Dear reader, my name is Luis Miguel Goitizolo. Below is an abstract from my book The Wheel of Time - A Study in the Doctrine of Cosmic Cycles which I recently translated from my Spanish original and will shortly be published in the United States.


The Mystery of Time

Among the great mysteries of the universe, few have exerted so strange a fascination upon the mind of man as that of time. Indeed, time is not a mere enigma. Unfathomable at its deepest core, time is, in its own right, a mystery of mysteries.

Over the centuries, this mystery has persisted and captivated the world's greatest intellects: Solomon, Pythagoras, Plato, St. Augustine, Newton, Descartes, each fell in turn irresistibly attracted to it. Even in recent times, it troubled great scientists like Einstein and his "successor," Stephen Hawking.

Regarding this, however, we are struck by wonder. For it appears that Einstein was not the first, nor was he the only, to discover that time is relative to space. From time immemorial, such knowledge has been in the possession of the ancient Hindu people, as some of their most sacred texts - particularly The Puranas - corroborate.

As to Hawking, he was not long ago wondering whether time merely advances in a linear fashion, as the orthodox physics has always postulated, or it rather does it by circles - as has always been conceived by the Eastern traditional doctrines.

We will do well, therefore, to review two of our deepest-rooted notions - namely, that it is only in the last few centuries that the greatest scientific discoveries have been made, and that the ancient peoples had absolutely NO scientific knowledge of the world.

A third example will help us reinforce this point. Based on radioactive measurements, the modern science has for some time been estimating the age of the Earth as approximately 4,500 millions of years since it was formed within the solar system. More recently, the analysis of stones from the Moon has produced an even more accurate - and apparently definitive - length of time: 4,310 millions of years, a figure I unfortunately have not been able to verify although it certainly matches the former. Well, this length is nearly identical to that of 4,320 million years which, according to the Puranas and some Indian astronomical treatises, is the duration of what the Hindus call a "Brahma's day" (or kalpa) within the immense cycle of cosmic manifestation.

It may, indeed, be argued that the Hindus came by this figure by mere accident or that it simply was invented, as was also invented everything connected with the ages and cosmic cycles. To refute such objections we would need to determine whether the whole of these notions is backed up by other sacred writings of the world - i.e. whether there is agreement on these issues between the Hindu scriptures and other sacred books of the world - and then, as a collateral evidence, to establish whether the remaining information the said scriptures contain is reliable enough; all this with a view, at least at a preliminary stage, to cloak them with a certain degree of respectability when faced to the most obstinate skeptics, those who plainly make fun of these theories.


 

Some Scriptural Evidence Regarding Time

From the last century onwards, remarkable coincidences have been observed between the Bible and certain texts of the Western tradition, on the one hand, and certain Eastern sacred books, mainly Hindus, on the other. To mention the best known, the Bible speaks of a Universal Flood that takes place at the end of a period of sheer degradation of the human race, and the Puranas and other sacred texts, both from the East and West, talk about periodical, partial devastations of the universe by water. (Actually, memories of one or several "universal floods" remain alive in ancient traditions throughout the world.) But there are many other coincidences, as will be seen below.

For example, the Book of Genesis (1:2) relates how, in the beginning, "the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters;" Bhagavata Purana (5, 25: 1, ff), in turn, says that at the beginning of creation, Vishnu (God) is lying over the Causal Ocean.

In the Gospel of St John (John, 14:2), Jesus states: "In my Father's house there are many mansions." Brahma-samhita (5:40), in turn, says God's glow, the brahmajyoti, contains countless planets.

Again, in a passage of the "Gnostic" gospel of Thomas (77), says Jesus: "I am all: from me all came forth, and to me all attained." Svetasvatara Upanishad (4:11), another well-known sacred Hindu book, states: "He [God] governs all the sources of creation; the universe emanates from Him, and to Him it comes back in the end."

On the other hand - and herewith we are drawing further into matter - the book of Genesis (3:23, etc.) describes the "fall" and exile of man from Paradise, a recurring topic in the scriptures and traditions from all around the world that is closely associated to the idea of world ages and cosmic cycles. While not that obviously, also in John 14:3, 15, 19, 15, and in his announcements of the end of time, Jesus would be referring to them; also Daniel 2:21, 29 ff, 7:1 ff, other prophets from the Old Testament, St John's Revelation, etc.

Last but not least, some authors have observed remarkable concordances on these issues between some Eastern scriptures, like the Tao Te Ching of Lao Tzu and the Hindu Upanishads, on the one hand, and several stoic, hermetic, and neo-platonic treatises on the other.

