throughout Africa and serves as the basis of many religions. It is often augmented by a belief in a supreme being, but prayers and/or sacrifices are usually offered to the ancestors who may ascend to becoming a kind of minor deities themselves.” ref  

    “Amongst Hindus and Sikhs, ancestors may be worshiped as Gramadevata (village deity) or clan deity, such as Jathera (also called Dhok, from Sanskrit Dahak or fire).” ref 

    “Ancestor worship in Assam, which is a state in India, situated south of the eastern Himalayas along the Brahmaputra and Barak River valleys. In the Ahom religion is based on ancestor-worship. The Ahoms believe that a man after his death remains as ‘Dam’ (ancestor) only for a few days and soon he becomes ‘Phi’ (God). They also believe that the soul of a man which is immortal unites with the supreme soul, possesses the qualities of a spiritual being and always blesses the family.” ref  

    “Ancestor Worship in the Philippines Anito, also spelled anitu, refers to ancestor spirits, nature spirits, and deities (diwata) in the indigenous animistic religions of precolonial Philippines. It can also refer to carved humanoid figures, the taotao, made of wood, stone, or ivory, that represent these spirits. In the animistic indigenous religions of the precolonial Philippines, ancestor spirits were one of the two major types of spirits (anito) with whom shamans communicate. Ancestor spirits were known as umalagad (lit. “guardian” or “caretaker”). They can be the spirits of actual ancestors or generalized guardian spirits of a family.” ref, ref 

    “In Japan, a family or a community may worship deified ancestral spirits as their “ancestral deity” (sojin) or “tutelary deity” (ujigami) guardian/patron deity, clan deity. Parent deities, are an extension of the image of parenthood to kami, expressing the belief that kami care for human beings in the same way that human parents care for their children. The term is believed to describe the close relationship between kami and humans, one embodying a particularly intimate affection toward the kami.” ref 

    “Ancestral deities include family and communal forbears, heroes, and deities associated with the household or with origin myths of humankind. Not all mythical forbears have the status of divinities, nor do all deceased forbears achieve the status of venerated ancestors, or heroes.” ref 

    Tutelary Deities

    “A tutelary is a deity or spirit who is a guardian, patron, or protector of a particular place, geographic feature, person, lineage, nation, culture, or occupation. The etymology of “tutelary” expresses the concept of safety, and thus of guardianship. Chinese folk religion, both past and present, includes a myriad of tutelary deities. Exceptional individuals may become deified after death.  In Hinduism, tutelary deities are known as ishta-devata and Kuldevi or Kuldevta. Gramadevata are guardian deities of villages. In Korean shamanism, jangseung and sotdae were placed at the edge of villages to frighten off demons. They were also worshiped as deities. In Shinto, the spirits, or kami, which give life to human bodies come from nature and return to it after death. Ancestors are therefore themselves tutelaries to be worshiped. In Philippine animism, Diwata or Lambana are deities or spirits that inhabit sacred places like mountains and mounds and serve as guardians. Thai provincial capitals have tutelary city pillars and palladiums. The guardian spirit of a house is known as Chao Thi or Phra Phum. Almost every Buddhist household in Thailand has a miniature shrine housing this tutelary deity, known as a spirit house. And in Tibetan Buddhism has Yidam as a tutelary deity.” ref 

    Göbekli Tepe Mother Goddess?

    Found in Southeastern Turkey and is dated to around 11,500 – 11,000 years ago. It is a relief of a naked woman in a crouched position (birthing mother or sex goddess position may hold a dualism in its meaning). This ritual site includes two phases of use believed to be of a social or ritual nature dating back to the 10th–8th millennium BCE. During the first phase, belonging to the Pre-Pottery Neolithic A (PPNA), circles of massive T-shaped stone pillars that are the world’s oldest known megaliths. More than 200 pillars in about 20 circles are currently known through geophysical surveys. Each pillar has a height of up to 6 m (20 ft) and weighs up to 10 tons. They are fitted into sockets that were hewn out of the bedrock. ref

    In the second phase, belonging to the Pre-Pottery Neolithic B (PPNB), the erected pillars are smaller and stood in rectangular rooms with floors of polished lime. The site was abandoned after the PPNB. Younger structures date to classical times. The details of the structure’s function remain a mystery. It has been hypothesized that the site was a sanctuary where people from a wide region periodically congregated, not a settlement. Nevalı Çori, held similar structures as Göbekli Tepe, where there was unearthed the first of the huge T-shaped pillars. ref

    At Two taller pillars stand facing one another at the center of each circle. Whether the circles were provided with a roof is uncertain. Stone benches designed for sitting are found in the interior. Many of the pillars are decorated with abstract, enigmatic pictograms and carved animal reliefs. The pictograms may represent commonly understood sacred symbols, as known from Neolithic cave paintings elsewhere. The reliefs depict mammals such as lions, bulls, boars, foxes, gazelles and donkeys; snakes and other reptiles, arthropods such as insects and arachnids; and birds, particularly vultures. Vultures also feature prominently in the iconography of Çatalhöyük and Jericho. Few humanoid figures have appeared in the art at Göbekli Tepe. However, some of the T-shaped pillars have human arms carved on their lower half, suggesting to site excavator Schmidt that they are intended to represent the bodies of stylized humans (or perhaps gods). ref

    Damien Marie AtHope’s Art

    ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref

    Lajja Gauri Style

    1.  Lajja Gauri. China, Majiayao. 3,200-2,000 BCE or around 5,220 to 4,020 years ago. ref
    2.  Lajja Gauri. India, Kashmir. ref
    3.  Lajja Gauri. Egypt. ref
    4.  Lajjā Gaurī a lotus-headed Hindu goddess. ref
    5.  Lajja Gauri. Nepal. ref
    6.  Lajjā Gaurī lotus-headed goddess. India. ref

    Sheela na gig Style

    1.  Sheela na gig. Ireland. ref
    2. Sheila Na Gig. ref
    3. Sheila Na Gig. ref
    4. Sheela na gig. Ireland. ref

    A Sitting Goddess from Sha’ar HaGolan

    Above is a mother goddess figure dating to around 10,000 years old figurines from Israel, and Neolithic stylized figurines and Agricultural Civilization and Religion. This Neolithic site is the most important and largest in Israel. The Venus is made of clay and is assembled of various parts. ref

    The Yarmukian culture was a Neolithic culture of the ancient Levant. It was the first culture in prehistoric Israel and one of the oldest in the Levant to make use of pottery. The Yarmukian derives its name from the Yarmouk River which flows near its type site at Sha’ar HaGolan, a kibbutz at the foot of the Golan Heights. Yarmukian culture, a Pottery Neolithic culture that inhabited parts of Israel and Jordan. The site, dated to ca. 8,400–8000 years ago, is located in the central Jordan Valley, on the northern bank of the Yarmouk River. Its size is around 20 hectares, making it one of the largest settlements in the world at that time. Although other Yarmukian sites have been identified since, Sha’ar HaGolan is the largest, probably indicating its role as the Yarmukian center.

    Exotic objects discovered during the excavations include seashells from the Mediterranean, polished stone vessels made of alabaster (or marble), and blades made from obsidian from Turkey. The presence of obsidian points to trade connections extending over 435 miles away. At the site of ‘Ain Ghazal, located along the banks of the Zarqa River near Amman, Jordan, the early Pottery Neolithic period is dated from 8,400 to 7,000 years ago.

    Among the outstanding art objects from Sha’ar HaGolan are figurines in human form made of fired clay or carved on pebbles. The overwhelming majority are female images, interpreted as representing a goddess. The clay figurines are extravagant in their detail, giving them a surrealistic appearance, while the pebble figurines are minimalist and abstract in form.

    Besides the site at Sha’ar HaGolan, 20 other Yarmukian sites have been identified in Israel, Jordan and Lebanon. These include:

    Although the Yarmukian culture occupied limited regions of northern Israel and northern Jordan, Yarmukian pottery has been found elsewhere in the region, including the Habashan Street excavations in Tel-Aviv and as far north as Byblos, Lebanon. ref

    Kilisik Statue

    A statue belonging to the Urfa culture, as in Göbekli Tepe, dating to about 10,000 years ago was found and one wonders about the significantly placed holed stone, symbolizes the Cosmic Mother, is the purpose of the synchronization between star and stone to indicate she is about to give birth and since Pillar 18, the Birthing Posture, is right behind the holed stone possibly relating to the birthing mother goddess in a kind of temple where the rites of birth, (morning sun/beginning moon crescent) death (evening sun/ending moon crescent) and rebirth (it starts all over again) were celebrated both in its carved art and within the architectural design of its larger enclosures, which formed symbolic wombs. One may from this start to visualize early paganistic shamans gathered in the circle, and we can easily see that ancient figurines and statues, such as the pillars of Nevalı Çori, Göbekli Tep are ritual instructions. Mysteriously, they filled in the complex with huge amounts of fill 10,000 years ago. refref

    This fat 10,000 – 7,500 years old Neolithic figurine mother goddess and/or wise grandmother ancestor-spirit figure (seemingly this represented a real person possibly as the representations of fat rolls seem to be to anatomically correct to be a guess) or a little of both most likely and has been proposed as serving a ritual purpose. The figure is 6.7 inches tall, weighs 2.2lbs, and was made of marmoreal stone. Along with the fact that unlike some others found in garbage pits this figurine was found beneath a platform along with a piece of obsidian which suggests that it may have been placed there as part of some ritual. Çatal Höyük is recognized as one of the best archaeological sites in the world for understanding prehistoric humanity. It is the largest and best-preserved Neolithic site found to date. While most of the world was populated by nomadic hunter-gatherers, Çatal Höyük was a large “honeycomb city” settlement with as many as 10,000 people described as a massive labyrinth of mud-brick houses which has 18 successive layers of  building. “These figurines symbolize old women that have high status in the society instead of goddesses,” excavation supervisor Professor Ian Hodder of Stanford University said about the figurines that have distinctive bellies, breasts, and hips. ref, ref

    Hacilar 9,000 years ago Anatolia South Western Turkey

    Called a Mother Goddess and made of clay. It has been noted that the continuation at Hacilar of the goddess figurine tradition advanced westward from Çatal höyük. This figure also is a variance on the sitting goddess position. ref

    Numerous nude female figures, made of clay, are quite remarkable, and possibly represent some divinity. Ceramics from Hacilar show similarities with those of the Halaf culture from about the same period. There are also similarities in their figurines. At level II (7,300 years ago), the village was fortified and had a small temple.

    The settlement of level I, dating after 7,000 years ago, differs significantly from the previous layers, so it is believed that there were newcomers who settled here. The site is now heavily fortified. The pottery is of high quality and is generally painted in red on a cream background. ref

    The anthropomorphic seeming clan male ancestor bear motif Ain al-Jerba/Ein el-Jarba is an Early Coper era settlement ascribed to the Wadi Rabah culture, dating to the 8,000 years ago, 12 miles south-east of Haifa, Israel in the Jezreel Valley are similar images found in turkey. refref

    CONCLUSIONS from the 2017, 32nd Annual EAU Congress, London, United Kingdom, that the prehistoric phallic presentations had been supposed to link strongly to the terms as ‘strength’ and
    ‘power’ and addition to ‘virility’ and ‘fertility’ and reported that the early known examples of phallic image
    in the pioneer human art were dated back about 30,000 years ago. Neolithic period is regarded as a big
    revolution of human social life that means the beginning of the settlement period of mankind. The Neolithic
    process was discernible in the period from 11,000 to 6,000 BC for Anatolia. The earliest known “Cult
    center” Göbekli Tepe-Sanliurfa (12,000-11,000 years ago) dated back the initial part of this period a little over 185 miles east to the location of the present cave art. Anatolian cave artists did not hesitate to draw even women with phallus (Bafa –Latmos, 10,000 years ago). The erected penis is regarded as the symbol of a giver of life and linked with the creator of the Universe in the initial period of art. Thus possibly that present erected penis vitalizes the soil as in the form of agricultural products. The lower limbs and the penis were at the same ground level so that there was a close relationship between the ground and the tip of the penis. The creative contact between them seemed to be inevitable. In addition, hands-up to the sky and the phallus downward to the ground depiction might be connector
    position of men between the creators that located at the sky and the fields that supply goods such as
    agricultural products. these simple cave paintings had been drawn with red ocher composed of iron oxide and iron binding liquid that applied to rock via bare fingers or with simple tools. In the archeological point of view, they also claimed that these findings of Cilicia region of prehistoric Anatolia were involving of the almost complete ten human figures while they were dancing for celebrating the onset of spring or the start of harvest season as a reflection of the belief system of the time and, in connection to this theory, caves harboring the rock art were supposed to be “cult centers” of 8,000–7,000 years ago. And it was well known that the similar examples of Anatolia had been related with the Neolithic age of these periods.

    Below is but a few 8,000 years old Valcamonica Italy Geometric-Symbolic Figure Petroglyphs in Northwestern Italy with an androgynous figure, a penis and balls and boobs too showing a two or dual “two-spirited” (or maybe an intersex/trans person) probably Late Neolithic. Others display big praying figure with big hands and big feet is surrounded by a great number of schematic symbols. On the left is depicted prayers, dogs, circles, and symbols, also probably from Late Neolithic. The other is an anomalous anthropomorphic figure with an enormous phallus, probably a god of Celtic Period. The chronological ambit covers a very long period. In the site of “I Verdi” we find characteristic figures of every prehistoric age: from Neolithic to Calcolithic, to Bronze and Iron Age as well. The site name derived from the Proto-Germanic elements *langaz + *bardaz; equivalent to long beard. Some sources derive the second element instead is from Proto-Germanic *bardǭ, *barduz (“axe”), related to German Barte (“axe”) and constitute the largest collections of prehistoric petroglyphs in the world. The figures are sometimes simply superimposed without apparent order. Others instead appear to have a logical relationship between them; for example, a picture of a religious rite or a hunting scene or fight. This approach explains the scheme of images, each of which is an ideogram that is not the real object, but its “idea”. Their function pertains to celebratory rituals: commemorative, initiatory and propitiatory; first in the field of religion, then later even secular, which were held on special occasions, either single or recurrent. ref, ref, ref, ref

    Marble Neolithic Double Goddess dated to around 8,500 years ago at Çatal Höyük, Turkey. Which could represent the goddess connections to the dual nature of day and night or the sun “day-star” (possible relations to the realm of the living, Earth) and the moon the “night star” (possible relations to the realm of the dead, Heaven) goddess?

    At Çatal Höyük there was it seems little to no separation between the sacred and the mundane and apparently all of the rooms were domestic in nature even in the presumably important early pagan temple rooms, with a  higher concentration of wall paintings, bullhorns and bas-reliefs functioned as sanctuaries or shrines. Moreover, “All buildings appear to fluctuate through their lifetimes along a spectrum of elaboration and domesticity, with elements of both extremes always present”. While access to a sanctuary could be privileged, it is less likely that the movement of inhabitants in domestic spaces would be necessarily restricted. A study of Berber houses is instructive as a way of appreciating the cognitive effect of living in domestic spaces that are rich with cultural imagery. The Berber people are an ethnic group indigenous to North Africa, primarily inhabiting Algeria, northern MaliMauritaniaMorocco, northern NigerTunisiaLibya and a part of western Egypt. A study discovered that children brought up surrounded by traditional images within Berber houses absorbed Berber concepts through “an education of attention” that focused and informed their perceptions.

    In a similar way, ritual art, ritual architecture, figurines, and the
    experience of reproducing symbolic imagery on cloth, walls and skin at Çatal Höyük would have created a
    vital, an interactive milieu in which cultural meanings were most readily absorbed. After all, “The house
    at Çatalhöyük is a microcosm of the society as the whole in which life and death are staged, ritualized and mediated.
    Makilam, a Berber scholar raised in Kabylia, northern Algeria, describes the traditional Berber house in ways that suggest parallels with Çatalhöyük. The house reproduces a tripartite macrocosm—an underworld, an earthly world, and an upper world. Its interior functions like a living organism and are infused with vital forces, the “guardian spirits of the home” that dwell in every object. According to Makilam, a Kabyle woman views the interior of her home as an extension of her own body, where even the smallest actions of everyday life have the value of a ceremony. “In its
    anthropomorphic image and as a result of the artistic work of the women painters of Kabylia, the house represents the inner temple of a woman and the essential fecundity of her body. In that vital world, embellished with symbols, the lives of the ancestors are extended into the lives of the living through the continuous transmission of cultural knowledge. , ref

     

    Bear-Goddess & Three Bulls

    Hybrid imagery and symbolism at Çatal Höyük to which I surmise could express the mother-bear goddess (ie. roaring that could represent thunderstorms like lions or bulls in association with goddesses). The three bulls to me could represent the three stages of the moon. Mother goddess at the site of Catal Hoyuk in Turkey dating to around 9,400-8,000 years ago.

    Although the art of Çatal Höyük may indicate an association between men, hunting and wild animals, and between women and plants and agriculture, current evidence indicates neither a patriarchy nor a matriarchy, but possibly a society in which gender did not rigidly determine one’s role in life. refref

    Sumerian first goddess “Nammu” ?

