Note the head of Draco, pictured with a sharp
beak, comes very close to the foot of Hercules. This is from
Durer's famous woodcuts of 1515. With the inversion of the
images, all directions are reversed. In
Lyra is to the left of the Hercules composite, not to the right,
as shown here. Inversion also accounts for the figures being
shown from the back.
We note quite a few serpents in the cosmic imagery here. There
is Draco sidling down from the polar region. Ophiuchus is also
called Serpentarius, and the reptile he wrestles is Serpens.
Finally, Hercules is shown holding Cerberus, the three-headed
serpent of the Underworld. In Quest for the Zodiac,
I suggested that the serpent imagery in the constellations
might be connected with ancient knowledge of genetics and the
DNA code. This is consistent with Jeremy Narby's thesis in The
Cosmic Serpent: namely, that the ancients, like
some indigenous peoples today, had direct experiential access
to the molecular structure of matter.
the term stellar-genetic continuum for the the linking
of cosmic and earthbound biophysics that glimmers in ancient
traditions, especially Egyptian sacred astronomy. Today interest
in this link has given rise to a fledgling science called exobiology,
on earth is connected with life beyond earth.
Detail of Hercules and Serpentarius head to head.
Elijah Burritt, Celestial Atlas, 1835.
Note that this mythological mapping of the
skies encodes two primary astrophysical directions: the Solar
Apex in Hercules,
and the Galactic
Center between the Archer and the Scorpion. Did whoever initiated the
tradition of picturing the Archer know that the direction to
the Galactic Center was located just beyond the tip of the
arrow? It it hard to imagine that this orientation could have
Burritt's map is not inverted. It shows correctly how the constellational
imagery matches the observable composites. Consider the entire
scenario: The solar shaman Hercules is locked head to head
with the Snaketamer who strides upon the Scorpion which extends
its left claw to jar the Scales and upset the balance of the
pans, while the Archer stands offside, aiming its arrow in
a cautionary manner at the lower
of the Scorpion.
Now decode that story.
Return to Shaman
in the Sky.