Thursday, 9 May 2013

The Sumerian ABZU

                                                           The Abzu

            The Abzu which is often spoken of in Sumerian text, and literally means “Distant water”; ab meaning water, and zu translates, far, distant or deep. Many experts have deciphered this, as place that originates ground water. Fresh water that maintains life, with the use of irrigation, but is this the true meaning of the Abzu?

            In the Hymn to Elil, the text reads.. “the Abzu which no one can understand. It's interior is a distant sea which Heaven Edge cannot comprehend”. In the curse of Agade, the text reads.. “Abzu... where the fates are determined”. In Sumerian text the Abzu is always preceded by the article “the”, which lends the belief that the abzu is a state of being or state of mind v.s. a specific location. As an example one might say they are going to New York, a specific location, or they may say they are planning to go to “the” city, which implies a state of being, as in shopping, nite life or dinning out.

            In the Sumerian text relating Inana, (Enki's daughter) and Enki; Inana speaks, “I shall direct my steps to Enki, to the abzu, to (Eridu), and I myself shall speak coaxingly to him, in the abzu, in (Eridu). Directed her steps all by herself towards Enki's abzu  in (Eridu).....Enki the King of the Abzu. ...The lord (Enki) looked up at the abzu.”

            It becomes apparent that the Abzu, is something that is a lot more than a simple source of underground water.  We know that from these texts that Enki is the source of the Abzu, and it is located in his city of Eridu. Enki is also recorded in the above text, to have to look up to the see the Abzu. To have to look up in a land that is extremely flat, must mean that Enki is looking up to the top of the highest building in Eridu, which would be the temple, Ziggurat. This is confirmed by a fragmented text, of the Heron and Turtle, which reads.. “Then on the Ziggurat...King Enki was on the Ziggurat, the great brickwork of the Ziggurat...the abzu, the brickwork of the abzu.”

            In the middle figure (1) above an Anunnaki is climbing the Ziggurat at Eridu ,the 7 tiers of the structure are shown as coned levels, to speak to Enki, seated on his throne to the right, which is surrounded and encased by water.(Water is indicated by long wavy lines) Notice also that on the far left and far right are his attendants with their water poles. Could not this be the Abzu, that Inana speaks of when she wishes to speak to Enki? The second figure on the left is a Great God coming out of the Abzu atop the Ziggurat. The Abzu here seems lined with woven reeds, the same method used to build their boats and make their roofs water tight. The reeds are needed to keep the Abzu water tight to support a pool of water. Notice that the Ziggurat is always illustrated using the same markings in each illustration,as in many rounded conical triangles. This helps the viewer in understanding the depictions.

            In the figure (2) below Enki is seen climbing to the top of the Ziggurat at Eridu, followed behind by his minister Isimud (to his right). At the top of the Ziggurat, an Anunnaki  is coming out of the Abzu, while water is being poured on top of him, as if exiting from a watery state. Notice again the Ziggurat illustration is always duplicated as stacked cones. Is this the location of the Abzu, that is a state of being, rather than a specific location, mentioned in Sumerian text?

            If the Abzu represents a state of being, rather than a defined location atop the Ziggurat, then it must refer to a ceremony, a purification, or inauguration of some importance.

            In the figure (3) above, we see Enki again, surrounded by a water enclosure, with his two attendants and poles, on either side of him. This depiction is seen as a top view, as if looking down from atop the Ziggurat, with Enki about to leave, his Abzu. In the curse of Agade, the text reads.. “King Enki, emerges from the Abzu.”

            In the figure (4) above we see the Anunnaki, the same Anunnaki as in figure (2), exit the Abzu, atop the Ziggurat. This all raises the question. What exactly is this ceremonial practice, and what is it's purpose? The Sumerians speak of a “washing of the hands” ceremony, which occurs at the site of the Abzu or in the Abzu. If the washing ceremony occurs in the Abzu, could it refer to a full emergence into water, or through water, as a number of the figures above seem to indicate. In the creation of man text, it speaks of Enki taking clay to form man at the Abzu. In the curse of Agade text, it reads, “May your clay be returned to it's Abzu.” This seems to indicate that “life, creation of life , or the extension of life” would have a significance to understanding the Abzu and it's ceremonies.