    Modern historians have suggested that Sumer was first permanently settled between around 7,500 and 6,000 years ago by a West Asian people who spoke the Sumerian language (pointing to the names of cities, rivers, basic occupations, etc., as evidence), an agglutinative language isolate. These prehistoric people are now called “proto-Euphrateans” or “Ubaidians“, and are theorized to have evolved from the Samarra culture of northern Mesopotamia.

    The Ubaidians, though never mentioned by the Sumerians themselves, are assumed by modern-day scholars to have been the first civilizing force in Sumer. They drained the marshes for agriculture, developed trade, and established industries, including weaving, leather-work, metal-work, masonry, and pottery. Some scholars think the Sumerian language may originally have been that of the hunting and fishing peoples who lived in the marshland and the Eastern Arabia littoral region and were part of the Arabian bifacial culture.

    The term Sumerian is the common name given to the ancient non-Semitic-speaking inhabitants of Mesopotamia by the East Semitic-speaking Akkadians. The Sumerians referred to themselves as “the black-headed people”, and to their land as “place of the noble lords”. Proto-writing in the prehistory dates back to the earliest texts from the cities of Uruk and Jemdet Nasr and date back to 5,300 years ago, early cuneiform script writing emerged in 5,000 years ago.

    Sumerian civilization took form in the Uruk period (4th millennium BC), continuing into the Jemdet Nasr and Early Dynastic periods. During the 3rd millennium BC, a close cultural symbiosis developed between the Sumerians, who spoke a language isolate, and Akkadians, which gave rise to widespread bilingualism. The influence of Sumerian on Akkadian (and vice versa) is evident in all areas, from lexical borrowing on a massive scale, to syntacticmorphological, and phonological convergence. ref, ref, ref

    Headless (intentionally broken in a ritual?) sitting decorated mother goddess from Neolithic site of Catal Hoyuk in Turkey (9,400-6,000 years ago). ref

    Damien Marie AtHope’s Art

    ref, ref, ref, ref, ref

    Seated Woman of Çatalhöyük

    “The Seated Woman of Çatalhöyük (also Çatal Höyük) is a baked-clay, nude female form, seated between feline-headed arm-rests. It is generally thought to depict a corpulent and fertile Mother goddess in the process of giving birth while seated on her throne, which has two hand rests in the form of feline (lioness, leopard, or panther) heads in a Mistress of Animals motif. The statuette, one of several iconographically similar ones found at the site, is associated to other corpulent prehistoric goddess figures, of which the most famous is the Venus of Willendorf. It is a neolithic sculpture shaped by an unknown artist, and was completed in approximately 6000 BCE.” ref

    Kubaba

    “Kubaba is the only queen on the Sumerian King List, which states she reigned for 100 years – roughly in the Early Dynastic III period (ca. 2500–2330 BCE) of Sumerian history. A connection between her and a goddess known from HurroHittite and later Luwian sources cannot be established on the account of spatial and temporal differences. Kubaba is one of very few women to have ever ruled in their own right in Mesopotamian history. Most versions of the king list place her alone in her own dynasty, the 3rd Dynasty of Kish, following the defeat of Sharrumiter of Mari, but other versions combine her with the 4th dynasty, that followed the primacy of the king of Akshak. Before becoming monarch, the king list says she was an alewife, brewess or brewster, terms for a woman who brewed alcohol.” ref 

    “Kubaba was a Syrian goddess associated particularly closely with Alalakh and Carchemish. She was adopted into the Hurrian and Hittite pantheons as well. After the fall of the Hittite empire, she continued to be venerated by Luwians. A connection between her and the similarly named legendary Sumerian queen Kubaba of Kish, while commonly proposed, cannot be established due to spatial and temporal differences. Emmanuel Laroche proposed in 1960 that Kubaba and Cybele were one and the same. This view is supported by Mark Munn, who argues that the Phrygian name Kybele developed from Lydian adjective kuvavli, first changed into kubabli and then simplified into kuballi, and finally kubelli. However, such an adjective is a purely speculative construction.” ref

    Cybele

    “Cybele (Phrygian: “Kubileya/Kubeleya Mother”, perhaps “Mountain Mother”) is an Anatolian mother goddess; she may have a possible forerunner in the earliest neolithic at Çatalhöyük, where statues of plump women, sometimes sitting, have been found in excavations. Phrygia‘s only known goddess, she was probably its national deity. Greek colonists in Asia Minor adopted and adapted her Phrygian cult and spread it to mainland Greece and to the more distant western Greek colonies around the 6th century BCE. In Greece, Cybele met with a mixed reception. She became partially assimilated to aspects of the Earth-goddess Gaia, of her possibly Minoan equivalent Rhea, and of the harvest–mother goddess Demeter. Some city-states, notably Athens, evoked her as a protector, but her most celebrated Greek rites and processions show her as an essentially foreign, exotic mystery-goddess who arrives in a lion-drawn chariot to the accompaniment of wild music, wine, and a disorderly, ecstatic following.” ref

    “Uniquely in Greek religion, she had a eunuch mendicant priesthood. Many of her Greek cults included rites to a divine Phrygian castrate shepherd-consort Attis, who was probably a Greek invention. In Greece, Cybele became associated with mountains, town and city walls, fertile nature, and wild animals, especially lions. In Rome, Cybele became known as Magna Mater (“Great Mother”). The Roman State adopted and developed a particular form of her cult after the Sibylline oracle in 205 BCE recommended her conscription as a key religious ally in Rome’s second war against Carthage (218 to 201 BCE). Roman mythographers reinvented her as a Trojan goddess, and thus an ancestral goddess of the Roman people by way of the Trojan prince Aeneas. As Rome eventually established hegemony over the Mediterranean world, Romanized forms of Cybele’s cults spread throughout Rome’s empire. Greek and Roman writers debated and disputed the meaning and morality of her cults and priesthoods, which remain controversial subjects in modern scholarship.” ref

    Throned/Seated Mother Goddess of Çatal Höyük

    Bulls and Lions represent the roaring in the Sky Produced by Thunderstorms.

    The around 8,000 to 7,500 years old Seated Woman of Çatalhöyük (also Çatal Höyük) is a baked-clay, nude female form, seated between feline-headed arm-rests possible lionesses, reportedly found n a grain bin similarly to a 7,200-year-old pottery and food offering “model” in what appears to be a grain silo, the current oldest example of a ritual propitiating the gods to preserve the crops or harvest, surmise archaeologists. Found at the Tel Tsaf site turned out to have silos for intensive food storage, thus the unique vessel purportedly attesting to evidence of sacred paganistic food storage rituals Israeli. refref

    The silos at Tel Tsaf reached a storage capacity estimated at 15–30 tons of grain, a clear indication of the accumulation of surpluses on a scale unprecedented in the ancient Near East. Also found at Tel Tsaf was a 7,000-year-old copper awl unearthed at the site of Tel Tsaf, Israel, suggesting that cast metal technology was introduced to the region centuries earlier than previously thought. Tel Tsaf is dated to around 7,200–6,700 years ago, the Wadi Rabah culture phase is dated to around 7,500 to 6,500 years ago and pre-dating the Ghassulian culture phase dated to around 6,400 to 5,500 years ago centered in Jordanref, ref, refref

    Copper metallurgy was likely developed in northern fertile crescent and there are isolated copper axes and adzes are known from Catalhoyuk in Anatolia Mesopotamia by around 9,500 years ago and the earliest known copper is found in Syria at sites such as Tell Halaf, about 8,500 years ago. The Halaf culture ranges around 8,100 to 7,100 years ago. The period is a continuous development out of the earlier Pottery Neolithic and is located primarily in south-eastern TurkeySyria, and northern Iraq, although the Halaf-influenced material is found throughout Greater Mesopotamiarefref

    At also spelled Ain al-Fijah or Ein el-Jarba there seems like “food-offering ritual jars” is an Early copper age settlement ascribed to the Wadi Rabah culture, dating to the 6th millennium BC, located ca. 20 km south-east of Haifa, Israel in the Jezreel Valley. A Hole-mouth Jar from Ain al-Jerba site, decorated with reliefs of two sides of a dancing human figures, with deer masks. ref

    Seated Mother Goddesses when depicted as fat, to me, generally should be thought originally depict the meaning FULL MOON or the lesser association with the sun that mainly limited until Neolithic agriculture the such as seen in the based on the 7 position of the Sun in the sky throughout a solar day like Sun’s “dawn” sun emerging in the morning, (also starting as creator once mother turned to father just as in the connections to the moon’s waxing crescent), then “civil twilight” high noon (full moon), daylight hours or “dusk” starting to get dark or metaphorically die (moon’s waning crescent).

    Therefore, the goddess cults associated with the moon in full are also part of the stages of the sun like a full sun: ie. pregnant/pseudo-pregnant or fertile/life producing maybe a birthing throne also a reference to fertility, thus a Mother Goddess. I could even be that she is in the process of giving birth while seated on her throne, which has two hand rests in the form of feline (leopard or panther) heads. The statuette, one of several iconographically similar ones found at the site, is associated with other corpulent prehistoric goddess figures that are sitting or standing that are fat, of which the most famous is the Venus of Willendorf. When it was found, in a grain-bin; she may have intended to protect the harvest and grain, its head and hand rest of the right side were missing and current head and the hand rest are modern replacements. This is but one of the presumed goddess figures found at Çatal Höyük, north of the Taurus Mountains in a fertile agricultural region of South-Anatolia/Turkey. Many statues found here, which seem to suggest a representation of a generalized Great goddess cult, who headed the pantheon of an essentially equalitarian culture if we are taking our clues from this site of Catal Huyuk “first religious designed city” around 9,500 to 7,700 years ago (Turkey). ref, ref, ref

    This Çatal Höyük seated female figure is a woman, however, I think we need to grasp the ancient mindset that is not the same as traditional notions of gender as we think of them today. We have to open this conception as they likely did back ten allowing for intrinsic variabilities such as a woman could shapeshift or the like into a male or a male turn female or they could simultaneously be a montage of both as well as could become animals or even forces of nature once only seen as spirits. Thus, it is us who understand such things when we assess the gender concepts in ancient goddesses and gods a gender fluidity or belief espouse in various ways to we are only starting to re-acquire not like god gender is not always easily defined and one can hold competing gender natures and as a concept of fluid rather than fixed state of being possible including notions of gender as there is also a large number of sexless figurines. I don’t believe in the goddess believers notions of universal Myth of Matriarchal Prehistory, I don’t claim matriarchy never happened it just was no universal not the norm as it seems there was more a general egalitarianism then patriarchy. According to Heide Göttner-Abendroth, a reluctance to accept the existence of matriarchies might be based on a specific culturally biased notion of how to define matriarchy: because in a patriarchy men rule over women, a matriarchy has frequently been conceptualized as women ruling over men, while she believed that matriarchies are egalitarian. ref, ref

    From my research, though while I do think there were goddess cults and that they are first sharing space I believe with Possible Clan Leader/Special “MALE” Ancestor worship like that seen in Totem Poles At Least 13,500 years ago, also in turkey close to the Gobekli Tepe: “first human-made temple” dated to around 12,000 years ago.

    Possible Clan Leader/Special “MALE” (maybe even a kind of sundial association could connect here as well) ancestor Totem Poles At Göbekli Tepe one only the head and torso accompanied by an erect phallus as well as well as a totem pole that includes what looks like a woman giving birth surrounded by snakes.

    The ‘Urfa Man’  totem pole Idol is not from Göbekli Tepe directly, rather it is somewhat close by. He was found during construction work in the area of the Pre-Pottery Neolithic site at Urfa-Yeni Mahalle / Yeni Yol in Turkey, broken in four nearly equal pieces. Interestingly enough had a small T-shaped pillar, similar to those from Göbekli Tepe’s Layer II.  This speaks for a PPN B date, as does the archaeological material recovered. It is the oldest known statue of a man, slightly larger than life-size. In contrast to the cubic and faceless T-shaped pillars, the ‘Urfa man’ has a face, eyes originally emphasized by segments of black obsidian sunk into deep holes, however, is not depicted. The statue seems to be naked with the exception of a V-shaped necklace. Legs are not depicted; below the body, there is only a conical plug, which allows the statue to be set into the ground. Both hands seem to grab his penis. As no find context has been recorded for the sculpture, it is hard to evaluate its original function. But there are several fragments, especially heads, of similar sculptures from Göbekli Tepe. At this site, statues like the ‘Urfa Man’ seem to have been part of a complex hierarchical system of imagery directly related to the functions of the circular enclosures. You can find a longer text about this here. The presence of a sculpture like the ‘Urfa Man’ and of T-shaped pillars are strong evidence for the presence of a special building inside the settlement at Urfa-Yeni Yol. It may have been comparable to the PPN B ‘cult buildings’ of Nevalı Çori, but this will remain pure speculation. Moreover, there is possible Clan Leader/Special “MALE” Ancestor Totem Poles At Nevali Çori ref

    The 13,500-year-old ‘Urfa Man’  clan totem pole Idol from turkey is similar another one found in Siberia the Shigir Idol is the oldest wooden sculpture around 11,000 years old.

    The Big Shigir totem pole Idol, found near  Yekaterinburg became a key city to Siberia in a peat bog associated with/found near a decorated antler dated to the same period. The sculpture was made from a larch which was at least 157 years old. ‘Clear cuts on the tree trunk leave no doubts that the totem pole Idol was made from a freshly cut tree, by stone tools’ and suggested that the decoration tells the creation myth those who carved it believed in. The totem pole Idol is around the same age as anthropomorphic stone stelae found at the ancient site of Göbekli Tepe in modern-day Turkey and the Shigir totem pole Idol seems somewhat relatable to the similar theme I see in The ‘Urfa Man’ totem pole Idol. ref

    This Çatal Höyük seated female figure is being a women shares a concept of fluid rather than fixed state of being possible including notions of gender as there is also a large number of sexless figurines. ref


    The Goddess and the Bull: Catalhoyuk

    The Goddess and the Bull book details the dramatic quest by archaeologists to unearth the buried secrets of human cultural evolution at this huge, spectacularly well-preserved 9,500-year-old village in Turkey. A site at the origins of modern society — the dawn of art, architecture, religion, family — even the first tangible evidence of human self-awareness, the world’s oldest mirrors. Some archaeologists have claimed that the Mother Goddess was first worshipped at Çatal höyük. The excavations here have yielded the seeds of the Neolithic Revolution, when prehistoric humans first abandoned the hunter-gatherer life they had known for millions of years, invented farming, and began living in houses and communities. ref

    Lion-Throned Goddesses of West Asia

    The Goddess on a Lion Throne is abundantly attested in the archaeology of Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, and Canaan/Israel. First we’ll look at some Phoenician scarabs showing lion thrones, often winged. Then, actual stone thrones from ancient Lebanon, Canaanite ivories with the winged sphinxes, and an alabaster effigy of ‘Ashtart enthroned with winged lionesses. This leads to commentary on some strong biblical parallels. And we’ll look at some late Hellenized forms of the Anatolian Lion-Throned Goddess. ref

    Of the many clay figurines attached to the mother goddess cult behavior is head and shoulders and semi-torso is a peace of a small Neolithic figurines that may have been used for cultist purposes discovered near Beit Hilkia takes the shape of a full-figured woman, according to archaeologists, and is identified with the Neolithic Yarmukian culture that flourished in prehistoric Israel 8,000 years ago. The clay figurine takes the shape of a full-figured woman, according to Haaretz, and is similar to Neolithic figurines found in northern Israel, mostly around the site of Sha‘ar Hagolan (“the Gate to the Golan”). These figurines are attributed to the Yarmukian culture that flourished in northern Israel around 8,000 years ago, during the Pottery Neolithic and this Yarmukian culture was the first in this region to produce pottery. Archaeologists Yosef Garfinkel and Michele Miller describe the human figurines discovered at the Neolithic settlement of Sha‘ar Hagolan in an Archaeology Odysseyarticle:
    The most common—and engaging—human figurines are seated clay figurines with cowrie-like eyes. We have five complete, or nearly complete, examples, along with 70 fragments of various body parts. Each body part was made separately—head, torso, right leg, left leg. The components were assembled to create the basic figurine. Then small details were added: Eyes, ears and nose were put on the head; a veil was placed over the nape of the neck; arms, breasts and clothing were added to the body; fingers and fat folds were created by using different incision techniques; and the navel was depicted by a puncture mark. Remaining patches of paint on the figurines indicate that sometimes the entire figurine was painted red, while at other times only specific parts of the body were painted with red lines. The use of the color red—which is often associated with blood, and thus with life and fecundity—on these figures is intriguing. With one exception, all the anthropomorphic figurines represent women. How were these figurines used? Probably for some cultic function. Were they fertility talismans, made to assure the fruitfulness of flocks and fields? Did they represent some sort of deity to be worshiped, perhaps a mother goddess? Or were they representations of beloved ancestors, used in an ancestor cult? No one knows. What we can say is that they appeal to our modern aesthetic sense. ref

    Early Asherah goddess?

    Could the skeleton of the body be a type of tree of life inside us

    and thus one reason to connect trees, life, and early goddesses?

