The Secret Star of the Magi and the Maranatha Word

There have been many who question why the geometry of a Star should be hidden within the paintings of Poussin and Teniers, or what significance a star, that is defined by certain locations, stones, or markers across landscapes, may have.  Over the years, many enthusiasts of the Rennes le Chateau mystery have demonstrated the occurrence of such shapes.  But what does it matter or what could it refer to?

When the said Key for the Maranatha Puzzle was released by Mr. Duncan Burden in the Time Monk Project article on Andrew Gough’s Arcadia website, Burden demonstrated how a hexagram/star could be derived by certain details in two paintings. These paintings were believed referred to in the decoded message of the Rennes le Chateau Grand Parchment.  The Cambridge Team involved in the project felt the hexagram was the Key mentioned within the Parchment’s mysterious phrase; Shepherdess no temptation that poussin and teniers hold the key pax 681 by the cross and this horse of God I complete the guardian demon at midday blue apples.  Burden exposed the hidden star within the paintings by Poussin and Teniers.

But the question remained, ‘why is it hidden?’  A possible answer came to mind as I was reading an old story concerning the Magi and the Star of Bethlehem which announced the birth of Christ.  Not the version found within only twelve verses of the Bible, but another which holds many more details; and even somewhat of a different story.  This additional account to Matthew 2: 1-12 describes the Magi waiting for a star, year after year, ever since Adam had been expelled from the Garden of Eden.

You could say the Magi were part of a ‘secret society’ who kept faith in a prophecy, passed to Seth and to them, which said a lost star of Eden would reappear in the future.  According to the story, this star was once above the Tree of Life, but it vanished when man sinned. Eventually, the mysterious star did reappear to the Magi and this Star Child guided them on their journey.

In a previous post, I mentioned this book.  It is called the Revelation of the Magi and contains a complete version of the claimed Magi’s testimony.  Only recently (in 2010), was it translated for the first time in English by Brent Landau. The one original, existing manuscript, written in Syriac, rests in the Vatican Library.  In Landau’s book, he shares knowledge of the manuscript was well known in the Middle Ages.  Many works of arts concerning the Magi include depictions which correlate to passages in the today’s neglected text.

For instance, Landau includes an image of a mid-fifteenth century frontispiece which shows details mentioned within his translation of the Magi’s account.  Christ is depicted in form of a star, and the Magi are shown bathing in the sacred spring beside the holy mountain.  The Bible, and other accounts, do not include this part of the tale.

What Landau most prominently points out, in his translation and commentary, is the controversial fact that the Revelation of the Magi suggests Christ could appear to any one at any time.  He also points out, that in the text, Christ existed before ‘Jesus of Nazareth’.  He reminds readers this coincides with the Gospel of John and the Word.  The verse which states; “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”

The Revelation of the Magi definitely makes a person wonder what some of the early teachings and beliefs of Christians were.  Landau pays particular attention to a verse which says the Magi’s revelation is but, “one drop of salvation from the house of majesty.”  This verse seems to imply that all revelations are from ‘Christ’ and holds the origins of all religions.  Even though I found The Revelation of the Magi fascinating, it wasn’t until I was reading another book which really got me wondering and would have me return to the Magi’s story.

First let me share a review found on the back cover of Landau’s book.  It says:

“Unread for centuries, the Revelation of the Magi retells the biblical story of the three wise men, expanding their minor role in the Christmas story into an epic tale of prophetic revelation.  In a new, lucid translation, Landau offers English readers a chance to hear this remarkable story for the first time.”

From this, and as even Landau shares within his book; “The ancient manuscript has lain hidden for centuries in the vaults of the Vatican Library”, it would seem this rare account of the three wise men is only beginning to become widely known.  Landau does state an Italian translation was made in the 1950’s, but since then only a few biblical scholars have discussed the text.  Written in Landau’s book, he says, “..very few specialists in early Christian apocryphal literature even know of its existence.” 

So I was surprised when I was reading another book (published in 1926), which is detailing much of the same story found within Landau’s new translation.  Obviously, versions of it have lain hidden somewhere else, as well.  It would seem this Magi’s story was not forgotten by all and may have been highly respected by certain people.  The book which I was reading, that told of the Prophecy of Seth and the Star, in an extremely similar way to what is written in Landau’s translation, was The Mystery of the Cathedrals by Fulcanelli.

Fulcanelli is a believed pseudonym for a well learned French alchemist and author.  His real identity is uncertain but he is assumed highly knowledgeable in the hidden mysteries and shares much of this in his book, The Mystery of the Cathedrals.  To find the story of the Star in there was intriguing to say the least.