The modern science has in turn validated various passages from the Bible. Some of the best-known examples, like the predominance of an evolutionary order in the creation of species (fish - birds - beasts), accurately reflected in Genesis 1: 20 ff, and the fact that in the last ten or twelve thousand years there might indeed have occurred such a great disaster as to produce a "universal flood," as evidenced both by the rings of the Californian sequoias and the fossils and corpses deposited and preserved in frozen mud, are just a few of them. Other examples include a knowledge of the spherical shape of the Earth in Isaiah 40:22, where the Hebrew word chugh, commonly translated as "circle" or "orb," may also mean "sphere;" of the Earth floating in space, in Job 26:7; of a primitive Earth cloaked in darkness and in a watery steam, in Genesis 2:6; and of the very steps of the Creation in Genesis 1: 3 ff, whose sequence - if considered from the point of view of a terrestrial observer, as well as that each "evening" with its corresponding "morning" represent vast periods of time - perfectly harmonizes with the one postulated by the most recent cosmological theories.

However, it is among the Eastern scriptures themselves that can be found extraordinary examples of scientific information.

Bhagavata Purana (9, 3:30-34), for example, recounts the trip of king Kakudmi to Brahmaloka, the highest planet in the universe, governed by the powerful demigod Brahma, the creator of the world, to ask for his advice on a good husband for his daughter Revati. When the king reaches Brahma's palace, the god is hearing musical recitals by the Gandharvas, the celestial musicians, and Kakudmi waits in the anteroom; when the music is over, he expresses his desire. Brahma breaks in laughter: "O King, he answers, whoever might have been thought of by you have been swept off by Time. Twenty-seven chatur-yugas [27 x 4'320,000 terrestrial years] have rolled by and we hear no more even of the races of their sons, grandsons and great grandsons..."

Now, although a space-time bend as the one exemplified by this story may result from the different translation speeds of "higher" and "lower" planets around the Sun according to the Hindu tradition, it still remains illustrative of the well-known paradox anticipated by the theory of relativity for interstellar traveling at close to light-speed velocities.


More Scriptural Evidence  Regarding Time

complementing the account of King Kakudmi's interestelar journey at close-to-light speed in that precious Hindu scripture, Bhagavata Purana (9, 3:30-34), here is a similar story from the Islamic tradition which, while curiously inverse, adds force to our case.

Muhammad visits the seventh heaven riding the resplendent mare Alburak. At the moment the mare takes flight, she overturns a jar filled with water. On Muhammad's return after countless eons, the Prophet reaches down to lift the jar from the ground... and lo, not a single drop has been spilt!

In another passage from Bhagavata Purana (3, 29:43) is stated, with astounding ease, that the complete universal body is expanding. This fact, only in recent times corroborated by astronomical observation supporting the 'Big-Bang' theory, could hardly be described as a product of either chance or imagination even by the most obstinate skeptics; and on the other hand, such theory does not exclude the possibility of a recurring expansion - contraction of the universe through immense periods of time, a derivation that in turn perfectly fits within the framework of the Hindu doctrine of cosmic cycles and many other similar concepts.

In effect, this idea is found in the majority of the traditional doctrines. In Taoism, for example, the Tao has a reverting motion of withdrawal and return to the origin (See Tao The Ching of Lao Tzu, particularly Chapters XXV and XL). Hermetism, in turn, asserts that the world "begins from where it ceases." (Corpus Hermeticum I, 11, 10.7). Again, according to the Neo-Platonist Proclus: "...Everything moves on and returns, has a cyclical activity... unites the end with the principle." And also the Stoicism attributes this motion to its Logos.

We can see the list is lengthy. But let us now focus on history, where modern archaeology has repeatedly confirmed information from the Bible and other Western texts. For example, Assyrian king Sargon II was for long known only from the narration in Isaiah 8:1 and the critics rejected this reference as devoid of any historical value. Later on, archaeological excavations shed light on the magnificent palace of Sargon at Korsabad and on numerous inscriptions alluding to his reign, such as the siege and conquer of Samaria and the subsequent exile of the Israelite people.

Similarly, not long ago was confirmed Sennacherib's expedition to Israel which, according to the Old Testament version (2 Kings 6:13 ff, 7:36; Isaiah 36: 1, 37: 37), ended in failure and the subsequent return of the Assyrian king to his own country. (While this piece of information is not found on the mural inscriptions within the royal palace, such exclusion is perfectly understandable from a natural reluctance to admit one's own defeats.)