    This 7,500-year-old goddess figurine from Neve Yam is among the world’s earliest evidence for established religion, the origins of which date back to the agricultural revolution, around 10,000 years ago. It is similar to contemporaneous figurines, especially the one discovered at Hagosherim, some 100 km away. The striking resemblance between the two objects indicates that the cult of the goddess was widespread by this time. In later periods, the combination of a plant motif (the Tree of Life) with the image of a woman (the goddess) became a common image throughout the Ancient Near East, where it represented the goddess Asherah. ref

    The tree of life is a widespread myth or archetype in the world’s mythologies, related to the concept of sacred tree more generally, and hence in religious traditions. The tree of knowledge, connecting to heaven and the underworld, and the tree of life, connecting all forms of creation, are both forms of the world tree or cosmic tree and are portrayed in various religions and philosophies as the same tree. The tree is commonly seen as living in the three realms: roots in the underworld, body of the tree a living skeleton in the earth realm and the tree top and upper leaves in the heaven or sacred sky above. ref

    This is a Neolithic clay amulet, part of the Tărtăria tablets set, dated to around 7,500–7,300 BC and associated with the Turdaş–Vinča culture. The Vinča symbolson it predate the proto-Sumerian pictographic script. Ref

    The Vinča culture that flourished from about 8,000 to 6,000 years ago, was named Vinca-Tordos Culture of Yugoslavia and western Romania and derived its name from the village of Vinca located on the banks of Danube river, only 14 km downstream from Belgrade.

    Another part of the Vinca legacy are curious masks and the most informative costumed figurines depicting women in extremely modern clothes like narrow skirts, and sleeveless upper-body panels, complimented with hip belts, aprons, jewelry, shoes, caps, hairstyles, bracelets, necklaces, and medallions. ref

    Archaeological data show that the Neolithic expansion from Anatolia was not a single event but was represented by several waves of migrants. In this respect the Proto-Sesklo culture in Greece, from which directly Starčevo-Criş in the North Balkans and indirectly LBK in Central Europe originate represents only the first great wave of Neolithisation of Europe. A later great wave of migration from North-West Anatolia led to important cultures of South-Eastern Europe such as Vinča and Boian cultures. Secondly, there is a total absence of aDNA data from South-East Europe in the current models.

    The mtDNA variability from 63 individuals recovered from 10 archaeological sites in Romania spanning a period of five and a half millennia (around 8,300–3,100 years ago) between the Early Neolithic to the Late Bronze Age in Romania. This is a strategic area of South-East Europe, from which different prehistoric human groups have passed and later spread throughout Europe.

    Early Neolithic: Starčevo Criş culture

    The mtDNA variability observed in the samples from Early Neolithic in Romania (E_NEO) (n = 5, Gura Baciului, Negrileşti, and Cârcea sites), showed five haplotypes (haplotype diversity = 0.99±0.0395) that were assorted into four European haplogroups (H, HV, J and T1a) (Table 2). The haplogroup H is the most frequent in the present-day European populations and the haplogroups J and T1 are suggested to be as markers of the Neolithic diffusion from Near East. ref

    The remains of the oldest Neolithic civilization in Europe lies in Vinča, on the right bank of the Danube, not far from downtown Belgrade.

    The largest Neolithic settlement in Europe, dating back more than 7,000 years B.C, considered to have been the center of a civilization that spread across the territory of Bosnia, Serbia, Romania, Bulgaria, Montenegro, Macedonia and Greece. The archaeological site in Vinča revealed different kinds of tools and weapons made of stone and bones, pottery, ritual vases, jewelry, numerous anthropomorphic and zoomorphic figurines, the remains of prehistoric houses and many other objects created here or brought from remote areas. What makes this site so unique is the large number of identical objects indicating that people had had some kind of standardized production in the late Stone Age.

    They woven dresses with V-neck with certain style and design, they had the furniture in houses, and they created beautiful pottery. In addition, they loved to travel. They would travel to the Carpathians in order to get the volcanic glass that was used for weapons, and they brought different objects from far lands and different cultures. That is why the Vinča culture is considered to be one of the most advanced prehistoric cultures.

    Copper caused numerous wars and the disappearance of the Vinča culture. While the people here made fortunes making jewelry and tools out of copper, others used it to make weapons and seize their treasure, as people in Vinča were a peaceful civilization. So the downfall of the Vinča civilization began. ref

    Among unearthed artifacts, there have been found a large number of figurines made of clay and other artifacts depicting worshiped deities and women in miniskirts, short tops, wearing jewelry. It is hard to believe that women that lived several millennia ago wore miniskirts, unless, the cult of Mother Goddess was very widespread and reached both south-east part of Europe and ancient India. Similar, made of ceramic clay, figurines of Mother Goddess, were found in excavations in Mohenjo-Daro, located along the Indus River in ancient India (present-day Pakistan). This would mean that women wore modern cloth at least 7,500 years ago! The Vinca Culture – Europe’s biggest prehistoric civilization – point to a metropolis with a great degree of sophistication and a taste for art and fashion. ref

    Hacilar is an early human settlement in southwestern Turkey. Ceramics from Hacilar show similarities with those of the Halaf culture from about the same period. There are also similarities in their figurines. ref

    The origins of Europe’s first farmers: The role of Hacılar and Western Anatolia. Discoveries in Western Anatolia have shed new light on the origins of Europe’s first farmers. Early Neolithic communities in Greece and the Balkans shared a common ancestry in Western Anatolia at the site of Hacilar from Turkey and this link provides a more complex and accurate picture of the spread of farming to Southeast Europe. There could be three chrono-geographical horizons (two definites, one tentative), each characterized by a different Neolithic ‘package’. Repeated migrations from the Central Anatolian plateau, and further on from the Levant, probably spread farming to Europe in the second half of the after 9,000 years ago. ref

    Vinca culture Sitting Goddesses

    The figurines we found, were often of seeming young women beautifully dressed some in short tops and mini skirts and wore bracelets around their arms. The Vinca culture dating between 7,400 to 6,700 years ago in the 300-acre site at what is now Plocnik knew about trade, handicrafts, art, and metallurgy. The findings suggest an advanced division of labor and organization and the dead were buried in a tidy necropolis. ref

    The First Expression of the Male God around 7,000 years ago one must wonder seeing these figures?
     A First Male expression of a god?

    I think so, and we see a lowering of the goddess that came before, as I believe, he now sits on her old birthing stool of power (sacred throne). To me, this represents the male and female duality and the first possible god sitting on a birthing stool to signify the male on the throne previously reserved only for women. I think the bent arms of both may possibly signify metaphoric “Bull Horns.” Part of the Hamangia culture (Romania and Bulgaria) between the Danube and the Black Sea and Muntenia in the south.

    The Hamangia culture began around 7,250-7,200 years ago and lasted until around 6,550-6,500 years ago It was absorbed by the expanding Boian culture in its transition towards the Gumelnitsa. Its cultural links with Anatolia suggest that it was the result of a settlement by people from Anatolia, unlike the neighboring cultures, which appear descended from an earlier Neolithic settlement. ref

    The Cucuteni–Trypillia culture (Romania: Cultura Cucuteni and Ukraine),

    also known as the Tripolye culture (Russia), around 7,200 to 5,500 years ago in Eastern Europe.

    It extended from Moldova as a center and covering substantial parts of western Ukraine and northeastern Romania. Surprisingly, even the swastika and the Yin and Yang symbols can be found represented on some of the objects, which brings the question of the symbols’ true origin and initial meaning. The roots of Cucuteni–Trypillia culture can be found in the Starčevo–Körös–Criș and Vinča cultures of the 6th to 5th millennia, with additional influence from the Bug–Dniester culture (8,500–7,000 years ago).

    Limited common historical life-time between the Cucuteni–Trypillia (6,800–5,000 years ago) and the Yamna culture (5,300–4,600 years ago); given that the earliest archaeological findings of the Yamna culture are located in the Volga–Don basin, not in the Dniester and Dnieper area where the cultures came in touch, while the Yamna culture came to its full extension in the Pontic steppe at the earliest around 5,000 years ago, the time the Cucuteni–Trypillia culture ended, thus indicating an extremely short survival after coming in contact with the Yamna culture.

    Another contradicting indication is that the kurgans that replaced the traditional horizontal graves in the area now contain human remains of a fairly diversified skeletal type, taller on average than the previous population. Earlier societies of hunter-gatherer tribes had no social stratification, and later societies of the Bronze Age had noticeable social stratification, which saw the creation of occupational specialization, the state and social classes of individuals who were of the elite ruling or religious classes, full-time warriors and wealthy merchants, contrasted with those individuals on the other end of the economic spectrum who were poor, enslaved and hungry.

    In between these two economic models (the hunter-gatherer tribes and Bronze Age civilisations) we find the later Neolithic and Eneolithic societies such as the Cucuteni–Trypillia culture, where the first indications of social stratification began to be found. However, it would be a mistake to overemphasise the impact of social stratification in the Cucuteni–Trypillia culture, since it was still (even in its later phases) very much an egalitarian society. And of course, social stratification was just one of the many aspects of what is regarded as a fully established civilised society, which began to appear in the Bronze Age.

    Like other Neolithic societies, the Cucuteni–Trypillia culture had almost no division of labor. Although this culture’s settlements sometimes grew to become the largest on Earth at the time (up to 15,000 people in the largest), there is no evidence that has been discovered of labour specialisation. Every household probably had members of the extended family who would work in the fields to raise crops, go to the woods to hunt game and bring back firewood, work by the river to bring back clay or fish and all of the other duties that would be needed to survive. refref

    Butmir culture existed in Butmir, near Ilidža, Bosnia and Herzegovina, dating from the Neolithic period. It is characterized by its unique pottery from 7,100–6,500 years ago. It was part of the larger Danube civilization. Certain characteristics of the Butmir pottery designs (e.g. its resemblance with Kamares style Minoan pottery) made some suggest a connection to the Minoan culture on Crete. Of course this was during the same time that some suggested Troy was found in the Neretva river valley, and overwhelming modern opinion is that the Butmir people were a unique culture of their own in the Sarajevo area. The site of Okolište would likely have been an egalitarian society with no evidence of social stratification. Most animal remains found in Okolište belong to cattle. ref

    Siting goddesses of the prehistoric religion of ancient Malta

    Some goddess figurines have been found in western Europe, but the yields have been much richer at sites in Egypt, the Levant, Turkey, Greece, Cyprus, and the Balkans. And some of the earliest elaborate figures come from the islands of Malta.

    In several, images human figures played an important role, these seeming “fat ladies” are associated with the celebration of fertility, both human and agricultural. On one small group of islands, those of Malta, such figures became the object of an infatuation that was closely linked to the construction of the earliest public stone temple buildings in the world and the underground burial chambers related to them contained many images of obese humans–some no larger than a few centimeters, others the size of giants–as well as of animals and phallic symbols, representations of the so-called mother goddesses. Evidence suggests the religion itself encompassed a worship of human fecundity.

    In the Balkans, such figures were kept in houses inside specially constructed niches in the walls. In Turkey, at the site of the 8 millennium B.C.E. settlement Çatal höyük, the finest figurines of clay and stone were associated with the burials of high-status people in special shrines, whereas cruder figurines were found in houses. During this time, agriculture became widely practiced in the Fertile Crescent and Anatolia.

    The discovery of similar figurines at far-flung sites and from disparate eras inspired a long tradition of scholarly speculation about a widespread prehistoric religion based on the worship of the mother goddess. In the middle decades of this century, for example, some archaeologists tried to show that a cult of the Eye Goddess (so-called because of eye motifs on Mesopotamian idols) diffused throughout the entire Mediterranean. More recently, claims have been made that the Balkans were the center of an Old European religion.

    Most modern scholars appreciate that the early cults were radically different in each prehistoric society and that the cults of domestic life were distinct from the cults of death and burial. The example of Malta demonstrates that variation most emphatically. Elsewhere in the Mediterranean, the cults generally involved simple domestic rituals; little effort was invested in religious art or architecture. In Malta, however, the worship of corpulent images gradually blossomed into a consuming passion. That fixation may have been able to take root because conditions there enabled a closed, isolated, introverted society to develop.

    Today the dry, rocky, hilly islands of Malta seem inhospitable to farming communities. Little soil or vegetation is present, and obtaining fresh water is a problem. Yet the geologic evidence suggests that between 5,000 and 7,000 years ago, a far more inviting scene greeted the early inhabitants.

    There may be up to 7,000 individuals that had been buried in the 32 chambers of the hypogeum complex on Malta. They had been interred along with grave gifts of pots, obsidian and flint tools, jewelry consisting of beads and stone pendants, and clay and stone figures of obese people and animals. One of the most striking figures is the Sleeping Lady of the Hypogeum. This statuette shows a rotund female lying on her side on an elaborate woven bed. She is clothed in gathered skirts, and her hair is dressed in a small, neat bun. ref

    Part of the sitting goddess phenomenon, this figurine is of a woman in clay sitting on a stool with an infant in her arms. Sesklo (Thessaly), 6,800-6,500 years ago. This figure depicts a mother and infant just as she prepares to nurse it but also sensitivity and tenderness. ref
    6,500–5,800 years ago in Israel Late Chalcolithic (Copper Age) Period in the Southern Levant Seems to Express Northern Levant Migrations, Cultural and Religious Transfer

    DNA evidence expresses waves of migration from Anatolia and the Zagros mountains (today’s Turkey and Iran) to the Levant helped develop the Chalcolithic culture that existed in Israel’s Upper Galilee region some 6,500 years ago. ref

    “After 10 years of research, we understand that Anatolia/Turkey, especially from the west, is part of the basis of all European peoples. Matching how all European cattle are all descended from Iranian cattle dispersed by farmer herders leaving Anatolia/Turkey.” – Joachim Burger – Anthropologist & Population Geneticist Johannes Gutenberg University, Mainz https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I2vYr6gx56o&t=651s

    The Levant which may refer to Isreal in a common use way generally includes CyprusSyriaIsraelJordanLebanonPalestine and the Northern Sinai Peninsula.

    Movement of people from the Near East 9,000 years ago, especially from Turkey spreading early paganism as it went. By leapfrogging from island to island across the northern Mediterranean, Neolithic people were able to quickly spread their farming lifestyle across southern Europe some 9,000 years ago, genetics suggest. It seems that sometime after individuals in the Near East first developed farming and herding around 12,000 years ago they later transferred it and its new agricultural religion of early paganism out to many others.

    The genetic expresses that people from the Near East migrated into Turkey and then rapidly west through the islands of Greece and Sicily, before making their way north into the center of the continent. People living in central Turkey today, for example, share SNPs with Sicilians and Palestinians, but Sicilians and Palestinians have mutations that the two populations don’t have in common.

    People have common ancestral roots in Turkey but have not had much contact since. People even living around the Mediterranean today have common ancestors in Turkey. But then the genes diverge in two main different sets, with Greek islands like the Dodecanese archipelago and Crete forming a sort of genetic bridge to the rest of Greece, Sicily, Italy, and north into Europe.

    Genetics of modern-day Egyptians, Libyans, Tunisians, and Moroccans form a separate genetic branch, thus, two distinct paths lacking much genetic mingling once separating ways north and south from Turkey. However, there is some evidence, such as found blades in Neolithic settlements in Tunisia made from volcanic glass that comes from isolated islands near Sicily.

    Agriculture and its new Neolithic religion of early paganism, spread across land through central and northern Europe at a rate of about half a mile each year, thus taking millennia to journey from the Balkans to Germany. But the Mediterranean was quite different with these new pagan farmers jumping from island to island, getting from Italy all the way to Portugal in the space of just six generations. ref

    Archaeo-genetic studies have described the formation of Eurasian ‘steppe ancestry’ as a mixture of Eastern and Caucasus hunter-gatherers. The horizon of cultural innovations in the around 6,000 years ago and after that subsequently facilitated the advance of pastoral societies likely linked to the dispersal of Indo-European languages had some odd dispersal, suggesting that the Caucasus acted as a bridge to human movement from Yamnaya and subsequent pastoralist cultures show evidence for previously undetected Anatolian farmer-related ancestry from different contact zones, while Steppe Maykop individuals harbor additional Upper Palaeolithic Siberian and Native American related ancestry. ref

    “Nammu” the oldest solo mother goddess attested in history?

    At least 5,000 to 6,000 years ago or older. In Sumerian mythology, Nammu (also Namma) was a primeval goddess, is also associated with magic, and corresponds to Tiamat in Babylonian mythology.

    Very little is known about Namma, who belongs to the oldest generation of Mesopotamian deities and is associated with the pantheon of Eridu. She is mainly known for her role in the cosmogony of early Mesopotamia and her importance in magic, which is restricted to texts written in Sumerian. According to the god list An-Anum, tablet I line 28, Namma bears the title “mother who gave birth to the heavens and the earth.”

    Nammu was the Goddess sea (Engur) that gave birth to An (heaven) and Ki (earth) and the first gods, representing the Apsu, the fresh water ocean that the Sumerians believed lay beneath the earth, the source of life-giving water and fertility in a country with almost no rainfall. Nammu is not well attested in Sumerian mythology. She may have been of greater importance prehistorically, before Enki took over most of her functions. An indication of her continued relevance may be found in the theophoric name of Ur-Nammu, the founder of the Third Dynasty of Ur. According to the Neo-Sumerian mythological text Enki and Ninmah, Enki is the son of An and Nammu. Nammu is the goddess who “has given birth to the great gods”. It is she who has the idea of creating mankind, and she goes to wake up Enki, who is asleep in the Apsu, so that he may set the process going. The Atrahasis-Epos has it that Enlil requested from Nammu the creation of humans. And Nammu told him that with the help of Enki (her son) she can create humans in the image of and most interestingly, Nammu as the “only female prime mover” in the cosmogonic myths of antiquity.

