I continue to receive questions regarding the "Revelation 12 prophecy," which is a phrase some associate with the sensational arguments being circulated online and elsewhere which claim that the lineup of sun, moon, stars and planets on September 23rd of this year (which is to say, this coming Saturday) fulfill the description found in Revelation 12, heralding (some say) the arrival of apocalyptic events such as those described in the book of Revelation.
Regular visitors to this blog or to my main website at Star Myth World (dot com) know that I have already written two different blog posts discussing these sensational claims by those who want to force Revelation 12 to correspond to the celestial lineup of September 23, 2017. Those posts are linked again here:
In addition, I created a video discussing this so-called "Revelation 12 prophecy" which you can view by following the link in this sentence (and it is also embedded in the first of the blog posts linked above).
I also created a sort of "infographic," which you can see by following the link in this sentence (and it is also included in the second of the blog posts linked above).
The fact that I am still receiving questions asking me if I have heard of the "Revelation 12 prophecy" and what I think of this "prophecy," even after publishing all of that, indicates to me that the sensational videos and articles describing September 23 of this month as the fulfillment of the text of Revelation 12 (and promising various extraordinary events based on a literal interpretation of events described in the book of the Revelation which is found in the "canonical" New Testament) are reaching huge numbers of people, some of whom are somehow finding their way to my website and asking what I think about all of this (even though they are probably not regular visitors to my site).
As anyone who does a simple search of YouTube can verify, many of the videos discussing September 23rd as the "fulfillment" of Revelation 12 indicate that they have received multiple millions of views (it is of course possible that those "view counts" are somehow being inflated by those who wish to boost the awareness of this "September 23rd" argument, and to add to the credibility or stature of the videos declaring September 23rd to be the advent of various literal events supposedly described in the Revelation text -- but since we don't have any way of verifying whether or not view counts are being inflated, let's assume that the view counts shown on these videos are accurate).
A few examples of these videos with counts in the millions or in the several hundreds of thousands include this one (presently showing over 7.9 million views), this one (presently showing over 1.6 million views), and this one (presently showing over 5.2 million views) -- among many other possible examples.
Additionally, many major newspapers have picked up on this same theme, and are running articles which discuss the sensational claims being circulated regarding September 23 and Revelation 12, including this one in today's Washington Post, or this one from this past Thursday's Daily Express (a tabloid of the type that gravitate towards the sensational, and one of the oldest, first printed in 1900), or this one from Fox News online also published this past week (Fox News could be categorized as a different sort of tabloid also gravitating towards the sensational).
Most of those stories appearing in "mainstream" media sources are careful to criticize those claiming a connection between Revelation 12 and September 23, sometimes calling the alleged connection a "conspiracy theory." The seemingly inappropriate use of this term in this context could be the topic of a whole new discussion, but its frequent appearance in mainstream media sources this week regarding the Revelation 12 text suggests the possibility that someone is deliberately trying to lump together two completely unrelated groups:
a) those who are suspicious of the completely bankrupt official explanations put forward to explain events such as the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963, or the collapse of three modern steel-reinforced buildings on September 11, 2001 into their own footprints at freefall speeds
b) those who interpret Biblical texts literally and make sensational videos arguing that September 23, 2017 "fulfills" the descriptions in Revelation 12, and will thus usher in literal versions of the visions described in the Revelation text.
I personally would see this consistent use of the phrase "conspiracy theory" as a possible attempt by several media sources to smear those in group "a" by trying to lump them together with those in group "b," but setting aside that entire discussion, it is clear that the appearance this week in multiple media outlets, each with large audiences, of stories about the "Revelation 12 prophecy" and a supposed connection to September 23, 2017, will have the effect of greatly increasing popular awareness of this sensational idea, whether or not those media outlets take care to point out that these "prophecies" have been dismissed by NASA and should be considered "conspiracy theories."
Obviously, based on the arguments I've already published in the blog posts, video, and infographic linked above, I believe that the claims of a connection between September 23 of this year and the events described in the text of Revelation 12 are completely misguided and probably in some cases deliberately manipulative.
Thus, it should be equally obvious that I do not in any way endorse or accept the idea that literal events based on the visions described in Revelation 12 are foretold to begin manifesting in the world around us beginning this coming Saturday.
In fact, as I have explained in numerous previous blog posts as well as at greater length in my 2016 book Star Myths of the Bible, there is overwhelming evidence that all of the visions described in the book of Revelation included in the "canonical" New Testament are based on celestial metaphor.
The vision of the smoke that arises from the bottomless pit, for example, along with locusts which come out of the smoke as well as the "tails like unto scorpions" which the locusts also possess, and even the crowns like gold upon their heads, all of which are described in Revelation chapter 9, can be shown to be cogent descriptions of the region of the brightest portion of the Milky Way galaxy (which represents the smoke that arises from the bottomless pit), including the constellations Sagittarius and Scorpio, which flank that brightest portion of the Milky Way, along with the Southern Crown or Corona Australis which is between Sagittarius and Scorpio.
These connections between the visions described in Revelation 9 and the region of Sagittarius and Scorpio were discussed in Appendix 36 of Hamlet's Mill (published in 1969), and in that appendix, the authors also credit the work of the German philologist Professor Franz Boll (1867 - 1924), who perceived the same connection. Nevertheless, many decades later, you can still find literalists who believe that Revelation 9 is somehow describing literal helicopters and other modern military vehicles or weapons (as you can readily verify for yourself by searching for "revelation helicopters" and visiting the multiple articles and videos that will be suggested as a result).