The following are excerpts from the section of fulcanelli’s book which speaks of the lost star:

“…It tells that a race existed in the Far East on the shores of the ocean, who possessed a book attributed to Seth, which spoke of the future appearance of this star…..”, “….They chose out twelve from the most learned among them and from them most skilled in the mysteries of the heavens and gave themselves up to waiting for the star….”, “….They were called in the tongue, Magi, because they glorified God in silence and in a low voice..”, “….but finally it did appear on the Mount of Victory, in the form of a little child and presenting the shape of a cross, it spoke to them, instructed them and bade them depart for Judea.  The star went before them for two years and neither bread nor water was ever lacking on their journey…..”

For those who read Landau’s book, the similarities will immediately be noticed.  Other than the fact that both above accounts mention the Star appeared as a child (as Christ) before the birth of Jesus of Nazareth, what also caught my attention in these lesser known versions of the Magi, was the Star could only be seen by the ‘Worthy.’

In yet another version of this Magi story, Eusebius of Caesarea on the Star, the following passage is written:

“….And when the Magi saw that neither kings, nor the priests, nor the chiefs of the people perceived the coming of the Messiah, and the Star was concealed, they knew that, because they were not worthy, they did not perceive the birth of the Son, nor were they worthy to behold the Star.”

For me, this reminded me of the introduction to the Maranatha Puzzle.  It includes lines of “So be you warned that the unworthy shall perish in their efforts to find the Key” or “so be gone unworthy” or “Solis Sacerdotibus.”  Someone who was to claim the Prize also needed to complete the rhyme, “Worthy am I to read this book…..” 

As the Time Monk article revealed, the Key is a ‘Star’ and it was hidden in works of arts.   Could it be hidden so only the Worthy will see?  Or, because only the Worthy could see it, they would then know of other ‘Worthy’ followers to a differing and powerful belief.  The Maranatha Timeline comes to mind; “1650- Nicolas Poussin paints his second self-portrait, a painting that holds a message of the painter’s initiation to an understanding.”

Most fascinating still (at least for me), was within the Maranatha introduction it states the need to find ‘the Word’.  As previously mentioned, the Star is likened to the Word in the Bible.  In the Revelation of the Magi it says;  “And Adam instructed Seth his son about [text missing],and about the revelation of the light of the star and about its glory, because he saw it in the Garden of Eden when it descended and came to rest over the Tree of Life; and it illuminated the entire garden before Adam transgressed against the commandment of the Father of heavenly majesty.”

It goes on to say the Star was lost, and how the Book of Seth held the Prophecy for which the Magi (those who prayed in ‘Silence’), awaited.

During the course of the Maranatha puzzle, it was conveyed the Key was involved with Freemasonry ritual.  I will admit, Freemasonry is not my strong point, but, I am aware of the search for the Lost Word. It would seem to me that the Key and the Lost Word could hold the same symbolic meaning with taking into account of the above.  The lost Star of the Magi could be the Maranatha puzzle’s Word and ultimately the Lost Word of Freemasonry.

I had recently, in a comment section, made reference to a book included in the Puzzle’s bibliography; The Rosicrucian Enlightenment.  In this book is the following statement.  I found it interesting as it says it is from the 1725 Constitutions of Freemasons and is read to the admission of a new Brother.

“Adam, our first parent, created after the image of God, the great Architect of the Universe, must have had the Liberal Sciences, particularly Geometry, written on his heart; for ever since the Fall, we find the Principles of it in the Heart of his Offspring…..”

The lost Star of the Magi and the beliefs contained within the manuscript, as Landau wrote, was known to the learned men of the above time and age.  Could what have been ‘written on his heart’ have been thought as this lost Magi’s Star?  Could then the search for the Lost Word be to find or know what is ‘written on your heart’?  I realize much more research and study needs done, but I find this as an amazing possibility.  Especially, since I do feel this is found in the puzzle itself.

It was also said that the Maranatha Key was connected to the Secret of Rennes le Chateau.  Like said, Duncan Burden demonstrated how the Star/Key, could be revealed in the paintings relating to the mysterious Grand Parchment’s message.  So to know that Sauniere, the Priest of the supposed time in which the encoded parchment was found, had fashioned a seemingly random montage which included an image of the adoration of the Magi below another image showing a child being raised, is engaging.  Is there a connection?  Could Sauniere have known about the Star. Did he connect it to the Mason’s Word?  Did he know Fulcanelli?

Those who followed any of my thoughts with the puzzle know I believed the puzzle led a person to find ‘Truth written on the Heart’ by doing the puzzle.  As the Key is ‘Geometry’ and feeling the puzzle does direct a person to place the Key on the Heart, I can’t help but find the above connections appealing.  Even though they are not confirmed by Priory or the Cambridge team, and I certainly could be wrong, I personally will pursue the Star.  I do believe there is a powerful understanding given by following clues in the puzzle text and using the Star.

It has been brought up it is a bit strange the ‘Cambridge Team’, because of oaths, cannot reveal or offer any more explanation on the puzzle.  For why did they do the puzzle then?   If, and I say if, the Key does involve the Lost Word of Freemasonry, I for one can understand why they may not be able to share.  The search for the Lost Word is an important aspect to Freemasonry.  My only thought then to the question is they weren’t going to release it, the puzzlers were.