    Namma is called the “original mother who gave birth to the gods of the universe”, again according her primary status among all the gods and describing her role in Mesopotamian cosmogony. Later on, in particular in Akkadian texts, Namma loses importance and is only rarely mentioned. Aside from the few mentions of Namma in other mythological and literary texts about other gods, no mythology of this ancient goddess has survived the ages. refref

    “The Ghassulian Star,” a mysterious 6,000-year-old mural from Jordan; a Proto-Star of Ishtar, Star of Inanna or Star of Venus?

    Stars: Ancestors, Spirit Animals, and Deities (at least back to around 6,000 years ago)

    Could a Gravettian carving around 25,000 years old relate to Later Goddess and the Bull cults like Catal Huyuk

    Confucianism’s Tiān (Shangdi god 4,000 years old): Supernaturalism, Pantheism or Theism?

    Single God Religions (Monotheism) = “Man-o-theism” started around 4,000 years ago with the Great Sky Spirit/God Tiān (天)?

    I believe they may be, and to me, thus possibly could have some connections to the central Asain deity Tian which may also be related to Tengri.

    Goddesses Ishtar/Inanna were worshipped in Sumer at least as early as the Uruk period (6000 – 5,100 years ago). ref

    “The Ghassulian Star,” a mysterious 6,000-year-old mural from Jordan. “The Ghassulian Star” was made before people could write, back when everyone either hunted and gathered or lived in small farming villages. The figures were painted with black, brown, red, white and yellow natural mineral paints; mud and lime walls were the canvas. The painting features a giant star, animals and masked figures sporting what look a lot like googly eyes. ref

    Ghassulian refers to a culture and an archaeological stage dating to the Middle and Late Chalcolithic Period in the Southern Levant (6,400 – 5,500 years ago). Its type-siteTeleilat Ghassul (Teleilat el-GhassulTulaylat al-Ghassul), is located in the eastern Jordan Valley near the northern edge of the Dead Sea, in modern Jordan.

    The Ghassulian stage was characterized by small hamlet settlements of mixed farming peoples, who had immigrated from the north and settled in the southern Levant – today’s JordanIsrael and Palestine. People of the Beersheba Culture (a Ghassulian subculture) lived in underground dwellings – a unique phenomenon in the archaeological history of the region – or in houses that were trapezoid-shaped and built of mud-brick. Those were often built partially underground (on top of collapsed underground dwellings) and were covered with remarkable polychrome wall paintings. Their pottery was highly elaborate, including footed bowls and horn-shaped drinking goblets, indicating the cultivation of wine.

    Several samples display the use of sculptural decoration or of a reserved slip (a clay and water coating partially wiped away while still wet). The Ghassulians were a Chalcolithic culture as they used stone tools but also smelted copper. Funerary customs show evidence that they buried their dead in stone dolmens and also practiced Secondary burial. Settlements belonging to the Ghassulian culture have been identified at numerous other sites in what is today southern Israel, especially in the region of Beersheba, where elaborate underground dwellings have been excavated. The Ghassulian culture correlates closely with the Amratian of Egypt and also seems to have affinities (e.g., the distinctive churns, or “bird vases”) with early Minoan culture in Crete. ref

    “Between 5,800 – 5,350 years ago, the Ghassulian culture emerged based on an economy specializing in smelting the copper that Sumerian (Uruk) cities imported from the Southern Levant and the Upper Euphrates. The Ghassulians also erected dolmen monuments, similar to megalithic burial structures found not only in Western Europe, but also in the Western Caucasus. An unexpected link with the Uruk dispersions of the Caucasus has been suggested for the Nahal Mishmar “Cave of the Treasure” discovered in the Judean Desert. The fine metalwork discovered in this desert cache includes pieces crafted in a long period 7,000 – 5,500 years ago, as if this cache was buried to protect valuable cultural artifacts (possibly from temple sites) from robbers during the Ubaid-Uruk transition period.

    Adding to the archaeological mystery, the only comparable metalwork from this period has been discovered far away in the Maykop burial north of the Black Sea. Archaeologists have also suggested Ghassulian contacts with the Aegean and Upper Egypt (Amratian culture), suggesting that these East Mediterranean copper smelters played a dynamic role connecting far-flung cultures. Notably, the Ghassulian culture flourished at the time and location some linguists have suggested the Proto-Semitic languages first emerged (approximately 5,750 years ago, probably in the East Mediterranean).5 These later developed to become the Ugaritic, Phoenician, and Hebrew languages spoken not only in Canaan, but also throughout the Mediterranean, Arabian Peninsula, and the Horn of Africa.

    In Europe, this period was less favorable. The “Old European” civilization of the CBMP dissolved between 5,500 – 5,200 years ago, partly regrouping near the Aegean Sea (preserving the foundations for the seagoing Minoan-Mycenaean civilizations), and some adapting to new pastoral lifeways near the Black Sea (such as the Usatovo culture. Despite the centrality of ancient Sumer, early Mesopotamia has rarely been discussed in the context of human genetic structure, and the effects of Sumerian expansions in reshaping the world genetic landscape remain to be discovered. However, the potential of urban centers using new technological toolkits (fueling population growth and giving an early demographic advantage over neighboring Mesolithic societies) suggests that Sumer might have played a formative role in West Eurasian demographic history.

    To help establish a historical foundation for examining the multi-layered genetic structure of the Middle East, this article will outline three phases of Sumerian civilization: (1) Founding of urban settlements during the Ubaid period; (2) Dispersion of Sumerian populations to the Caucasus Mountains and Asia during the Uruk period (including related Kura-Araxes migrations, possibly related to the spread of satem IE languages); and (3) Back-migrations to the Fertile Crescent (in response to events at the periphery of the Sumerian world) during the Middle Bronze Age. Ubaid Period Foundations (8,500 – 5,800 years ago). The foundations of Sumerian civilization were laid during the Ubaid Period (8,500 – 5,800 years ago). In this period, the first Mesopotamian cities were founded, starting with the world’s first capital, Eridu. Probably under the guidance of a priestly bureaucratic elite, these settlements were organized in a tripartite hereditary social structure: integrating farm laborers, nomadic pastoralists (animal herders), and hunting-fishing peoples as urban citizens. This urban culture spread outwards to establish a vast “Ubaid horizon” (2,000 km across) between the Mediterranean Sea and the Persian Gulf. The flow of Ubaid material culture stimulated developments in more distant regions.

    In the Northern Levant, the Ubaid civilization absorbed neighboring Halaf dry farming (non-irrigation) settlements (perhaps Afroasiatic speaking predecessors of the Akkadians and Assyrians). Reaching even further beyond these rivers, Ubaid related (Hassuna-Samarra) pottery types and clay artwork have been found throughout the Aegean, Anatolia, and East Mediterranean. According to the archaeologist Marija Gimbutas, these shared craft forms appeared simultaneously in Southeastern Europe and West Asia around 8,700 – 8,500 years ago. Map of West Eurasian cultures during the Ubaid period. Sumer (the Ubaid heartland) is highlighted in red. Possible language families in neighboring areas are listed in italics. In Europe, this Ubaid related material culture was the basis of what Gimbutas dubbed the “Old European” civilization of the Balkan Peninsula and Central Europe, later splitting into local variant traditions around 7,000 years ago. More recently, Evgeny Chernykh has documented evidence for a large Carpatho-Balkan Metallurgical Province composed of densely settled communities (of up to 15,000 people each) connected by shared copper technology. This network of settlements flourished between 7,500 – 5,500 years ago, before dissolving around 5,200 years ago.

    In the later part of the Ubaid period, another peripheral Copper Age culture emerged in South Asia: the Mehrgarh III or Togau Phase (6,300 – 5,800 years ago) that brought an influx of new collective burial customs, ceramic styles, and copper technology (possibly from West Asia). Other cultural centers that emerged during the Ubaid period included Nabta Playa in Africa, possibly constructed by early populations of the “Green Sahara” (Neolithic Subpluvial; 9,000 – 5,500 years ago), when the landscape of Northern Africa resembled the ecologically rich savannahs of present-day Kenya, and the Badarian and Amratian (Predynastic Upper Egyptian) cultures emerged along the Nile River. Because of their “early adopter” status, these dense Ubaid period settlements in Mesopotamia, Southeastern Europe, and South Asia potentially played a key role in shaping later demographic history.

    The Kurgan Culture and the Indo-Europeanization of Europe considered the Chalcolithic “Old European” civilization pre-IE and suggested that the Proto-Indo-European (IE) languages emerged only later with “Kurgan” culture of the Eurasian steppe. However, this article suggests instead that the Proto-Indo-European language emerged in Ubaid period Southeastern Europe (possibly derived from older West Asian Indo-Hittite languages), later diverging into Eurasian satem and Mediterranean centum IE varieties after the collapse of the CBMP around 5,200 years ago. This would be consistent with linguistic evidence for PIE origins around 6,000 years ago and early contacts with the Uralic (North Eurasian), Caucasian (West Asian), and Afroasiatic (East Mediterranean) languages in West Eurasia. However, it is probable that no modern culture fully represents these ancestral founding populations. Nevertheless, traces of this ancestral population structure might to some extent be preserved in West Asian populations with a tradition of endogamy (such as Assyrian Christians, Druze, etc.). However, ancient DNA would be needed to examine these relationships in more detail.” ref

    Inanna, Queen of Heaven

    Inanna appears in more myths than any other Sumerian deity. Many of her myths involve her taking over the domains of other deities.

    Queen of Heaven was a title given to a number of ancient sky goddesses worshipped throughout the ancient Mediterranean and Near East during ancient times. Goddesses known to have been referred to by the title include Inanna, Anat, Isis, Astarte, and possibly Asherah (by the prophet Jeremiah). In Greco-Roman times Hera, and her Roman aspect Juno bore this title. Forms and content of worship varied. In modern times, the title “Queen of Heaven” is still used by contemporary pagans to refer to the Great Goddess, while Catholics, Orthodox, and some Anglican Christians now apply the ancient title to Mary, the mother of Jesus.

    Inanna-Ishtar’s most famous myth is the story of her descent into and return from Kur, the ancient Sumerian Underworld, a myth in which she attempts to conquer the domain of her older sister Ereshkigal, the queen of the Underworld, but is instead deemed guilty of hubris by the seven judges of the Underworld and struck dead. Three days later, Ninshubur pleads with all the gods to bring Inanna back, but all of them refuse her except Enki, who sends two sexless beings to rescue Inanna.

    Inanna[a] is an ancient Mesopotamian goddess associated with love, beauty, sex, desire, fertility, war, justice, and political power. She was originally worshipped in Sumer and was later worshipped by the Akkadians, Babylonians, and Assyrians under the name Ishtar.[b] She was known as the “Queen of Heaven” and was the patron goddess of the Eanna temple at the city of Uruk, which was her main cult center. She was associated with the planet Venus and her most prominent symbols included the lion and the eight-pointed star. Her husband was the god Dumuzid (later known as Tammuz) and her sukkal, or personal attendant, was the goddess Ninshubur (who later became the male deity Papsukkal).

    Inanna was worshipped in Sumer at least as early as the Uruk period (around 6,000 – 5,100 years ago), but she had little cult prior to the conquest of Sargon of Akkad. During the post-Sargonic era, she became one of the most widely venerated deities in the Sumerian pantheon, with temples across Mesopotamia. The cult of Inanna-Ishtar, which may have been associated with a variety of sexual rites, including homosexual transvestite priests and sacred prostitution, was continued by the East Semitic-speaking people who succeeded the Sumerians in the region. She was especially beloved by the Assyrians, who elevated her to become the highest deity in their pantheon, ranking above their own national god Ashur. Inanna-Ishtar is alluded to in the Hebrew Bible and she greatly influenced the Phoenician goddess Astarte, who later influenced the development of the Greek goddess Aphrodite. ref

    Although the title of Queen of Heaven was often applied to many different goddesses throughout antiquity, Inanna is the one to whom the title is given the most number of times. In fact, Inanna’s name is commonly derived from Nin-anna which literally means “Queen of Heaven” in ancient Sumerian (It comes from the words NIN meaning “lady” and AN meaning “sky”), although the cuneiform sign for her name (Borger 2003 nr. 153, U+12239 ????) is not historically a ligature of the two. In several myths, Inanna is described as being the daughter of Nanna, the ancient Sumerian god of the Moon. In other texts, however, she is often described as being the daughter of either Enki or An. These difficulties have led some early Assyriologists to suggest that Inanna may have been originally a Proto-Euphratean goddess, possibly related to the Hurrian mother goddess Hannahannah, accepted only latterly into the Sumerian pantheon, an idea supported by her youthfulness, and that, unlike the other Sumerian divinities, she at first had no sphere of responsibilities. The view that there was a Proto-Euphratean substrate language in Southern Iraq before Sumerian is not widely accepted by modern Assyriologists. In Sumer Inanna was hailed as “Queen of Heaven” in the third millennium BC. In Akkad to the north, she was worshipped later as Ishtar. In the Sumerian Descent of Inanna, when Inanna is challenged at the outermost gates of the underworld, she replies:

    “I am Inanna, Queen of Heaven, On my way to the East.”

    Her cult was deeply embedded in Mesopotamia and among the Canaanites to the west. F. F. Bruce describes a transformation from a Venus as a male deity to Ishtar, a female goddess by the Akkadians. He links Ishtar, Tammuz, Innini, Ma (Cappadocia), Mami, Dingir-Mah, Cybele, Agdistis, Pessinuntica and the Idaean Mother to the cult of a great Mother-goddess.

    The goddess, the Queen of Heaven, whose worship Jeremiah so vehemently opposed, may have been possibly Astarte. Astarte is the name of a goddess as known from Northwestern Semitic regions, cognate in name, origin and functions with the goddess Ishtar in Mesopotamian texts. Another transliteration is ‘Ashtart; other names for the goddess include Hebrew Ashtoreth), Ugaritic ‘ṯtrt (also ‘Aṯtart or ‘Athtart), Akkadian DAs-tar-tú (also Astartu) and Etruscan Uni-Astre (Pyrgi Tablets). ref

    Female Figure, around 5,500-5,400 years old Terracotta, pigment. Possibly stuck in the ground and shaped to resemble metaphoric bull horns as well as an early sky goddess, such as seen latter of ancient Egypt Nut (goddess) who sometimes is depicted in the form of a cow whose great body formed the sky and heavens. This Nut goddess of the sky of ancient Egyptian religion was seen as a star-covered nude woman arching over the earth or as a cow. The bird-like faces on two of these figurines probably represent human noses, the source of the breath of life. refref

    Hathor was a major goddess in ancient Egyptian religion who played a wide variety of roles.

    As a sky deity, she was the mother or consort of the sky god Horus and the sun god Ra, both of whom were connected with kingship, and thus she was the symbolic mother of their earthly representatives, the pharaohs. She was one of several goddesses who acted as the Eye of Ra, Ra’s feminine counterpart, and in this form, she had a vengeful aspect that protected him from his enemies. Her contrasting, beneficent side represented music, dance, joy, love, sexuality, and maternal care, and she acted as the consort of several male deities and the mother of their sons. These two sides of the goddess exemplified the Egyptian conception of femininity. Hathor also crossed boundaries between worlds, helping deceased souls in the transition to the afterlife. Hathor was often depicted as a cow, symbolizing her maternal and celestial aspects, although her most common form was a woman wearing a headdress of cow horns and a sun disk. She could also be represented as a lioness, cobra, or sycamore tree.

    Cattle goddesses similar to Hathor were portrayed in Egyptian art in the fourth millennium BC, but she herself may not have appeared until the Old Kingdom (c. 2686–2181 BC). With the patronage of Old Kingdom rulers, she became one of Egypt’s most important deities. More temples were dedicated to her than to any other goddess, of which the most prominent was Dendera Temple in Upper Egypt. She was also worshipped in the temples of her male consorts. The Egyptians connected her with foreign lands such as Nubia and Canaan and their valuable goods, such as incense and semiprecious stones, and some of the peoples in those lands adopted her worship. In Egypt itself, she was one of the deities commonly invoked in private prayers and votive offerings, particularly by women desiring children. ref

    This is Isis nursing Horus, from around 2,700 years ago. Isis is treated as the mother of Horus even in the earliest copies of the Pyramid Texts. Isis was also known for her magical power. As a sky goddess, many of the roles Isis acquired gave her an important position in the sky. Passages in the Pyramid Texts connect Isis closely with Sopdet, the goddess representing the star Sirius, whose relationship with her husband Sah—the constellation Orion.

