Kenya: Racing All Began in Africa, the Home of the Olympics
The East African (Nairobi)
24 August 2008
Posted to the web 25 August 2008
JANETH JEPKOSGEI, PAMELA Jelimo and Mercy Cherono are three Kenyan girls who took part in the Beijing Olympics.
They are also pedigree Nilo-Hamitic. If they had lived a few thousand years ago, they would have qualified for apprenticeship as top priestesses of Asiis, the creator Goddess of the Nilo-Hamitic Kalenjin.
For, among these peoples and — through them — their neighbours, especially around the Mediterranean, stamina and fleet of foot were the major criteria for temple service — which was the origin of the Olympic Games.
In the beginning, then, the Olympics were neither “Games” nor “Greek” in any strict sense of those words. First, the races had nothing to do with the “sportsmanship” or “spirit of fairness” which the institution has claimed ever since Europeans reinvented it just over a century ago.
On the contrary, the Olympics began as foot races to qualify as priestesses of the Triple Goddess. Indeed, later the races turned into deadly combats for the privilege of becoming the consort of the matriarch, the Goddess’ Alter Ego on earth.
Another completely false — if universally popular — assumption is that the “Olympics” were so called because they originated around Olympus, the mountain astride Thessaly and Magnesia in northeastern Greece. Greece was far from the scene of the original action.
Thus Robert Graves may mislead you when he writes — in his book The Greek Myths — that Mount Olympus was the home of Eurynome and Ophion. The reader may naturally conclude that the great Irish poet and historian is referring to that same Thessalonian Olympus.
Yet Graves’ statement is of supreme importance. For these two deities were the respective creator Goddess herself and her serpentine demiurge of the matriarchal Libyo-Ethiopians, otherwise known as Pelasgians, Danaans and Cadmeains, the autochthons of that southeastern European country.
And they were the ones who gave it the name Greece, the adjective Greek being but the English rendition of the Nilotic term Graikoi (from Koi, “people of” or “worshippers of,” and Graiai, “the Grey One.”)
The Graikoi were called so because they were devotees of the goddess in her phase as crone (when she was “hoary with age.”)
The history and mythology reveal that Olympianism refers not just to the activities that developed into the modern games but to the whole way of life — the people’s means of coming by a livelihood, their political institutions, the religious crucible in which all of it was played.
IT WAS A HARD-NOSED WAY OF appeasing the matriarchs and their followers on the Grecian plains below Olympus. For, although they had been defeated, they remained the majority and, therefore, a potential threat to the security of the new system.
One strategy of the patriarchal mythographers was to cause all the goddesses and their male exponents (like Dionysus and Apollo) to be mythically “reborn” from Zeus’ own body to enable the Hellenic patriarchs to claim that these were all children and, therefore, also subordinates of Zeus.
Attempts were made to mildew their brains by some other method so that they now always supported patriarchal causes, attitudes and teachings. “I am all for the father,” the Goddess Athene herself — hitherto the unchallenged judge — grovels during some debate soon after her “rebirth” from the brow of Zeus.
To make assurance double sure, there was a permanent male casting of vote in the Olympian council so that male victory was now automatic after every debate.
Western tutelage is familiar with Hera, Io, Athene and Artemis (all of them names of one and the same Goddess) and with Apollo, Dionysus and such other originally Nilotic deities, but only in their “reborn” or subdued Hellenic status.
Europe knows them only after they have been transformed into entities completely subservient to the machistic assumptions, schemes and deeds of Zeus of the Hellenes and his male satellites. In the Internet today, every Western blogger describes Athene as a “daughter of Zeus.”
Graves’ statement also raises an inevitable question. Where exactly was the Olympus of Eurynome (“the Universal Ruler”) and Ophion (“The Serpent”)? Nobody that I am aware of has ever posed that question. Everybody, including even Robert Temple (in The Sirius Mystery), assumes that it stood exactly where Hellenic Olympus stands, beyond Thessaly.
Yet the autochthonous Greeks called Omphalos — their socio-religious umbilical cord — did not lie anywhere north of the intrusive Gulf of Corinth. It did not lie even in sacred Boeotia and Attica. It lay, rather, in Arcadia, the heart of the Peloponnesian peninsula, decidedly south of the gulf.
As Temple tells it, Arcadia was derived from the same Nilotic word Arqh (meaning “silver”) which has spawned such terms as arc, ark, argo, argonaut, arcane, architecture, archaeology and argentina.
ARCADIA’S SUPREME EMOtional significance lies in that it was the place where the native Greeks were holed up when the Hellenes poured into their country.
All this strongly suggests that, in pre-Hellenic times, Olympus was the Pelasgic name for a Peloponnesian eminence and that this same name was what was given by the related Cadmeians to the mountain beyond Thessaly, but that, with the triumph of the Hellenes, the name became confined by decree to this northern eminence.
It suggests that the Arcadian significance of Olympus declined and was forgotten. Indeed, on certain maps of ancient Greece, including one printed by Graves, we find a place called Olympia and, significantly, it is situated on the southern shores of the gulf, in the Peloponnesian kingdom of Elis, a district of Arcadia of extraordinary holiness to the Greeks of African pedigree, the Pelasgians.
