The Manichean Feast of the Empty Throne: its Babylonian Origin, its symbolism, its Essene Roots by Cyril Glasse 0000-00-00 00:00:00

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by Cyril Glasse
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The Manichean Feast of the Empty Throne: its Babylonian Origin, its symbolism, its Essene Roots by Cyril Glasse
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The "Feast of the empty Throne" or the Bema, was the main ceremony of Manicheism. Upon closer examination it was an adapted ritual whose traces can be found in the Jewish "Rosh Chodesh" and Rosh HaShana. Ultimately these were rituals of the Mesopotamian Moon God Sin, whose ziggurat was, and still is, in Ur of the Chaldees near Basrah Iraq. The Feast of the Empty Throne observes the last disappearance of the Moon before the Naw Ruz, or Spring Equinox and marks a vigil between the "last crescent," when the moon becomes invisible and disappears into the sun, and the "new crescent" when the new moon returns. It is a vigil of the "Dark of the Moon." The Bema was the last lunar month before the Spring Equinox or Persian Naw Ruz. The Manicheans adapted the ritual to celebrate the death of Mani, his "martyrdom," —his nirvana— and his "pari-nirvana," his apotheosis in eternal life as divine. But it is also the lunar counterpart to the Crucifixion of Jesus and the ceremony of Easter, which is also a Vigil. The Bema ceremony is remembered in Sufism as the empty sheepskin of the founder of the sect. The Essenes, as can be seen from the Dead Sea Scroll Calendar Texts, paid close attention to the daily phases of the moon. Mani was an orphan adopted into the Sabians, or Eastern Essenes. Disqualified by his club foot from being a priest, he started his own religion, which disguised itself as every religion under the sun, and still exists in mutated forms, particularly in Buddhism, Islam, Hinduism, Christianity, and Judaism, and is probably the most wide spread religion in the world. Forgotten in its original form, it is practiced by billions who do not suspect the true origin and nature of their beliefs. The "Feast of the Empty Throne" goes back to the dawn of modern consciousness, but is still with us.

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