    Seeming evidence of a Universal goddess

    In Ptolemaic times Isis’s sphere of influence could include the entire cosmos. As the deity that protected Egypt and endorsed its king, she had power over all nations, and as the provider of rain, she enlivened the natural world. The Philae hymn that initially calls her ruler of the sky goes on to expand her authority, so at its climax her dominion encompasses the sky, earth, and Duat. It says her power over nature nourishes humans, the blessed dead, and the gods. Other, Greek-language hymns from Ptolemaic Egypt call her “the beautiful essence of all the gods”. In the course of Egyptian history, many deities, major and minor, had been described in similar grand terms. Amun was most commonly described this way in the New Kingdom, whereas in Roman Egypt such terms tended to be applied to Isis. Such texts do not deny the existence of other gods but treat them as aspects of the supreme deity, a type of theology sometimes called “summodeism”. ref

    Sumerian Venus figures 4,300-3,800 years ago, from Mesopotamia

    The first figurine has Inanna seated upon her throne. She was the goddess who granted kingship. The other figure is from Ur. These would be representations of Inanna who was a very popular goddess. The hands on the breasts are a dead give away for the Venus figure. It is one of the indicators that a statue is the Great Goddess of Mother Earth. This posture became a standard form across many cultures from as early as the Venus of Lespugue. ref

    Ancient Cypriot art refers to all works of visual art originating from Cyprus beginning around 12,000 years ago, seasonal hunters of pygmy hippopotami and elephants were present on the island. The first Neolithic settlers in Cyprus originated from either the Syro-Palestinian coast or southern Anatolia, forming communities founded on agriculture. It was towards the end of the Neolithic period when people began to bake molded clay into vessels which were frequently embellished with abstract designs in red on a light slip.

    During this period, a new flood of Syro-Palestinian and Anatolian migrants introduced a more advanced culture where religion was practiced and art processes became more complex. Examples of such art are that of female figurines formed from clay or stone which represented fertility as one of the crucial values of agrarian society at the time. Middle Bronze Age 3,900 – 3,650 years ago contacts with Egypt, the Near East, Minoan Crete, and Mycenaean Greece. Despite the continuation of agriculture, certain developments such as diversified burial procedures, the building of unique religious installations, and the use of seals indicate a more sophisticated and organized society. refref

    The Cypro-Minoan script was in regular use on the island of Cyprus, and by Cypriot merchants overseas, during the Late Bronze Age. Although still undeciphered, sign-sequences inscribed on miniature copper ‘oxhide’ ingots and on associated clay labels may hold a clue to their purpose. The ingots were previously interpreted as votive offerings inscribed with dedications. Here, it is suggested instead that these extremely pure copper miniatures were produced as commercial samples, and were marked with a brand denoting their high quality and provenance, such as ‘pure Cypriot copper’. ref

    A 3,450-3,050 YEARS OLD

    CYPRIOT TERRACOTTA FEMALE FIGURE

    From the Cypriot culture from Cyprus, With bird-like face, the ears each pierced twice, one hoop earring preserved, pierced holes on thigh, stomach and upper chest area, the large pubic area hatched, incised lines around waist and neck.

    Syria/Turkey peoples came to Cyprus about 4,400 years ago identified by the distinct Philia Culture found in most parts of the island. This figurine is typical likely of Syrian/Turkish origin, but Cypriot sculptors created their own variations.

    Ringed Ear. In a striking Dumbo-like appearance the oversized ear was pierced for housing large ceramic earrings. The face was pinched in the Syro-Halaf style called by some bird-like. This style circles around the Black and Caspian Seas like one large loop. Possibly these goddesses had their ears pierced as a form of ritual or sacrifice which was a huge part of a religious culture at this time.

    Some of these figurines have smaller holes than the Cyprus and Syrian idols. Sometimes there are many perforations. These holes seem to suggest a symbolism not yet understood and may in some cases be a stand-alone feature as they are too small for a ceramic ring. It is not uncommon to see a small puncture at the sides of the hip, at the breast area or in other locations about the body (see map above: Syrian figurine). In the end, it could be simply be decorative as in the practice of indicating textiles by scribing lines but I think there is more to it but what that could be is a mystery. refrefref

    Historically, the Jewish religion had elements of polytheism,

    especially the worship of goddesses and a cult of the mother goddess.

    Asherah is identified as the queen consort of the Sumerian god Anu, and Ugaritic El, the oldest deities of their respective pantheons, as well as Yahweh, the god of Israel and Judah. This role gave her a similarly high rank in the Ugaritic pantheon. Despite her association with Yahweh in extra-biblical sources, Deuteronomy 12 has Yahweh commanding the destruction of her shrines so as to maintain purity of his worship. The name Dione, which like ‘Elat means “Goddess”, is clearly associated with Asherah in the Phoenician History of Sanchuniathon, because the same common epithet (‘Elat) of “the Goddess par excellence” was used to describe her at Ugarit. The Book of Jeremiah, written circa 628 BC, possibly refers to Asherah when it uses the title “Queen of Heaven”[b] in Jeremiah 7:16-18[7] and Jeremiah 44:17-19, 25.

    Asherah in ancient Semitic religion, is a mother goddess who appears in a number of ancient sources. She appears in Akkadian writings by the name of Ašratu(m), and in Hittite as Aserdu(s) or Asertu(s). Asherah is generally considered identical with the Ugaritic goddess ʼAṯirat.

    She is also called Elat,[e] “Goddess”, the feminine form of El (compare Allat) and Qodesh, “holiness”.[f] Athirat in Akkadian texts appears as Ashratum (or, Antu), the wife of Anu, the God of Heaven. In contrast, ʿAshtart is believed to be linked to the Mesopotamian goddess Ishtar who is sometimes portrayed as the daughter of Anu while in Ugaritic myth, ʿAshtart is one of the daughters of El, the West Semitic counterpart of Anu.

    Among the Hittites this goddess appears as Asherdu(s) or Asertu(s), the consort of Elkunirsa (“El the Creator of Earth”) and mother of either 77 or 88 sons. Among the Amarna letters a King of the Amorites is named Abdi-Ashirta, “Servant of Asherah”. ref

    The damaged rock-statue of “Mother of the Gods”, known as goddess Cybele relief.

    Probably dating into Hittite empire dating in the time of king Šuppiluliuma I or his son Muršili II, 3,400 years ago.

    The rock relief of Manisa, also rock relief of Akpınar, Turkish Taş Suret (rock image ) or Sipil Heykeli (Sipylos Monument), known as Cybele relief, located in the suburb Akpınar about 5 km east of the Turkish provincial capital Manisa above a theme park on the road Salihli. It represents a Hittite deity figure.

    Cybele has components of various mother goddesses in ancient Greece: Gaia, Rhea, and Demeter, each notable in their own aspects. Gaia is the ancient Greek mother goddess, responsible for birthing the gods and various aspects of the cosmos with Uranus. Rhea plays a similar role in the universe as the mother of the Olympians with ancient roots in Minoan and Mycenaean traditions. And Demeter is the mother goddess among the Olympians who is directly responsible for the changing of the seasons and thus the fertility of the earth.

    Her consort is the Phrygian shepherd called Attis, and their relationship was recognized in ancient Greece and Rome, though there are likely Phrygian roots to his character as well. Attis is believed to be her younger mate, often considered to be a deity himself, though beneath the goddess. It is highly debated whether Attis arrived with Cybele or after her, tacked on by the later Greek and Roman followers.

    Cybele (/ˈsɪbɪli/; Phrygian: Matar Kubileya/Kubeleya “Kubileya/Kubeleya Mother”, perhaps “Mountain Mother”; Lydian Kuvava; Greek: Κυβέλη Kybele, Κυβήβη Kybebe, Κύβελις Kybelis) is an Anatolian mother goddess; she may have a possible precursor in the earliest Neolithic at Çatal Höyük, where statues of plump women, sometimes sitting, have been found in excavations. She is Phrygia’s only known goddess, and was probably its state deity. Her Phrygian cult was adopted and adapted by Greek colonists of Asia Minor and spread to mainland Greece and its more distant western colonies around the 2,600 years ago.

    In Greece, Cybele met with a mixed reception. She was partially assimilated to aspects of the Earth-goddess Gaia, her Minoan equivalent Rhea, and the harvest–mother goddess Demeter. Some city-states, notably Athens, evoked her as a protector, but her most celebrated Greek rites and processions show her as an essentially foreign, exotic mystery-goddess who arrives in a lion-drawn chariot to the accompaniment of wild music, wine, and a disorderly, ecstatic following. Uniquely in Greek religion, she had a eunuch mendicant priesthood. Many of her Greek cults included rites to a divine Phrygian castrate shepherd-consort Attis, who was probably a Greek invention. In Greece, Cybele is associated with mountains, town and city walls, fertile nature, and wild animals, especially lions.

    In Rome, Cybele was known as Magna Mater (“Great Mother”). The Roman state adopted and developed a particular form of her cult after the Sibylline oracle recommended her conscription as a key religious ally in Rome’s second war against Carthage. Roman mythographers reinvented her as a Trojan goddess, and thus an ancestral goddess of the Roman people by way of the Trojan prince Aeneas. With Rome’s eventual hegemony over the Mediterranean world, Romanized forms of Cybele’s cults spread throughout the Roman Empire. The meaning and morality of her cults and priesthoods were topics of debate and dispute in Greek and Roman literature, and remain so in modern scholarship. ref, ref, ref

    The earliest swastika (which, to me, generally connects to sun expression “Day Star” or life and birth) ever found was uncovered in Mezine, Ukraine, carved on an ivory figurine, which dates an incredible 12,000 years, and one of the earliest cultures that are known to have used the Swastika was a Neolithic culture in Southern Europe, in the area that is now Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, known as the Vinca Culture, which dates back around 8,000 years. In Nordic Myths , Odin is represented passing through space as a whirling disk or swastika looking down through all worlds. In North America, the swastika was used by the Navajos. It has been used by the Phoenicians as a symbol of the Sun and it was a sacred symbol used by the priestesses. Hinduism, the right-hand swastika is a symbol of the God Vishnu and the Sun, while the left-hand swastika is a symbol of Kali and Magic. The double meaning of symbols is common in ancient traditions, like for example the symbol of the pentagram (five-pointed star), which is viewed as negative when pointing downwards, and positive when pointing upwards. ref

    In Bronze Age Europe, the “Sun cross” appears most frequently of all continents, often interpreted as a solar symbol. Swastika shapes have been found on numerous artifacts from Iron Age Europe (Greco-Roman, Illyrian, Etruscan, Baltic, Celtic, Germanic, Slavic, and Georgian Borjgali). This prehistoric use seems to be reflected in the appearance of the symbol in various folk cultures of Europe. The symbol has been found on vessels in the ancient city of Troy, The evidence shows that it served as a symbol of fertility and life. Its similar use can be found in Trench Graves in Mycanae, Greece, on Athenian vases and even decorating the garments of Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love. Also, the Greek Parthenon had this symbol as a Greek design just like other designs. The swastika is a definite European sign moving east into Indus Valley Civilization. It was brought by migrating tribes to India where it is revered in the religious and cultural life of the Indo-Aryans. It did not originate in the Indus Valley Civilization as some people thought. ref

    The bronze inscriptions are one of the earliest scripts in the Chinese family of scripts, preceded by the oracle bone script. Like the early period oracle bone script, the structures and orientations of individual graphs varied greatly in the Shang bronze inscriptions. ref, ref

    Damien Marie AtHope’s Art

    refrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefref

    Single God Religions (Monotheism) = “Man-o-theism”

    started around 4,000 years ago with the Great Sky Spirit/God Tiān (天)?

    Tiān () is one of the oldest Chinese terms for heaven and a key concept in Chinese mythologyphilosophy, and religion.

    During the Shang Dynasty (17–11th centuries BCE), the Chinese referred to their supreme god as Shàngdì (上帝, “Lord on High”) or  (,”Lord”). During the following Zhou DynastyTiān became synonymous with this figure. Heaven worship was, before the 20th century, an orthodox state religion of China.

    In Taoism and ConfucianismTiān (the celestial aspect of the cosmos, often translated as “Heaven“) is mentioned in relationship to its complementary aspect of  (, often translated as “Earth“). These two aspects of Daoist cosmology are representative of the dualisticnature of Taoism. They are thought to maintain the two poles of the Three Realms (三界) of reality, with the middle realm occupied by Humanity (Rén), and the lower world occupied by demons () and ghosts (Guǐ).

    The first – Shàng – means “high”, “highest”, “first”, “primordial”; the second –  – is typically considered as a short hand for huangdi (皇帝)in modern Chinese, the title of the emperors of China first employed by Qin Shi Huang, and is usually translated as “emperor”. The word itself is derived from Three “Huang” and Five “Di”, including Yellow Emperor (Huangdi 黃帝), the mythological originator of the Chinese civilization and the ancestor of the Chinese race. However, 帝 refers to the High God of Shang, thus means “deity” (manifested god). Thus, the name Shangdi should be translated as “Highest Deity”, but also have the implied meaning of “Primordial Deity” or “First Deity” in Classical Chinese.

    The deity preceded the title and the emperors of China were named after him in their role as Tianzi, the sons of Heaven. In the classical texts, the highest conception of the heavens is frequently identified with Shang Di, who is described somewhat anthropomorphically. He is also associated with the pole star. The conceptions of the Supreme Ruler (Shang Di) and of the Sublime Heavens (Huang-t’ien)afterward coalesce or absorb each other.

    The earliest references to Shangdi are found in oracle bone inscriptions of the Shang Dynasty in the around 4,000 years ago, although the later work Classic of History claims yearly sacrifices were made to him by Emperor Shun, even before the Xia Dynasty. “Shang Di” is the pinyin romanization of two Chinese characters that in modern Chinese, the title of the emperors of China first employed by Qin Shi Huang, and is usually translated as “emperor”, the mythological originator of the Chinese civilization and the ancestor of the Chinese race. However, 帝 refers to the High God of Shang, thus means “deity” (manifested god). Thus, the name Shangdi should be translated as “Highest Deity”, but also have the implied meaning of “Primordial Deity” or “First Deity” in Classical Chinese. In the classical texts, the highest conception of the heavens is frequently identified with Shang Di, who is described somewhat anthropomorphically. He is also associated with the pole star. The conceptions of the Supreme Ruler (Shang Di) and of the Sublime Heavens (Huang-t’ien)afterward coalesce or absorb each other.

    Under Shangdi or his later names, the deity received sacrifices from the ruler of China in every Chinese dynasty annually at a great Temple of Heaven in the imperial capital. Following the principles of Chinese geomancy, this would always be located in the southern quarter of the city. During the ritual, a completely healthy bull would be slaughtered and presented as an animal sacrifice to Shangdi. It is important to note that Shangdi is never represented with either images or idols.

    Instead, in the center building of the Temple of Heaven, in a structure called the “Imperial Vault of Heaven”, a “spirit tablet” (神位, shénwèi) inscribed with the name of Shangdi is stored on the throne, Huangtian Shangdi (皇天上帝). During an annual sacrifice, the emperor would carry these tablets to the north part of the Temple of Heaven, a place called the “Prayer Hall For Good Harvests”, and place them on that throne. It was during Ming and Qing dynasty, when Roman Catholicism was introduced by Jesuit Priest Matteo Ricci, that the idea of “Shangdi” started to be applied to the Christian conception of God.

    While initially, he utilized the term Tianzhu, Ricci gradually changed the translation into “Shangdi” instead. His usage of Shangdi was contested by Confucians, as they believed that the concept of Tian and “Shangdi” is different from that of Christian’s God: Zhōng Shǐ-shēng, through his books, stated that Shangdi only governs, while Christian’s God is a creator, and thus differ. Ricci’s translation also invited the displeasure of Dominicans and that of the Roman Curia; On March 19, 1715, Pope Clement XI released the Edict Ex Illa Die, stating that Catholics must use “Tianzhu” instead of “Shangdi” for Christianity’s God. refrefref

    Humans seem to have a need to mythicized?
     