            In figure (5) above we see an Anunnaki emerging from the Abzu atop the Ziggurat as depicted at the very bottom of the relief. Two upturned vases are pouring water into the vases at the bottom of the relief. The Anunnaki seems to have control over the water.  At the bottom of the figure are four wheels of 8 spokes. They represent the wheels at the four corners of the Chariot of the Gods, as does the other four wheels with 16 spokes. The wheel within the wheel. There is clearly a strong connection between the Chariot of the Gods, and the Abzu, which together enhances the abilities and life of the ancient Gods.


           In the above figure (6), again the water is pouring from the top vases to the bottom vases as in the Abzu, while the occupant of the Abzu is some how connected to the Chariot of the Gods, similar to figure (5). This is very similar to the depictions of Enki and his ability to control water from his body. The Sumerians had the same word for water as for semen, which meant "the beginning of life or the renewal of life", just as irrigated water brings life to a desert.The above figure also seems overjoyed if not in a state ecstacy while in the Abzu. The water is somehow transformed from the Chariot as it enters the Abzu. Both of the above figures are gaining a renewal of life as the water passes over them.

           The real purpose of the ABZU? The Abzu is able to transform water to allow the Great Gods to extend their lives. Once in the Abzu they totally immerse themselves in it's water. Without the Abzu the Great gods would simply have grown old like the rest of mankind and eventually died. They had to continually enter the Abzu and immerse themselves in it's water in order to extend their lives. This is the state of being that is referred to as "entering the Abzu". A state of rejuvenation. An exhilarating moment where water itself can be controlled and where one seems to levitate inside the Abzu.        

            It's clear that the Abzu is controlled by Enki. This is shown (figure 7 below) by how Enki is depicted in ancient reliefs. Enki is seen having water or controlling water from his body, with the pole bearers on either side. Enki is seen to the right (figure 2 below) atop the Ziggurat, as shown by the figure on left, and at the centre of the Abzu, with water surrounding him.
(figures below)


           The wavy lines represent water in Sumerian drawings, and it's this water that has been transformed by the chariot of the Gods and is about to be extracted by the figure on the left..This is the water that these Great Gods immersed themselves in the Abzu and extend their lives...This is what is represented by the Tree of life in the middle of the figure..
The water after being transformed....and now gives life.

                               Ancient Annunaki Tree of Life - The Sumerian Gods the Anunna, Anunnaku, Ananaki

            The great god shown above is not taking water to the tree of life as many have suggested but taking this transformed water away to be used to extend their lives. This is shown by the bucket in the figures hand.

            Enki's position within the Anunnaki is greatly enhanced due to his control of the Abzu and his possession of the Tablets of Destiny. The combination of these two items which either enhance, empower or entitle each other, makes Enki a very important and powerful personage.

            In the Sumerian text of the curse of Agade, Ninurto takes from Agade all it's wealth, just prior to it's destruction, to Enki's Abzu. The text also reads that the Abzu at Agade has it's poles removed. Thus terminating the ability or power of the Akkadian Abzu. The text also refers to the wealth of Agade's royal throne room. This wealth is stripped from Sargon's royal family. Where does the wealth of Agade's Treasury end?

            The text reads, “Ninurto brought the jewels of ruler ship, the royal crown, the emblem and the royal throne bestowed on Agade.” In Isaiah chapter 45, YHWH speaks of a dark and hidden place, that No man may know, where the treasures of the kingdoms of earth are hidden. After Enlil destroyed Yahweh's political kingdom on earth, the Akkadians, and Enki took all their treasures prior  to the fall of their capital city Agade, was Yahweh retaliating in seizing many iconic earthly treasures of earthly kingdoms, just prior to their downfall? Did Yahweh seize Babylons earthly treasures just moments before she fell to Cyrus the Great?  Isaiah 45:3, reads as if speaking to Cyrus, “And I will give you the treasures of darkness, and the hidden riches of secret places,..” The word “darkness” would refer to a  fearful and forbidding place to man, while “hidden” and “secret” would refer to, No man being able to find these iconic treasures.

           Are these treasures stored in an ancient Abzu?

           To name a few treasures that no man has found, would be the ark of the covenant and the Cup of Semiramis, which weighed 15 talents of gold, or about 1500 lbs. This was essentially a very expensive punch bowl, for rather lavish parties. Golden icons were never melted down or destroyed in ancient times, but seen as war booty, to display over ones enemies. It wasn't until the Greeks, that gold was a means to pay foreign trade accounts or used as a currency reserve. Prior to the Greeks, gold was basically bathroom fixtures for the ruling class. Would many of these iconic pieces, still be hidden from us?

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