A special mention deserve, for their great significance, the dramatic discoveries made by the amateur archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann from 1870 onwards. As is widely known, this remarkable German archaeologist, challenging the general view that would see in the Iliad but an imaginary story, started excavations at the site designated by the poem as the seat of the old Troy and found not one, but nine superimposed cities, with the sixth, counted from below, being the one sung by the epics; and then in Mycenae, described by the same poem as "most superior materially to Troy," brought to light huge stone walls, carved lions and the fabulous treasure of Atraeus - all of them wonders which, were it not for him, would most likely be regarded as legendary until our days.

From these examples, it would seem that where it comes to science, and to a certain extent history, the great scriptures and sacred texts of the world are indeed reliable; in this sense, not only can we conclude that "the Bible was right", as was the title of a famous book, but also that other writings of the world were right as well; similarly, based on the same examples, it might be inferred that the Hindu texts appear to be valid for the longer periods of time, of millions and trillions of years, while the Bible and other Western texts would be valid for the "shorter" periods of thousands or, perhaps, hundreds of thousands of years. Of course this is not accurate as, for one thing, some passages of the Bible, notably the first verses of Genesis, obviously cover immense periods of time; but at least for the purposes of our present query, we can very well afford this generalization.

As to the Hindu texts, we will have many an opportunity to learn the intricacies of their elaborate doctrine. I will just say right now that, as occurs with many other traditions, the word millennium - as well as other similar terms like "great year", century, etc - is synonymous with any great cosmic cycle and not only one thousand years, as might be thought, and is usually applied to them by properly using it in the sense of any "indefinite" length of time. This should be stressed out not only by reason of the fact itself, essential to the study of the doctrine, but because it is somehow consubstantial with the existence of all sorts of correspondences and assimilations between cycles of various orders and magnitudes, so that such expressions as "day" and "night", where it comes to immense periods of time, sound perfectly natural.


An Unknown Common Origin?

A question naturally arises from the above: if it was not purely and simply invented, or was not the result of mere fortunate speculation, where did the compilers of these Scriptures obtain such information, whose origin is lost in the pages of time? That the various cultures were spontaneously and simultaneously born around the world, all sharing a strangely similar lore, is hard to accept; the numerous analogies rather suggest an unknown common origin and, in fact, it would appear to be more logical, or at least more plausible, that there previously existed an older civilization that was the depository of the knowledge based on such information, and that all other cultures received from it such knowledge, which was then modified and, for the most part, distorted by the particular circumstances of time and place.

This notion of a common ancestral culture, which would account for the universality of a certain "hidden" lore, has been widely supported and developed by renowned researchers such as René Guénon and others, according to whom, in the apparently chaotic assortment of most ancient myths and legends that describe the nature and origin of the universe, traditionally handed down by societies throughout the world, there is evidence of such primeval civilization. This archaic society would be prior to all ancient known civilizations, including those from Mesopotamia, Egypt, China and India, not to mention the American continent; and so, stories whose original meaning has been lost, but have otherwise been preserved in a fragmentary and distorted form, might provide genuine, essential information about the great mysteries of the universe.

By way of example, I will quote but one of such stories: The Sioux Nation in North America talk about a cycle of four eras; there is a buffalo that loses one leg at every era; now we are in the last era, which is of great degradation, and the buffalo has but one leg left. In Bhagavata Purana (1, 16: 18 ff) the same story is told about the bull Dharma ("Religion"). We are currently in the last age - the Age of Kali, an era of quarrel and hypocrisy - and Dharma is supported by only one leg...


Lima, May 2010


 

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A Message from The Author

 

Dear Friend,

Ever since I was
a youth I was fascinated by Oriental wisdom and particularly by the Hindu doctrines. However, it was not until a few years ago that I undertook the task of studying the ancient doctrine of cosmic cycles from different perspectives, though mainly using the most relevant sacred texts from all around the world. In time, I felt the urge to write a book about my studies in that matter in my mother tongue, Spanish, which I titled "La rueda del tiempo" (in English, "The Wheel of Time"). It is excerpts of that book and other original articles dealing with similar topics which I will start publishing through this medium as of today.

More recently, after some years as a networker promoting various programs, I decided to translate my book into English, a task that was successfully completed a few month ago. And over the past weeks and months I have been publishing excerpts of this translation, as well as other original articles in English that also deal with similar topics, on various online media of the United States and other countries.

 

Thank You,

 

Luis Miguel Goitizolo
Lima - Perú


miguelgoitizolo@gmail.com

                                                                                                    

     

 
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