    It is interesting how many people act like there is only one god myth in the world. They must not realize the concept is more varied then races or types of people on the earth. Throughout history and prehistory, humans have ascribed various powers to supernatural beings. Such creatures include the immortal gods and goddesses. Humans seem to have a need to mythicized the world around them as such have worshiped over 3,700 Supreme Beings. Some are given credit for the creation of the world and mankind, or food, warfare, love, and all the other good and bad elements of life. Yet even mythicizing believers can be pretty sure most of these were simply invented. However, such believers are generally sure that their specific cozen mythicizing god and religion is real whilst the gods or religions others believe in are false. What evidence do they have for this belief? Once it is challenged mythicizing believers have no evidence to offer either. Though it seem not to faze them at all that they too have just as evidenceless and reality contrary a faith in their immortal gods, goddesses or supernatural beings as real then that their fellow yet different cozen mythicizing believers whom they see god and religion are false. So why do they believe this need to mythicized with such passion and such blind abandon? Possibly the inculcation of mythicizing belief is a function of familial or culture capital—not of evidence. We can all see that religions follow families and the communities they live in because they not only purpose such beliefs they normalize them and require them to mythicized. Inculcation: to fix something firmly in somebody’s mind through frequent, forceful repetition. For more on different goddesses or gods check out: http://www.godchecker.com/

    8,600-year-old Tortoise Shells in Neolithic graves in central China

    have Early Writing and Shamanism

    Tortoise shells were found in 24 Neolithic graves excavated at Jiahu, Henan province, northern China, dating to around 8,600 years ago. According to some archaeologists, the symbols carved on the shells had similarities to around 3,250 or 3,200 years old oracle bone script, which was the form of Chinese characters used on oracle bones—animal bones or turtle plastrons used in pyromantic divination. refref

    In ancient Mesopotamia, the turtle was associated with the god Enki and was used on kudurrus as one of Enki’s symbols. In the myth of Ninurta and the Turtle, Enki thwarts an attempt by the god Ninurta to seize absolute power by creating a giant turtle and releasing it behind Ninurta, so it bites the hero’s ankle. As they struggle, the turtle digs a pit with its claws, which both of them fall into and Enki gloats over Ninurta’s defeat. Therefore, the ideas of the heron and the turtle connect to an ancient Sumerian story. ref

    Shaman burial in Israel 12,000 years ago and the Shamanism Phenomena

    12,000-Year-Old Shaman’s Elaborate Funeral Had 6 StagesA diminutive woman buried in a cave in Israel 12,000 years ago was likely a person of importance and was interred with great ceremony, including a feast of 86 tortoises, archaeological evidence suggests. The cave served as a burial ground for at least 28 people during the latter part of the Natufian period (15,000 – 11,500 B.C.). And one grave stood out, separated from other graves by a stone divider, and with the body and objects around it arranged with particular care and intent. The skeleton of a woman about 4 feet 9 inches (1.5 meters) tall and about 45 years old had been carefully placed in a grave pit layered with sediment, seashells, tortoise shells, chalk and bony horn cores from gazelles. Arranged around and upon her body were bones representing a number of animals: marten skulls, a wild cow tail, a boar’s forearm, a leopard’s pelvis, an eagle’s wing and a human foot. For stage five, attendants filled the grave with garbage from the funeral feast, according to the researchers. And finally, for stage six, a large triangular block of limestone was positioned at the top of the grave. In a statement, Grosman described the occupant of the grave as “probably a shaman,” based on the variety of animal bones surrounding her, because shamans of the time were believed to commune with animal spirits. ref

    Religious beliefs often don’t stay in the “belief” category, as if it is something chosen temporarily if needed or changeable if required. No, what is most common is that religious beliefs are completely infused to the person’s identity, thus it’s not what they believe it is more a factor of who they are. What this means is if they are later challenged and given reason to let the belief go this is largely disrupted because they and the belief are mixed with the person’s identity making its loss, not just a possible belief loss but a perceived personal identity loss. Faith is being inspired to strong belief in that which, by the lack of proof, should inspire strong doubt. Faith is the self-indoctrination process of coming to believe in unjustified belief.

    The turbulent seas of denial are ever crashing like a tsunami of avoidance on religion’s shores. With minds of cognitive decadence and intellectual dishonesty, they welcome this eroding of the religion-believers perceived need to change belief in the face of facts when they want to keep belief regardless. Thus, they joyfully dive in swimming deep under denials dark waters to the safety of blind ignorance.


    Religions continuing in our modern world, full of science and facts, should be seen as little more than a set of irrational conspiracy theories of reality. Nothing more than a confused reality made up of unscientific echoes from man’s ancient past. Rational thinkers must ask themselves why continue to believe in religions’ stories. Religion myths which are nothing more than childlike stories and obsolete tales once used to explain how the world works, acting like magic was needed when it was always only nature.


    These childlike religious stories should not even be taken seriously, but sadly too often they are. Often without realizing it, we accumulate beliefs that we allow to negatively influence our lives. In order to bring about awareness, we need to be willing to alter skewed beliefs. Rational thinkers must examine the facts instead of blindly following beliefs or faith.



    Pre-Animism (at least 300,000 years ago)

    Around a million years ago, I surmise that Pre-Animism, “animistic superstitionism”, began, Around 400,000 Years ago shows Sociocultural Evolution, and then led to the animistic somethingism or animistic supernaturalism, which is at least 300,000 years old and about 100,00 years ago, it evolves to a representation of general Animism, which is present in today’s religions. There is also Homo Naledi and an Intentional Cemetery “Pre-Animism” dating to around 250,000 years ago. And, Neanderthals “Primal Religion (Pre-Animism/Animism?)” Mystery Cave Rings 175,000 Years Ago. Neanderthals were the first humans to intentionally bury the dead, around 130,000 years ago at sites such as Krapina in Croatia.

    Pre-animism ideas can be seen in rock art such as that expressed in portable anthropomorphic art, which may be related to some kind of ancestor veneration. This magical thinking may stem from a social or non-religious function of ancestor veneration, which cultivates kinship values such as filial piety, family loyalty, and continuity of the family lineage. Ancestor veneration occurs in societies with every degree of social, political, and technological complexity and it remains an important component of various religious practices in modern times.

    Humans are not the only species, which bury their dead. The practice has been observed in chimpanzees, elephants, and possibly dogs. Intentional burial, particularly with grave goods, signify a “concern for the dead” and Neanderthals were the first human species to practice burial behavior and intentionally bury their dead, doing so in shallow graves along with stone tools and animal bones. Exemplary sites include Shanidar in Iraq, Kebara Cave in Israel and Krapina in Croatia. The earliest undisputed human burial dates back 100,000 years ago with remains stained with red ochre, which show ritual intentionality similar to the Neanderthals before them. refref


    Animism (such as that seen in Africa: 100,000 years ago)

    Did Neanderthals teach us “Primal Religion (Pre-Animism/Animism?)” 120,000 Years Ago? Homo sapiens – is known to have reached the Levant between 120,000 and 90,000 years ago, but that exit from Africa evidently went extinct. 100,000 years ago, in Qafzeh, Israel, the oldest intentional burial had 15 African individuals covered in red ocher was from a group who visited and returned back to Africa. 100,000 to 74,000 years ago, at Border Cave in Africa, an intentional burial of an infant with red ochre and a shell ornament, which may have possible connections to the Africans buried in Qafzeh.

    Animism is approximately a 100,000-year-old belief system and believe in spirit-filled life and/or afterlife. If you believe like this, regardless of your faith, you are a hidden animist.

    The following is evidence of Animism: 100,000 years ago, in Qafzeh, Israel, the oldest intentional burial had 15 African individuals covered in red ocher was from a group who visited and returned back to Africa. 100,000 to 74,000 years ago, at Border Cave in Africa, an intentional burial of an infant with red ochre and a shell ornament, which may have possible connections to the Africans buried in Qafzeh, Israel. 120,000 years ago, did Neanderthals teach us Primal Religion (Pre-Animism/Animism) as they too used red ocher and burials? refref

    It seems to me, it may be the Neanderthals who may have transmitted a “Primal Religion (Animism)” or at least burial and thoughts of an afterlife. The Neanderthals seem to express what could be perceived as a Primal “type of” Religion, which could have come first and is supported in how 250,000 years ago, the Neanderthals used red ochre and 230,000 years ago shows evidence of Neanderthal burial with grave goods and possibly a belief in the afterlife. ref

    Do you think it is crazy that the Neanderthals may have transmitted a “Primal Religion”? Consider this, it appears that 175,000 years ago, the Neanderthals built mysterious underground circles with broken off stalactites. This evidence suggests that the Neanderthals were the first humans to intentionally bury the dead, doing so in shallow graves along with stone tools and animal bones. Exemplary sites include Shanidar in Iraq, Kebara Cave in Israel and Krapina in Croatia. Other evidence may suggest the  Neanderthals had it transmitted to them by Homo heidelbergensis, 350,000 years ago, by their earliest burial in a shaft pit grave in a cave that had a pink stone axe on the top of 27 Homo heidelbergensis individuals and 250,000 years ago, Homo naledi had an intentional cemetery in South Africa cave.  refrefrefrefref


    Totemism (Europe: 50,000 years ago)

    Did Neanderthals Help Inspire Totemism? Because there is Art Dating to Around 65,000 Years Ago in Spain? Totemism as seen in Europe: 50,000 years ago, mainly the Aurignacian culture. Pre-Aurignacian “Châtelperronian” (Western Europe, mainly Spain and France, possible transitional/cultural diffusion between Neanderthals and Humans around 50,000-40,000 years ago). Archaic–Aurignacian/Proto-Aurignacian Humans (Europe around 46,000-35,000). And Aurignacian “classical/early to late” Humans (Europe and other areas around 38,000 – 26,000 years ago).

    Totemism is approximately a 50,000-year-old belief system and believe in spirit-filled life and/or afterlife that can be attached to or be expressed in things or objects. If you believe like this, regardless of your faith, you are a hidden totemist.

    Toetmism may be older as there is evidence of what looks like a Stone Snake in South Africa, which may be the “first human worship” dating to around 70,000 years ago. Many archaeologists propose that societies from 70,000 to 50,000 years ago such as that of the Neanderthals may also have practiced the earliest form of totemism or animal worship in addition to their presumably religious burial of the dead. Did Neanderthals help inspire Totemism? There is Neanderthals art dating to around 65,000 years ago in Spain. refref


    Shamanism (beginning around 30,000 years ago)

    Shamanism (such as that seen in Siberia Gravettian culture: 30,000 years ago). Gravettian culture (34,000–24,000 years ago; Western Gravettian, mainly France, Spain, and Britain, as well as Eastern Gravettian in Central Europe and Russia. The eastern Gravettians, which include the Pavlovian culture). And, the Pavlovian culture (31,000 – 25,000 years ago such as in Austria and Poland). 31,000 – 20,000 years ago Oldest Shaman was Female, Buried with the Oldest Portrait Carving.

    Shamanism is approximately a 30,000-year-old belief system and believe in spirit-filled life and/or afterlife that can be attached to or be expressed in things or objects and these objects can be used by special persons or in special rituals that can connect to spirit-filled life and/or afterlife. If you believe like this, regardless of your faith, you are a hidden shamanist.

    Around 29,000 to 25,000 years ago in Dolní Vestonice, Czech Republic, the oldest human face representation is a carved ivory female head that was found nearby a female burial and belong to the Pavlovian culture, a variant of the Gravettian culture. The left side of the figure’s face was a distorted image and is believed to be a portrait of an elder female, who was around 40 years old. She was ritualistically placed beneath a pair of mammoth scapulae, one leaning against the other. Surprisingly, the left side of the skull was disfigured in the same manner as the aforementioned carved ivory figure, indicating that the figure was an intentional depiction of this specific individual. The bones and the earth surrounding the body contained traces of red ocher, a flint spearhead had been placed near the skull, and one hand holding the body of a fox. This evidence suggests that this was the burial site of a shaman. This is the oldest site not only of ceramic figurines and artistic portraiture but also of evidence of early female shamans. Before 5,500 years ago, women were much more prominent in religion.

    Archaeologists usually describe two regional variants: the western Gravettian, known namely from cave sites in France, Spain, and Britain, and the eastern Gravettian in Central Europe and Russia. The eastern Gravettians include the Pavlovian culture, which were specialized mammoth hunters and whose remains are usually found not in caves but in open air sites. The origins of the Gravettian people are not clear, they seem to appear simultaneously all over Europe. Though they carried distinct genetic signatures, the Gravettians and Aurignacians before them were descended from the same ancient founder population. According to genetic data, 37,000 years ago, all Europeans can be traced back to a single ‘founding population’ that made it through the last ice age. Furthermore, the so-called founding fathers were part of the Aurignacian culture, which was displaced by another group of early humans members of the Gravettian culture. Between 37,000 years ago and 14,000 years ago, different groups of Europeans were descended from a single founder population. To a greater extent than their Aurignacian predecessors, they are known for their Venus figurines. refrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefref, & ref


    Paganism (beginning around 12,000 years ago)

    Paganism (such as that seen in Turkey: 12,000 years ago). Gobekli Tepe: “first human-made temple” around 12,000 years ago. Sedentism and the Creation of goddesses around 12,000 years ago as well as male gods after 7,000 years ago. Pagan-Shaman burial in Israel 12,000 years ago and 12,000 – 10,000 years old Paganistic-Shamanistic Art in a Remote Cave in Egypt. Skull Cult around 11,500 to 8,400 Years Ago and Catal Huyuk “first religious designed city” around 10,000 years ago.

    Paganism is approximately a 12,000-year-old belief system and believe in spirit-filled life and/or afterlife that can be attached to or be expressed in things or objects and these objects can be used by special persons or in special rituals that can connect to spirit-filled life and/or afterlife and who are guided/supported by a goddess/god, goddesses/gods, magical beings, or supreme spirits. If you believe like this, regardless of your faith, you are a hidden paganist.



    Around 12,000 years ago, in Turkey, the first evidence of paganism is Gobekli Tepe: “first human-made temple” and around 9,500 years ago, in Turkey, the second evidence of paganism is Catal Huyuk “first religious designed city”. In addition, early paganism is connected to Proto-Indo-European language and religion. Proto-Indo-European religion can be reconstructed with confidence that the gods and goddesses, myths, festivals, and form of rituals with invocations, prayers, and songs of praise make up the spoken element of religion. Much of this activity is connected to the natural and agricultural year or at least those are the easiest elements to reconstruct because nature does not change and because farmers are the most conservative members of society and are best able to keep the old ways.

    The reconstruction of goddesses/gods characteristics may be different than what we think of and only evolved later to the characteristics we know of today. One such characteristic is how a deity’s gender may not be fixed, since they are often deified forces of nature, which tend to not have genders. There are at least 40 deities and the Goddesses that have been reconstructed are: *Pria*Pleto*Devi*Perkunos*Aeusos, and *Yama.

    The reconstruction of myths can be connected to Proto-Indo-European culture/language and by additional research, many of these myths have since been confirmed including some areas that were not accessible to the early writers such as Latvian folk songs and Hittite hieroglyphic tablets. There are at least 28 myths and one of the most widely recognized myths of the Indo-Europeans is the myth, “Yama is killed by his brother Manu” and “the world is made from his body”. Some of the forms of this myth in various Indo-European languages are about the Creation Myth of the Indo-Europeans.

    The reconstruction of rituals can be connected to Proto-Indo-European culture/language and is estimated to have been spoken as a single language from around 6,500 years ago. One of the earliest ritual is the construction of kurgans or mound graves as a part of a death ritual. kurgans were inspired by common ritual-mythological ideas. Kurgans are complex structures with internal chambers. Within the burial chamber at the heart of the kurgan, elite individuals were buried with grave goods and sacrificial offerings, sometimes including horses and chariots.

    The speakers of Pre-Proto-Indo-European lived in Turkey and it associates the distribution of historical Indo-European languages with the expansion around 9,000 years ago, with a proposed homeland of Proto-Indo-European proper in the Balkans around 7,000 years ago. The Proto-Indo-European Religion seemingly stretches at least back around 6,000 years ago or likely much further back and I believe Paganism is possibly an approximately 12,000-year-old belief system.

    The earliest kurgans date to 6,000 years ago and are connected to the Proto-Indo-European in the Caucasus. In fact, around 7,000 years ago, there appears to be pre-kurgan in Siberia. Around 7,000 to 2,500 years ago and beyond, kurgans were built with ancient traditions still active in Southern Siberia and Central Asia, which display the continuity of the archaic forming methods. Kurgan cultures are divided archaeologically into different sub-cultures such as Timber GravePit GraveScythianSarmatianHunnish, and KumanKipchak. Kurgans have been found from the Altay Mountains to the Caucasus, Ukraine, Romania, and Bulgaria. Around 5,000 years ago, kurgans were used in the Ukrainian and Russian flat unforested grasslands and their use spread with migration into eastern, central, northern Europe, Turkey, and beyond. refrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefref, & ref


    Progressed organized religion (around 5,000 years ago)

    Progressed organized religion (such as that seen in Egypt: 5,000 years ago “The First Dynasty dates to 5,150 years ago”). This was a time of astonishing religion development and organization with a new state power to control. Around the time of 5,000 to 4,000 years ago, saw the growth of these riches, both intellectually and physically, became a source of contention on a political stage, and rulers sought the accumulation of more wealth and more power.

    *The First Dynasty*

    Date: 3,150 B.C.E. (5,150 years ago)

     The Beginning Rise of the Unequal State Government Hierarchies, Religions and Cultures Merger

    The Pharaoh in ancient Egypt was the political and religious leader holding the titles ‘Lord of the Two Lands’ Upper and Lower Egypt and ‘High Priest of Every Temple’. In 5,150 years ago the First Dynasty appeared in Egypt and this reign was thought to be in accordance with the will of the gods; but the office of the king itself was not associated with the divine until later.

    Around 4,890 years ago during the Second Dynasty, the King was linked with the divine and reign with the will of the gods. Following this rulers of the later dynasties were equated with the gods and with the duties and obligations due to those gods. As supreme ruler of the people, the pharaoh was considered a god on earth, the intermediary between the gods and the people, and when he died, he was thought to become Osiris, the god of the dead. As such, in his role of ‘High Priest of Every Temple’, it was the pharaoh’s duty to build great temples and monuments celebrating his own achievements and paying homage to the gods of the land. Among the earliest civilizations that exhibit the phenomenon of divinized kings are early Mesopotamia and ancient Egypt.

    In 5,150 years ago the First Dynasty appeared in Egypt with the unification of Upper and Lower Egypt by the king Menes (now believed to be Narmer). Menes/Narmer is depicted on inscriptions wearing the two crowns of Egypt, signifying unification, and his reign was thought to be in accordance with the will of the gods; but the office of the king itself was not associated with the divine until later. During the Second Dynasty of Egypt 4,890-4,670 years ago King Raneb (also known as Nebra) linked his name with the divine and his reign with the will of the gods. Following Raneb, the rulers of the later dynasties were equated with the gods and with the duties and obligations due to those gods. As supreme ruler of the people, the pharaoh was considered a god on earth.