I realize there remain a lot of questions and parts of the puzzle to mesh, but I love the search and will continue to do so.  Whether or not all of the answers to the questions can be found, doesn’t really matter to me.  I know something will be.


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12 Responses

  1. Maria Rigel says:

    One of the clues of the puzzle warned specifically against this approach: ‘Not the perpetual star do you seek, just the star that lights the way.’

    The star of the Magi is Sirius. The stars of Maranatha are geometrical figures.

  2. Maria Rigel says:

    My previous comment was a bit harsh. Just because the star of the Magi normally refers to an actual star, it doesn’t mean that other people haven’t used the expression for a geometrical star.

    In particular, the star that “came to rest over the tree of life” must be the hexagram.

    The mention of Seth is interesting, because it was an Egyptian god. Egyptians say that it was the only god of the Hyksos, a people originally from Canaan that at some point invaded/took over (it may have been fairly peaceful) the Upper Nile. Some people think the Hyksos may have been the Hebrews just before the Exodus, and that the Exodus relates to the Egyptians conquering again that area.

    I’m not sure about the text in the “Mystery of the cathedrals”, but I suspect it’s highly symbolic. In other words, the star is more likely to be a geometrical star, rather than a star or planet.

  3. Nate Beck says:

    I’d like to offer another theory for you Maria, about the star of Bethlehem.

    This is rarely, if ever, discussed about the star of Jesus, but stars are very prominent symbols of angels in scripture.

    The Gospel of Luke, which makes no mention of the famous Star (which I find curious), tells us that angels heralded Christ’s birth. So, an alternate theory I have always preferred is that the star was an angel. For me, this is much better than historians and scholars and Johannes Kepler banging their heads around trying to figure out what celestial phenomena was taking place at that time that would account for the famous herald!

    • Maria Rigel says:

      Another significant bit of information is that scholars have established that the writings about the birth of Jesus were written after the rest of the Gospels. The people that wrote about the birth of Jesus knew what Jesus was going to do during his lifetime, as they reference some of the facts of his life. But the people that wrote the Gospels don’t say anything about a miraculous birth, which looks pretty strange, if it really was so out of the ordinary. The logical conclusion is that maybe there was nothing unusual about the birth of Jesus, and the story of the birth was written afterwards, perhaps to provide some sort of esoteric guide.

  4. Nate Beck says:

    Especially considering that Matthew says the star “went” ahead of the Magi and “stood over” the house where Jesus was. The star seems to be treated more like a being than an astral phenomena.

    As for angels being symbolized by stars, I refer you to the many passages in the Book of Revelation for that one. See Revelation 1:20 and 9:1 for examples, also Job 38:7, Judges 5:20 and Psalm 147:4 for other passages that speak of stars like beings. Personally I prefer the King James translation because of it’s great accuracy, but any Bible version will do.

    • Maria Rigel says:

      Just checked Matthew, and I noticed that it talks about “the star in the East”. It’s unclear whether it means that the Magi saw the star in their Eastern lands, that the star was in the Eastern sky, or both. It may sound like both would be inconsistent, but Bethlehem is South from Jerusalem, not East or West. So it doesn’t look like the star was keeping a constant direction anyway.

      The Eastern Star usually refers to Venus. I wonder if this is what Matthew meant?

  5. Maria Rigel says:

    It’s interesting that Landau points out there is a difference between Christ and Jesus, and that Christ existed before Jesus. I’ve seen in other places mentioned that historically, the Acts of the Apostles were written earlier than the Gospels (at least in their current version), and in the Acts of the Apostles there is almost no reference to the actual details of the life of Jesus. All that’s really said is that Christ died and resurrected. My current theory is that Jesus was “Christ made flesh”, somebody who embodied the spirit of Christ, that had been until then a disembodied spirit. This also fits with the views of the Cathars, who thought that Christ was a disembodied spirit.

  6. Maria Rigel says:

    Why did Poussin (and other painters before and after him) hide sacred geometry in their paintings? I don’t know for sure, but I think it might have been to make things easier for owners of the painters that also knew that sacred geometry. If you have to draw these figures from scratch, it takes a while. But if you have a painting that has already marked some key points, you may be able to look at the painting through something transparent or semi-transparent, mark the key points on it, and draw the sacred geometry quickly.

    What’s the significance of sacred geometry? I’m still working on that one, but I think it’s to indicate how to jump or turn from one place to another.

  7. Maria Rigel says:

    It’s interesting that the story says the star was above the tree of life, but vanished when man sinned. A hexagram can be clearly drawn on top of the tree of life. If something vanished, it wasn’t the hexagram itself, but something associated with the hexagram. Maybe a word that went with it?

  8. Maria Rigel says:

    It’s interesting that the magi came from the East, that’s associated with the air element, and the air element is also associated with the mysteries.

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