Indeed, Graves tells us specifically that the Olympic Games were named after this Arcadian Olympia, and not after the Thessalo-Magnesian Olympus. He writes: “[Some] say that… males… the Curetes… protected Zeus’s cradle in Crete, and that they afterwards came to Elis and raised a temple to propitiate Cronus.
“Their names were Heracles, Paeonius, Epimedes, Iasius [and] Acesidas. Heracles, having brought wild-olive from the Hyperboreans [the coeval Britons] to Olympia, set his younger brothers to run a race there, and thus the olympic games originated [my underscoring].”
Let us examine this statement using the little evidence we have. The term Olympus is actually only a Latinisation of Olympos. But was Olympos itself Hellenic? Was it not just a Hellenisation of a Libyo-Ethiopian or Hamito-Nilotic word taken to Greece by the Pelasgians or Danaans or, through Canaan, by their Cadmeain relatives?
The earliest Hellenic derivation was actually Olumbos. The Pelasgic prototype seems to have been Olumbo or Olimbo. This raises deep curiosity.
The epic tradition of the Luo — my own community (which is Nilotic) — often mentions Got Olembo (“Mount Olembo”), a legendary eminence of which they speak with profound reverence.
Yet nobody has ever pinpointed its exact location. Nevertheless, Olumbos or Olimbos seems to have been nothing but the Nilotic Olimbo, Olumbo or Olembo to which the well known Hellenic Greek suffix OS has been attached.
The problem is that even a man as knowledgeable as Graves lumps the Pelasgo-Cadmeian story of creation with every other that has come to us through such Hellenic mythography as the Iliad, the Odyssey and the Theogony and calls them The Greek Myths. This title is dangerously misleading because it may reaffirm the false assumption that the word “Greek” necessarily refers to the Hellenes, the modern inhabitants of Greece.
Yet, although we know these stories only through the pens of such committed Hellenists, very few of the stories were actually Greek or in any sense Hellenic.
Only after the Hellenic invasion of Greece in the latter half of the second millennium BC was Hellenism infused into what are actually Pelasgic originals. The Hellenists systematically retold those stories in order to smuggle Zeus into them as the central character.
But the stories were already spread much wider than “the Greek world.” Greece of the Danaans was definitely a part of the stage which Homer and Hesiod capture. But it was peripheral.
Hesiod’s “Greek world” included what are now Kenya, India, Russia, Denmark Britain, Morocco and Congo and all the countries inside that circle, with Cush, Egypt, Libya, Crete, Canaan and Sumeria as its numinous epicentre.
Any slight examination shows that the theatre sprawled as far as between the Brahmaputra, the Mekong and the Irrawady, on the one side, and the Shannon, the Senegal and the Congo, on the other, and from the Cape of Good Hope to Lapland.
For example, the Erinnyes (or Fates) — who represented the Goddess’s spirit returning in her triad to torment the consciences of the patriarchal matricides — were headquartered in Azan or Azania (in what are now Kenya, Tanzania and Mozambique.
In short, the drama that we call “Greek mythology” was enacted in places as far from one another as Cipango, Melanesia, Madagascar, Mexico, Canada and Iceland.
Shakespeare was right: To the ancients, all the world was a stage.
We can be quite certain, however, that, wherever the original mountain of the Goddess lay, an etymological form of Olympus — including Olympos, Olumpos, Olumbos, Olimbos, Olimbo and Olembo — was the name of the original home of the Triple Goddess.
HAVING ORIGINATED IN the Nile valley, the Pelasgians (aka Danaans, Cadmeians or Libyo-Ethiopians) would most probably have said that the archetypal mountain-home of the Goddess was situated somewhere along the fateful Nile.
Is it possible to identify that place? Most certainly. There is an imposing eminence on Uganda’s western Nile district, known as the Ruwenzori. An alternative appellation of the Ruwenzori is Mountains of the Moon, the name by which even the European explorers of our continent two centuries ago knew that eminence.
That is highly instructive. For the Triple Goddess of the Nilo-Hamites was also celebrated as Moon Goddess. What place can be more fitting for the Moon Goddess than the Mountains of the Moon?
We can thus surmise that the Ruwenzori was what Graves was referring to when he said that Olympus was Eurynome’s abode.
It was what the Pelasgians meant when they said that Olimbo was the base of creation by Eurynome and Ophion, only that these are Hellenised forms of those names and we may never know how the Libyo-Ethiopians spelled or pronounced the original names.
When the ancient Egyptians spoke of the south as the abode of both their ancestors and their deities, they could hardly have meant Greece or Rome or Palestine, countries which were decidedly to the north of them. Quite simply, then, the Pelasgian home of creation by Eurynome and Ophion could not have been anywhere north of the Mediterranean Sea.
Many researchers, including Graves, Temple and Omowale, would identify the Ruwenzori as the original Olympus, the “template” of all the other steeple-peaked divine abodes throughout the world, including the Sinaitic Horeb, the Japanese Fujiyama, the Tibetan Meru Andes of the Incas.