    The honorific title of `pharaoh’ for a ruler did not appear until the period known as the New Kingdom 3,570-3,069 years ago. Monarchs of the dynasties before the title of `pharaoh’ from the New Kingdom were addressed as `your majesty’ by foreign dignitaries and members of the court and as `brother’ by foreign rulers; both practices would continue after the king of Egypt came to be known as a pharaoh. Ref Ref


    CURRENT “World” RELIGIONS (after 4,000 years ago)

    Hinduism around 3,700 to 3,500 years old. Judaism around 3,450 or 3,250 years old. (The first writing in the bible was “Paleo-Hebrew” dated to around 3,000 years ago). Jainism around 2,599 – 2,527 years old. Confucianism around 2,600 – 2,551 years old. Buddhism around 2,563/2,480 – 2,483/2,400 years old. Christianity around 2,000 years old. Shinto around 1,305 years old. Islam around 1407–1385 years old. Sikhism around 548–478 years old. Bahá’í around 200–125 years old.


    Early Atheistic Doubting (at least by around 2,600 Years Ago)

    Around 2,600 Years Ago, there is a confirmation of atheistic doubting as well as atheistic thinking, mainly by Greek philosophers. However, doubting gods is likely as old as the invention of gods and should destroy the thinking that belief in god(s) is the “default belief”. The Greek word is apistos (a “not” and pistos “faithful,”), thus not faithful or faithless because one is unpersuaded and unconvinced by a god(s) claim. Short Definition: unbelieving, unbeliever, or unbelief.



    Here is the response from a fan about my explanations of the understanding of religion evolution: “Wow that’s very thorough research! I would like to buy your book when it is complete, please. I am a cultural anthropologist and have touched on the subject, but I have never seen such an in-depth work! I look forward to reading the finished product!”



     “Religion is an Evolved Product”

    What we don’t understand we can come to fear. That which we fear we often learn to hate. Things we hate we usually seek to destroy. It is thus upon us to try and understand the unknown or unfamiliar not letting fear drive us into the unreasonable arms of hate and harm.


    I am an Out Atheist, Antitheist, and Antireligionist as a Valuized Ethical Duty.

    How can we silently watch as yet another generation is indoctrinated with religious faith, fear, and foolishness? Religion and it’s god myths are like a spiritually transmitted disease of the mind. This infection even once cured holds mental disruption which can linger on for a lifetime. What proof is “faith,” of anything religion claims by faith, as many people have different faith even in the same religion?

    When you start thinking your “out, atheism, antitheism or antireligionism is not vitally needed just remember all the millions of children being indoctrinated and need our help badly. Ones who desperately need our help with the truth. Three things are common in all religions: “pseudo-science,” “pseudo-history,” and “pseudo-morality.”

    And my biggest thing of all is the widespread forced indoctrination of children, violating their free choice of what to not believe or believe, I hate forced hereditary religion.

    Hamangia culture around 7,250-6,500 years ago (Romania and Bulgaria)

    First Male God? To me, it seems he stole the goddess’s birthing stool, and possibly her power?

    Cernavodă, the necropolis where the famous statues “The (MALE) Thinker” and “The Sitting Woman” were discovered and may date some time after 7,000 to 6,600 years ago. refrefref

    The Hamangia culture began around 7,250-7,200 years ago and lasted until around 6,550-6,500 years ago It was absorbed by the expanding Boian culture in its transition towards the Gumelnitsa. Its cultural links with Anatolia suggest that it was the result of a settlement by people from Anatolia, unlike the neighboring cultures, which appear descended from an earlier Neolithic settlement. ref

    “With the emergence of sedentism comes the creation of paganism’s goddesses (fertility cult) around 12,000 years ago relating to agriculture (The Neolithic Agricultural Revolution) as well as later male gods (warrior cult) around 7,000 years ago relating to violence, this is my speculations. And, to me, this references the male god taking the goddess’ birthing chair or seat/throne of early paganistic believed expressed magic power.” ref 

    Fear of Wars Violence and the Creation of Male God? 

    A First Male expression of a god?

    I think so, and we see a lowering of the goddess that came before, as I believe, he now sits on her old birthing stool of power (sacred throne). To me, this represents the male and female duality and the first possible god sitting on a birthing stool to signify the male on the throne previously reserved only for women. I think the bent arms of both may possibly signify metaphoric “Bull Horns.” Part of the Hamangia culture (Romania and Bulgaria) between the Danube and the Black Sea and Muntenia in the south. 

    Paganism (beginning around 12,000 years ago)

    Paganism (such as that seen in Turkey: 12,000 years ago). Gobekli Tepe: “first human-made temple” around 12,000 years ago. Sedentism and the Creation of goddesses around 12,000 years ago as well as male gods after 7,000 years ago. Pagan-Shaman burial in Israel 12,000 years ago and 12,000 – 10,000 years old Paganistic-Shamanistic Art in a Remote Cave in Egypt. Skull Cult around 11,500 to 8,400 Years Ago and Catal Huyuk “first religious designed city” around 10,000 years ago.

    Paganism is approximately a 12,000-year-old belief system and believe in spirit-filled life and/or afterlife that can be attached to or be expressed in things or objects and these objects can be used by special persons or in special rituals that can connect to spirit-filled life and/or afterlife and who are guided/supported by a goddess/god, goddesses/gods, magical beings, or supreme spirits. If you believe like this, regardless of your faith, you are a hidden paganist.

    Around 12,000 years ago, in Turkey, the first evidence of paganism is Gobekli Tepe: “first human-made temple” and around 9,500 years ago, in Turkey, the second evidence of paganism is Catal Huyuk “first religious designed city”. In addition, early paganism is connected to Proto-Indo-European language and religion. Proto-Indo-European religion can be reconstructed with confidence that the gods and goddesses, myths, festivals, and form of rituals with invocations, prayers, and songs of praise make up the spoken element of religion. Much of this activity is connected to the natural and agricultural year or at least those are the easiest elements to reconstruct because nature does not change and because farmers are the most conservative members of society and are best able to keep the old ways.

    The reconstruction of goddesses/gods characteristics may be different than what we think of and only evolved later to the characteristics we know of today. One such characteristic is how a deity’s gender may not be fixed, since they are often deified forces of nature, which tend to not have genders. There are at least 40 deities and the Goddesses that have been reconstructed are: *Pria*Pleto*Devi*Perkunos*Aeusos, and *Yama.

    The reconstruction of myths can be connected to Proto-Indo-European culture/language and by additional research, many of these myths have since been confirmed including some areas that were not accessible to the early writers such as Latvian folk songs and Hittite hieroglyphic tablets. There are at least 28 myths and one of the most widely recognized myths of the Indo-Europeans is the myth, “Yama is killed by his brother Manu” and “the world is made from his body”. Some of the forms of this myth in various Indo-European languages are about the Creation Myth of the Indo-Europeans.

    The reconstruction of rituals can be connected to Proto-Indo-European culture/language and is estimated to have been spoken as a single language from around 6,500 years ago. One of the earliest ritual is the construction of kurgans or mound graves as a part of a death ritual. kurgans were inspired by common ritual-mythological ideas. Kurgans are complex structures with internal chambers. Within the burial chamber at the heart of the kurgan, elite individuals were buried with grave goods and sacrificial offerings, sometimes including horses and chariots.

    The speakers of Pre-Proto-Indo-European lived in Turkey and it associates the distribution of historical Indo-European languages with the expansion around 9,000 years ago, with a proposed homeland of Proto-Indo-European proper in the Balkans around 7,000 years ago. The Proto-Indo-European Religion seemingly stretches at least back around 6,000 years ago or likely much further back and I believe Paganism is possibly an approximately 12,000-year-old belief system.

    The earliest kurgans date to 6,000 years ago and are connected to the Proto-Indo-European in the Caucasus. In fact, around 7,000 years ago, there appears to be pre-kurgan in Siberia. Around 7,000 to 2,500 years ago and beyond, kurgans were built with ancient traditions still active in Southern Siberia and Central Asia, which display the continuity of the archaic forming methods. Kurgan cultures are divided archaeologically into different sub-cultures such as Timber GravePit GraveScythianSarmatianHunnish, and KumanKipchak. Kurgans have been found from the Altay Mountains to the Caucasus, Ukraine, Romania, and Bulgaria. Around 5,000 years ago, kurgans were used in the Ukrainian and Russian flat unforested grasslands and their use spread with migration into eastern, central, northern Europe, Turkey, and beyond. refrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefrefref, & ref

    Proto-Europe 8 000 – 5000 BC Anatolian Civilization and the Indo-European Language Spreads to Western Europe with Agriculture

    “Proto-European Cultures 8,000-2,500 BC Interactive map of the Proto-European cultures in the Balkans. It is now assumed that the pre Indo-European or Proto-European cultures which have evolved from rich archeological finds in the Greater Balkans, Greece and Sicily/Malta in the last 50 years go back to migrations from Anatolia. The archeological objects found in the Greater Balkans by Marija Gimbutas and others show a high sophistication in sculptures, ornaments and grave culture. The “Proto-European Culture” in the Balkans and Greece is the oldest collective “civilization” known. They preceed Egypt by 4000 and China by 6000 years. Several large urban settlements (20 000 people) have been found, posiibly under a female(?) priesthood.. The earliest temple cities have been unearthed in Göbekli (9200 BP) predating agriculture by 2000 years. The excavators believe that the large concentrations of laborers building the temples precipitated the need for agriculture.” ref

    “Is there’s a connection between “Hamangia Thinker” and Cycladic art and the “Hamangia Thinker.” These and other similar figures could relate to another Neolithic clay figure that was found at a Cucuteni-Trypillian culture site in the town of Tarpesti, Romania called the “Thinker of Tarpesti” resemblance between the Thinker of Tarpesti statue and the Hamangia Thinker statue is uncanny.” ref

    The Dead among the Living in the Hamangia Culture

    “Human bones in the domestic space are not uncommon during Prehistory, but the settlements of the Hamangia culture did not provide, many such remains. A recent reanalysis of the excavations performed at Cernavodă–Columbia C settlement brought to light the discovery of several human bone fragments from the habitation layer. But they do exist, and they were found at various depths, in association with pottery.” ref

    “The Butmir Culture was a major Neolithic culture which existed in Butmir, near Sarajevo, in the vicinity of Ilidža in Bosnia and Herzegovina. It is characterized by its unique pottery, and is one of the best researched European cultures from 5100–4500 BC. It was part of the larger Danube civilization. The Butmir culture was the home for several large settlements, among them was the site of Okolište in Bosnia dating to 5200-4500 BC. with population estimates between 1,000-3,000 people. The settlement was largest in the early phase (5200 BC) with an area of 7.5 hectare, from there it gradually declined to reach the size of 1.2 heatare in 4500 BC. The site likely consisted of parallel rows of houses that ranged in size from four to ten meters in length. The site also likely had a series of ditches surrounding it with a single entrance. Other known settlements was Butmir and Obre. The site of Okolište would likely have been an egalitarian society with no evidence of social stratification. Most animal remains found in Okolište belong to cattle, while a fair amount belonged to sheep, goats, and pigs. The diet of the Okoliste people consisted mainly of cattle, emmer, einkorn, and lentils. Although there was an importance of agriculture and animal husbandry, wild game was still hunted as a source of food.Certain characteristics of the Butmir pottery designs (e.g. its resemblance with Kamaresstyle Minoan pottery) made some suggest a connection to the Minoan culture on Crete. Of course, this was during the same time that some suggested Troy was found in the Neretva river valley, and overwhelming modern opinion is that the Butmir people were a unique culture of their own in the Sarajevo area. The culture disappeared during the Bronze Age, perhaps conquered by the Illyrians who, however, are only attested from 400 AD onward. The tribe who occupied the area in by far later Roman times were the Daesitates.” ref

    Neolithic Limestone “Thinker” Statue, 5000-4500 BC

    “A very rare statue representing a stylized man, sitting, resting his head in his hands in the attitude of the “Thinker of Cernavoda”. Found in the Balkan region. (map).” ref

    “The Boian culture ended through a smooth transition into the Gumelniţa culture, which also borrowed from the Vădastra culture. However, a segment of the Boian society ventured to the northeast along the Black Sea coast, encountering the late Hamangia culture, which they eventually merged with to form the Cucuteni-Trypillian culture.” ref

    Decline and end of the Cucuteni–Trypillia culture

    “There is a debate among scholars regarding how the end of the Cucuteni–Trypillia culture took place. According to some proponents of the Kurgan hypothesis of the origin of Proto-Indo-Europeans, and in particular the archaeologist Marija Gimbutas, in her book “Notes on the chronology and expansion of the Pit-Grave Culture”(later expanded by her and others), the Cucuteni–Trypillia culture was destroyed by force. Arguing from archaeological and linguistic evidence, Gimbutas concluded that the people of the Kurgan culture (a term grouping the Yamnaya culture and its predecessors) of the Pontic–Caspian steppe, being most likely speakers of the Proto-Indo-European language, effectively destroyed the Cucuteni–Trypillia culture in a series of invasions undertaken during their expansion to the west. Based on this archaeological evidence Gimbutas saw distinct cultural differences between the patriarchalwarlike Kurgan culture and the more peaceful egalitarian Cucuteni–Trypillia culture, which she argued was a significant component of the “Old European cultures” which finally met extinction in a process visible in the progressing appearance of fortified settlements, hillforts and the graves of warrior-chieftains, as well as in the religious transformation from the matriarchy to patriarchy, in a correlated east–west movement. In this, “the process of Indo-Europeanization was a cultural, not a physical, transformation and must be understood as a military victory in terms of successfully imposing a new administrative system, language, and religion upon the indigenous groups. Accordingly, these proponents of the Kurgan hypothesis hold that this invasion took place during the third wave of Kurgan expansion between 3000–2800 BC, permanently ending the Cucuteni–Trypillia culture.” ref

    “In Search of the Indo-Europeans, Irish-American archaeologist J. P. Mallory, summarising the three existing theories concerning the end of the Cucuteni–Trypillia culture, mentions that archaeological findings in the region indicate Kurgan (i.e. Yamnaya culture) settlements in the eastern part of the Cucuteni–Trypillia area, co-existing for some time with those of the Cucuteni–Trypillia. Artifacts from both cultures found within each of their respective archaeological settlement sites attest to an open trade in goods for a period, though he points out that the archaeological evidence clearly points to what he termed “a dark age,” its population seeking refuge in every direction except east. He cites evidence of the refugees having used caves, islands and hilltops (abandoning in the process 600–700 settlements) to argue for the possibility of a gradual transformation rather than an armed onslaught bringing about cultural extinction. The obvious issue with that theory is the limited common historical life-time between the Cucuteni–Trypillia (4800–3000 BC) and the Yamnaya culture (3300–2600 BC); given that the earliest archaeological findings of the Yamnaya culture are located in the VolgaDon basin, not in the Dniester and Dnieper area where the cultures came in touch, while the Yamnaya culture came to its full extension in the Pontic steppe at the earliest around 3000 BC, the time the Cucuteni–Trypillia culture ended, thus indicating an extremely short survival after coming in contact with the Yamnaya culture. Another contradicting indication is that the kurgans that replaced the traditional horizontal graves in the area now contain human remains of a fairly diversified skeletal type approximately ten centimetres taller on average than the previous population.” ref

    “Another theory regarding the end of the Cucuteni–Trypillia culture emerged based on climatic change that took place at the end of their culture’s existence that is known as the Blytt–Sernander Sub-Boreal phase. Beginning around 3200 BC, the earth’s climate became colder and drier than it had ever been since the end of the last Ice age, resulting in the worst drought in the history of Europe since the beginning of agriculture. The Cucuteni–Trypillia culture relied primarily on farming, which would have collapsed under these climatic conditions in a scenario similar to the Dust Bowl of the American Midwest in the 1930s according to The American Geographical Union,” ref

    “The transition to today’s arid climate was not gradual, but occurred in two specific episodes. The first, which was less severe, occurred between 6,700 and 5,500 years ago. The second, which was brutal, lasted from 4,000 to 3,600 years ago. Summer temperatures increased sharply, and precipitation decreased, according to carbon-14 dating. According to that theory, the neighboring Yamnaya culture people were pastoralists, and were able to maintain their survival much more effectively in drought conditions. This has led some scholars to come to the conclusion that the Cucuteni–Trypillia culture ended not violently, but as a matter of survival, converting their economy from agriculture to pastoralism, and becoming integrated into the Yamnaya culture. However, the Blytt–Sernander approach as a way to identify stages of technology in Europe with specific climate periods is an oversimplification not generally accepted. A conflict with that theoretical possibility is that during the warm Atlantic periodDenmark was occupied by Mesolithic cultures, rather than Neolithic, notwithstanding the climatic evidence.[citation needed] Moreover, the technology stages varied widely globally. To this must be added that the first period of the climate transformation ended 500 years before the end of the Cucuteni–Trypillia culture and the second approximately 1400 years after.” ref