However, the connections between the descriptions in the Revelation 9 text itself and the constellations in the vicinity of the brightest portion of the Milky Way are extremely compelling -- and what is more, it can be shown that other Biblical passages involving a description of "locusts" point us towards the very same part of the night sky (including the famous events described in the Exodus account, in which a plague of locusts is one of the plagues preceding the crossing of the Red Sea, the Red Sea in this case also being portrayed in the heavens by the shining band of the Milky Way galaxy).
Similar connections between specific constellations and the "events" described in all the other chapters of Revelation could also be demonstrated -- which should indicate to anyone who perceives these connections that Revelation is describing the cycles of the heavens, and not any supposed literal events that are slated to take place in terrestrial history.
And this point should give pause to all those creating or promoting videos declaring that Revelation 12 matches up with September 23, 2017 -- because those connections to September 23rd are themselves based upon the perception that Revelation 12 is not talking about a literal woman in the process of giving birth, but rather that it is talking about the constellation Virgo!
The very connection that they are trumpeting with their multi-million-view videos demonstrates that they understand that the figures in Revelation are celestial figures.
If they can see that for Revelation 12, do they admit it for Revelation 9 and for the rest of the "events" described in Revelation?
Because all of the events described in Revelation are celestial events, based upon celestial metaphor. Revelation 9 does not describe Apache helicopters -- it describes Sagittarius and Scorpio on either side of the brightest portion of the Milky Way galaxy (and it includes references to Corona Australis, the Southern Crown, as well).
Thus, if Apache helicopters begin terrorizing people around the globe, it is not a literal or inevitable fulfillment of Biblical prophecy foreseen by the author of Revelation 9 (although it is possible that someone desiring to manipulate public opinion could try to put that idea in people's minds). It is a scriptural passage describing a certain portion of the night sky (and a certain place on the annual cycle of earth's orbit, described on the Great Wheel of the zodiac, each portion of which had spiritual significance in the ancient language spoken by the world's myths, scriptures and sacred stories).
And, as overwhelming evidence indicates, not only are all of the events described in Revelation based upon celestial metaphor (rather than on literal terrestrial history), but so are all the other events and figures described in the rest of the ancient scriptures which some call the Old and New Testaments of the Bible.
So, those making these videos about Revelation 12 and the supposed connection to September 23 should realize that their claims that the woman who is in the act of giving birth actually corresponds to the constellation Virgo open up the very real possibility that all the supposedly literal events of a literal "rapture" and "tribulation period" are actually based upon celestial metaphor as well.
In other words, if they perceive that the woman with the crown of stars described in Revelation 12 and verses 1 and 2 is actually a woman in the heavens who corresponds to the constellation Virgo, then they should not stop there: they should go on to realize that the great red dragon having seven heads and ten horns found in verse 3 is actually Scorpio (crouching below the upraised feet of Virgo in the night sky), and that the man child who is caught up unto God and his throne described in verse 5 is also a constellation (in this case, the Northern Crown, caught up to the constellation Hercules, as I describe in my video). This would suggest that the "rapture" that some are connecting with the Revelation 12 text is not a literal event that will happen in terrestrial history (any more than the scorpion-tailed locusts of Revelation 9 represent literal helicopters or other war-machines).
If they perceive the celestial metaphor for the first two verses of Revelation 12, why don't they perceive celestial metaphor in the rest of the verses of the chapter? And then, why don't they perceive the same celestial metaphor in the rest of the book of Revelation (after all, Professor Franz Boll was writing about it back in the late nineteenth century and early twentieth century)? And then, why don't they consider the possibility that if the "events" in Revelation are based upon celestial metaphor, the same might hold true for the stories found in the rest of the ancient scriptures collected into the Old and New Testaments?
The evidence is in fact overwhelming that all of the world's ancient myths, scriptures, and sacred stories are based upon celestial metaphor. These ancient stories contain profound wisdom for our lives -- but that message is completely obscured, and in fact inverted, when we take them literally.
They are not speaking a "literal language" -- they are speaking an esoteric, a metaphorical, and a celestial language. If we learn to listen to them in the language that they are actually speaking, we have a much higher likelihood of hearing what they are trying to tell us. If we insist on pretending they are speaking a language which they are not actually speaking, we have a much higher likelihood of distorting their message.
Those who are making videos declaring that the description in Revelation 12: 1 and 2 corresponds to the constellation Virgo have caught a tiny syllable of the language that the text is speaking. They are correct in their assertion that the woman in Revelation 12 is actually a personification of the constellation Virgo (although they are probably completely incorrect in their assertion that her "crown of twelve stars," also described in Revelation 12:1, corresponds to the stars of the constellation Leo plus an additional three planets, which is essential to their argument connecting Revelation 12 to September 23, 2017).
Nevertheless, setting aside their colossal manipulation of the identity of the crown of twelve stars, their connection of the woman to Virgo is correct -- and should open their eyes to the fact that the other figures in Revelation 12, as well as the rest of Revelation and indeed the rest of the Bible (and the rest of world myth, for that matter) may also be based upon the constellations and other heavenly figures that travel through our night sky.
In the end, perhaps it is not the people claiming that September 23 will mark the beginning of literal events fulfilling visions described in Revelation who are the "conspiracy theorists." Perhaps it is those who perceive that attempts to use literal interpretations of ancient scriptures (specifically those in what we call the Bible) to manipulate the minds of hundreds of millions of people might be a sort of "conspiracy" -- and a very old one at that.
Let us all hope that no one is attempting to use the supposed connection between Revelation 12 and September 23 of this year to manipulate people's perception of any extraordinary geopolitical events that they might also have a hand in manipulating. That would be more than just a conspiracy -- it would be a criminal conspiracy, and one that would be a betrayal of humanity, and of the ancient wisdom contained in the myths themselves.