The cinch is that its archetypal name was what the Pelasgians, on moving from Africa to Europe, transferred from an African mountain or hill to an Argolian counterpart — Argolis being the southern Greek peninsula, between Attica and Laconia where Danaos, the eponymous Nilotic father of the Greek Danaans, first landed.
This was where the Africans, sailing in the Argo — for which they are also celebrated as Argonauts in the legend of the Quest for the Golden Fleece — first arrived in mainland Greece to set up the city of Argos near its northwestern shore, moving a little to the northwest to set up Arcadia at the foot of a mountain which they called Olimba (the name which the Latins later rendered as Olympia).
Slightly later, their Cadmeian Ethiopian cousins arrived, by way of Canaan, to settle in Thessaly at the foot of a mountain which, because they carried exactly the same Nilotic Olympian tradition, they gave exactly the same name Olimba (the name which the Hellenes later rendered as Olimbos, Olumbos or Olumpos and the Latins as Olympus).
In sum, “steeple-peaked Olympus” of Thessaly became the divine headquarters of the Hellenic pantheon only in the latter half of the second millennium BC, after the Aryan Hellenes had overrun the country to overthrow the African Goddess from her perch.
The Hellenes then borrowed from the Pelasgians a minor god called Dio (“Zeus”) and imposed him as the tyrant of Olympus, bestriding the narrow world like a Colossus to rape Pelasgic females and destroy their shrines through a deadly electric “Thunderbolt” which he had stolen from Demeter (another name of the Goddess).
In fact, Zeus had been merely a “sacred king,” the royal consort of the Queen, always playing second fiddle to her, enjoying only as much power as Prince Philip, England’s Duke of Edinburgh.
Before the Hellenic advent, Zeus had acted merely as the principal — but not the only — means of reproducing the heir to the throne.
As a matter of religious necessity, when his “sell-by date” had come, the sacred king was sacrificed remorselessly on the altar of his “tanist,” a younger pretender to the queen’s bed. This pre-Hellenic practice was, indeed, the origin of the Nemean Games, Isthmic Games and what came to be called Olympic Games.
In pre-Hellenic times, foot races were run in Thebes, Memphis and other centres throughout the Nile valley (from Jinja to the Delta) exclusively by girls to compete for the position of high priestess of the Triple Goddess.
“The Olympic Games,” Graves informs us, “originated in a foot race, run by girls, for the privilege of becoming the priestess of the Moon-goddess Hera… and since this event took place in the month of Parthenios, ‘of the maiden,’ it seems to have been annual.
“When Zeus married Hera — when, that is, a new form of sacred kingship had been introduced into Greece by the [Hellenic] Achaeans… — a Second foot race was run by young men for the dangerous privilege of becoming the priestess’s consort, Sun to her Moon and thus king of Elis…”
The month of Parthenios is named after Parthenos, the Hellenic word which, like Isaiah’s Almah — has been mistranslated as “virgin,” but which means simply a woman who has reached the birth-giving age or, like the Kikuyu muiritu, has been initiated (through circumcision) into womanhood.
However, the point Graves is making, concerning the month of Parthenios, is that the race was originally annual and became a four-year event only later. Here Graves tells us that “…a second foot race was run by young men…” But for what? The answer: For “…the dangerous privilege of becoming the priestess’s consort…”
In other words, the adjective “second” in Graves’ statement refers, not to the order of events on a particular sporting occasion, but to institutional or socio-systemic succession.
The “second” kind of race began as an overlap with the first and then, with the triumph of patriarchy, eventually completely replaced it.
THE FIRST RACE HAD BEEN confined to girls for the privilege of serving the goddess in her shrine. The second race was now run by boys for the privilege of serving as the queen’s bed-fellow, the “alter ego” of the demiurge.
The myth that the modern “Olympic Spirit” — along with Western “democracy” — was a bequest from Athens of the Hellenes was invented by the Western ruling classes a mere century ago. Western Europe, in particular, has always thought of itself as the heir to some imaginary greatness of the Hellenes.
“Representative” or liberal “democracy,” for instance, has absolutely nothing to do with the Periclean system.
Yet even the most learned Western European and North American historian and philosopher continue to make the ludicrous claim that Western democracy is a bequest from the Hellenes.
Nothing can be more groundless because Periclean democracy was an unabashed dictatorship of the Plebeians against the overthrown minority aristocracy. What made Periclean dictatorship democratic was only that it was perpetrated by or in the name of the vast majority of the Demos, the people.
Today’s “Olympic Spirit” represents only a profoundly guilty conscience by the Western corporate family, a class of Europeans and North Americans which, in the realm of practice — in business, politics or sports — has shown that it is utterly incapable of any form of justice.
The foot race was run to select girls with enough fleet of foot to be of effective service to the goddess, a practice which began in the Great Lakes of East Africa, in what are now Uganda, Kenya and Congo, with its nucleus probably in the Ruwenzori-Lake Victoria complex.
This area is probably part of Azania. That is why Kenyan runners Catherine Ndereba and Lucy Kabuu — who belong to the Bantu group — would also have qualified as prophetesses of the Triple Moon Goddess.