    “PIE is estimated to have been spoken as a single language from 4500 BC to 2500 BC during the Late Neolithic to Early Bronze Age, though estimates vary by more than a thousand years. The linguistic reconstruction of PIE has also provided insight into the culture and religion of its speakers. According to the prevailing Kurgan hypothesis, the original homeland of the Proto-Indo-Europeans may have been in the Pontic–Caspian steppe of Eastern Europe. The linguistic reconstruction of PIE has also provided insight into the culture and religion of its speakers. From there, further linguistic divergence led to the evolution of their current descendants, the modern Indo-European languages. Today, the descendant languages, or daughter languages, of PIE with the most native speakers are SpanishEnglishPortugueseHindustani (Hindiand Urdu), BengaliRussianPunjabiGermanPersianFrenchItalian and Marathi. Hundreds of other living descendants of PIE range from languages as diverse as AlbanianKurdishNepaliTsakonianUkrainian, and Welsh.” ref

    Proto-Indo-European Religion 

    Introduction to Proto-Indo-European Religion

    The Proto-Indo-European Religion is reconstructed on the basis of linguistic analysis of the languages used by Indo-European-speaking people relating to traditional Paganism, the polytheistic religion of the Indo-European-speaking people. In India, the religion mostly continues as it has for millennia. Introduction to Proto-Indo-European Religion. Indo-European Languages and Pagan Religion; includes the PantheonMythsRitualsFestivals, Food, and Farming of the Indo-Europeans which is mostly organized by the months of the year. ref

    “With the emergence of sedentism comes the creation of paganism’s goddesses (fertility cult) around 12,000 years ago relating to agriculture (The Neolithic Agricultural Revolution) as well as later male gods (warrior cult) around 7,000 years ago relating to violence. And, to me, this references the male god taking the goddess’ birthing chair or seat/throne of early paganistic believed expressed magic power.” ref

    • The 7th millennium BC spanned the years 9,000-8,000 years ago. During this time, agriculture spread from Anatolia to the Balkans. In the agricultural communities of the Middle East, the cow was domesticated and use of pottery became common, spreading to Europe and South Asia, and the first metal(gold and copper) ornaments were made.
    • 6850 BC – 4800 BC: Advanced agriculture and a very early use of pottery by the Sesclo culture in ThessalyGreece.
    • 6800 BC – 4800 BC: The earliest domesticated pigs in Europe, which many archaeologists believed to be descended from European wild boar, were introduced from the Middle East by Stone Age farmers. 
    • 6500 BC: Two breeds of non-wolf dogs in Scandinavia; domestic hogs in Jarmo and cattle in Turkey
    • 6400 BCCardium Pottery begins its move to west along the northern Mediterranean coast, beginning at Seskio, Thessaly
    • c. 6400 BCYarmukian Culture begins at Sha’ar HaGolan, Israel
    • c. 6200 BC: Firm date of move of the first farmers from Turkey across the Aegean Sea and up the Danube into Romania and Serbia
    • 6200 BC: The 8.2 kiloyear event was a sharp decrease in global temperatures that lasted for 200–400 years, possibly caused by an influx of glacial meltwater into the North Atlantic Ocean
    • 6000 BCAgriculture fully present in the Balkans, see Old European Cultureref

    “The European Neolithic period—marked by the cultivation of crops and the raising of livestock, increased numbers of settlements and the widespread use of pottery—began around 7000 BC in Greece and the Balkans, probably influenced by earlier farming practices in Anatolia and the Near East. It spread from the Balkans along the valleys of the Danube and the Rhine(Linear Pottery culture) and along the Mediterranean coast (Cardial culture). Between 4500 and 3000 BC, these central European neolithic cultures developed further to the west and the north, transmitting newly acquired skills in producing copper artefacts. In Western Europe the Neolithic period was characterised not by large agricultural settlements but by field monuments, such as causewayed enclosuresburial mounds and megalithic tombs. The Corded Ware cultural horizon flourished at the transition from the Neolithic to the Chalcolithic. During this period giant megalithic monuments, such as the Megalithic Temples of Malta and Stonehenge, were constructed throughout Western and Southern Europe.” ref

    “The Boian culture originated on the Wallachian Plain north of the Danube River in southeastern Romania. At its peak, the culture expanded to include settlements in the Bărăgan Plain and the Danube Delta in Romania, Dobruja in eastern Romania and northeastern Bulgaria, and the Danubian Plain and the Balkan Mountains in Bulgaria. The culture’s geographical extent went as far west as the Jiu River on the border of Transylvania in south-central Romania, as far north as the Chilia branch of the Danube Delta along the Romanian border with Ukraine and the coast of the Black Sea, and as far south as the Rhodope Mountains and the Aegean Sea in Greece. The Boian culture emerged from two earlier Neolithic groups: the Dudeşti culture that originated in Anatolia (present-day Turkey); and the Musical note culture (also known as the Middle Linear Pottery culture or LBK) from the northern Subcarpathian region of southeastern Poland and western Ukraine. The Boian culture ended through a smooth transition into the Gumelniţa culture, which also borrowed from the Vădastra culture. However, a segment of the Boian society ventured to the northeast along the Black Sea coast, encountering the late Hamangia culture, which they eventually merged with to form the Cucuteni-Trypillian culture. Unlike later cultures that followed, there have not been many artifacts found in Boian culture sites of sculptures or figurines. However, the oldest bone figurine in Romania was found at the Cernica site, dating back to Phase I.” ref

    Old Europe Culture roughly begins around 9,000 years ago

    “Describe as a relatively homogeneous pre-Indo-European Neolithic culture in southeastern Europe located in the Danube River valley, also known as Danubian culture. roughly from 7000 BCE (the approximate time of the first farming societies in Greece) to ca. 1700 BCE (the beginning of the Bronze Age in Scandinavia). The duration of the Neolithic varies from place to place: in southeast Europe it is approximately 4000 years (i. e., 7000–3000 BCE); in parts of North-West Europe it is just under 3000 years (ca. 4500–1700 BCE).” ref

    “Thinking is that the evidence points to later migrations and invasions of the peoples who spoke Indo-European languages at the beginning of the Bronze age (the Kurgan hypothesis). Regardless of specific chronology, many European Neolithic groups share basic characteristics, such as living in small-scale communities, more egalitarian than the city-states and chiefdoms of the Bronze Age, subsisting on domestic plants and animals supplemented with the collection of wild plant foods and hunting, and producing hand-made pottery, without the aid of the potter’s wheel. There are also many differences, with some Neolithic communities in southeastern Europe living in heavily fortified settlements of 3,000–4,000 people (e.g., Sesklo in Greece) whereas Neolithic groups in Britain were small (possibly 50–100 people) and highly mobile cattle-herders.” ref

    “The Neolithic people were indigenous Europeans who were later conquered by the Indo-Europeans. The indigenous people of Neolithic cultures from present-day Romania are believed to have mixed with Proto-Indo-Europeans, giving birth to proto-Thracians from which Thracians and Dacians developed later on. The Neolithic period began when man developed farming and domesticated animals. The period included strictly agricultural societies, which ended once tools became widespread. The populations consisted of Indigenous people to Europe who lived there before the Indo-European expansion which gave birth to modern-day Europeans. Between the 7th and 5th millennia BC, communities throughout south-east Europe developed mixed horticultural economies, villages with well-built houses, an abundance of sculptural and ceramic art, craft specialization including weaving and metallurgy and elaborate ritual traditions. The abundance of fertile soils and rivers in these regions lead to the formation of larger human settlements.” ref

    Damien Marie AtHope’s Art

    refrefrefref 

    Animism: Respecting the Living World by Graham Harvey 

    “How have human cultures engaged with and thought about animals, plants, rocks, clouds, and other elements in their natural surroundings? Do animals and other natural objects have a spirit or soul? What is their relationship to humans? In this new study, Graham Harvey explores current and past animistic beliefs and practices of Native Americans, Maori, Aboriginal Australians, and eco-pagans. He considers the varieties of animism found in these cultures as well as their shared desire to live respectfully within larger natural communities. Drawing on his extensive casework, Harvey also considers the linguistic, performative, ecological, and activist implications of these different animisms.” ref

    My thoughts on Religion Evolution with external links for more info:

    “Religion is an Evolved Product” and Yes, Religion is Like Fear Given Wings…

    Atheists talk about gods and religions for the same reason doctors talk about cancer, they are looking for a cure, or a firefighter talks about fires because they burn people and they care to stop them. We atheists too often feel a need to help the victims of mental slavery, held in the bondage that is the false beliefs of gods and the conspiracy theories of reality found in religions.

    “Understanding Religion Evolution: Animism, Totemism, Shamanism, Paganism & Progressed organized religion”

    Understanding Religion Evolution:

    “An Archaeological/Anthropological Understanding of Religion Evolution”

    It seems ancient peoples had to survived amazing threats in a “dangerous universe (by superstition perceived as good and evil),” and human “immorality or imperfection of the soul” which was thought to affect the still living, leading to ancestor worship. This ancestor worship presumably led to the belief in supernatural beings, and then some of these were turned into the belief in gods. This feeble myth called gods were just a human conceived “made from nothing into something over and over, changing, again and again, taking on more as they evolve, all the while they are thought to be special,” but it is just supernatural animistic spirit-belief perceived as sacred.

     

    Quick Evolution of Religion?

    Pre-Animism (at least 300,000 years ago) pre-religion is a beginning that evolves into later Animism. So, Religion as we think of it, to me, all starts in a general way with Animism (Africa: 100,000 years ago) (theoretical belief in supernatural powers/spirits), then this is physically expressed in or with Totemism (Europe: 50,000 years ago) (theoretical belief in mythical relationship with powers/spirits through a totem item), which then enlists a full-time specific person to do this worship and believed interacting Shamanism (Siberia/Russia: 30,000 years ago) (theoretical belief in access and influence with spirits through ritual), and then there is the further employment of myths and gods added to all the above giving you Paganism (Turkey: 12,000 years ago) (often a lot more nature-based than most current top world religions, thus hinting to their close link to more ancient religious thinking it stems from). My hypothesis is expressed with an explanation of the building of a theatrical house (modern religions development). Progressed organized religion (Egypt: 5,000 years ago)  with CURRENT “World” RELIGIONS (after 4,000 years ago).

    Historically, in large city-state societies (such as Egypt or Iraq) starting around 5,000 years ago culminated to make religion something kind of new, a sociocultural-governmental-religious monarchy, where all or at least many of the people of such large city-state societies seem familiar with and committed to the existence of “religion” as the integrated life identity package of control dynamics with a fixed closed magical doctrine, but this juggernaut integrated religion identity package of Dogmatic-Propaganda certainly did not exist or if developed to an extent it was highly limited in most smaller prehistoric societies as they seem to lack most of the strong control dynamics with a fixed closed magical doctrine (magical beliefs could be at times be added or removed). Many people just want to see developed religious dynamics everywhere even if it is not. Instead, all that is found is largely fragments until the domestication of religion.

    Religions, as we think of them today, are a new fad, even if they go back to around 6,000 years in the timeline of human existence, this amounts to almost nothing when seen in the long slow evolution of religion at least around 70,000 years ago with one of the oldest ritual worship. Stone Snake of South Africa: “first human worship” 70,000 years ago. This message of how religion and gods among them are clearly a man-made thing that was developed slowly as it was invented and then implemented peace by peace discrediting them all. Which seems to be a simple point some are just not grasping how devastating to any claims of truth when we can see the lie clearly in the archeological sites.

    I wish people fought as hard for the actual values as they fight for the group/clan names political or otherwise they think support values. Every amount spent on war is theft to children in need of food or the homeless kept from shelter.

    Here are several of my blog posts on history:

    I am not an academic. I am a revolutionary that teaches in public, in places like social media, and in the streets. I am not a leader by some title given but from my commanding leadership style of simply to start teaching everywhere to everyone, all manner of positive education. 

    Damien Marie AtHope’s Art

    ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref 

    Damien Marie AtHope’s Art

    ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref

    Low Gods “Earth” or Tutelary deity and High Gods “Sky” or Supreme deity

    “An Earth goddess is a deification of the Earth. Earth goddesses are often associated with the “chthonic” deities of the underworldKi and Ninhursag are Mesopotamian earth goddesses. In Greek mythology, the Earth is personified as Gaia, corresponding to Roman Terra, Indic Prithvi/Bhūmi, etc. traced to an “Earth Mother” complementary to the “Sky Father” in Proto-Indo-European religionEgyptian mythology exceptionally has a sky goddess and an Earth god.” ref

    “A mother goddess is a goddess who represents or is a personification of naturemotherhoodfertilitycreationdestruction or who embodies the bounty of the Earth. When equated with the Earth or the natural world, such goddesses are sometimes referred to as Mother Earth or as the Earth Mother. In some religious traditions or movements, Heavenly Mother (also referred to as Mother in Heaven or Sky Mother) is the wife or feminine counterpart of the Sky father or God the Father.” ref

    Any masculine sky god is often also king of the gods, taking the position of patriarch within a pantheon. Such king gods are collectively categorized as “sky father” deities, with a polarity between sky and earth often being expressed by pairing a “sky father” god with an “earth mother” goddess (pairings of a sky mother with an earth father are less frequent). A main sky goddess is often the queen of the gods and may be an air/sky goddess in her own right, though she usually has other functions as well with “sky” not being her main. In antiquity, several sky goddesses in ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia, and the Near East were called Queen of Heaven. Neopagans often apply it with impunity to sky goddesses from other regions who were never associated with the term historically. The sky often has important religious significance. Many religions, both polytheistic and monotheistic, have deities associated with the sky.” ref

    “In comparative mythology, sky father is a term for a recurring concept in polytheistic religions of a sky god who is addressed as a “father”, often the father of a pantheon and is often either a reigning or former King of the Gods. The concept of “sky father” may also be taken to include Sun gods with similar characteristics, such as Ra. The concept is complementary to an “earth mother“. “Sky Father” is a direct translation of the Vedic Dyaus Pita, etymologically descended from the same Proto-Indo-European deity name as the Greek Zeûs Pater and Roman Jupiter and Germanic Týr, Tir or Tiwaz, all of which are reflexes of the same Proto-Indo-European deity’s name, *Dyēus Ph₂tḗr. While there are numerous parallels adduced from outside of Indo-European mythology, there are exceptions (e.g. In Egyptian mythology, Nut is the sky mother and Geb is the earth father).” ref

    Tutelary deity

    “A tutelary (also tutelar) is a deity or spirit who is a guardian, patron, or protector of a particular place, geographic feature, person, lineage, nation, culture, or occupation. The etymology of “tutelary” expresses the concept of safety and thus of guardianship. In late Greek and Roman religion, one type of tutelary deity, the genius, functions as the personal deity or daimon of an individual from birth to death. Another form of personal tutelary spirit is the familiar spirit of European folklore.” ref

    “A tutelary (also tutelar) iKorean shamanismjangseung and sotdae were placed at the edge of villages to frighten off demons. They were also worshiped as deities. Seonangshin is the patron deity of the village in Korean tradition and was believed to embody the SeonangdangIn Philippine animism, Diwata or Lambana are deities or spirits that inhabit sacred places like mountains and mounds and serve as guardians. Such as: Maria Makiling is the deity who guards Mt. Makiling and Maria Cacao and Maria Sinukuan. In Shinto, the spirits, or kami, which give life to human bodies come from nature and return to it after death. Ancestors are therefore themselves tutelaries to be worshiped. And similarly, Native American beliefs such as Tonás, tutelary animal spirit among the Zapotec and Totems, familial or clan spirits among the Ojibwe, can be animals.” ref

    “A tutelary (also tutelar) in Austronesian beliefs such as: Atua (gods and spirits of the Polynesian peoples such as the Māori or the Hawaiians), Hanitu (Bunun of Taiwan‘s term for spirit), Hyang (KawiSundaneseJavanese, and Balinese Supreme Being, in ancient Java and Bali mythology and this spiritual entity, can be either divine or ancestral), Kaitiaki (New Zealand Māori term used for the concept of guardianship, for the sky, the sea, and the land), Kawas (mythology) (divided into 6 groups: gods, ancestors, souls of the living, spirits of living things, spirits of lifeless objects, and ghosts), Tiki (Māori mythologyTiki is the first man created by either Tūmatauenga or Tāne and represents deified ancestors found in most Polynesian cultures). ” ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref, ref

    Mesopotamian Tutelary Deities can be seen as ones related to City-States 

    “Historical city-states included Sumerian cities such as Uruk and UrAncient Egyptian city-states, such as Thebes and Memphis; the Phoenician cities (such as Tyre and Sidon); the five Philistine city-states; the Berber city-states of the Garamantes; the city-states of ancient Greece (the poleis such as AthensSpartaThebes, and Corinth); the Roman Republic (which grew from a city-state into a vast empire); the Italian city-states from the Middle Ages to the early modern period, such as FlorenceSienaFerraraMilan (which as they grew in power began to dominate neighboring cities) and Genoa and Venice, which became powerful thalassocracies; the Mayan and other cultures of pre-Columbian Mesoamerica (including cities such as Chichen ItzaTikalCopán and Monte Albán); the central Asian cities along the Silk Road; the city-states of the Swahili coastRagusa; states of the medieval Russian lands such as Novgorod and