- Religion and Philosophy
The Book of Enoch
Enoch was a patriarch taken to Heaven by two angels on God's orders. He was then transformed into Metatron, a great angel having 365,000 eyes and 36 pairs of wings, and appointed to be the scribe of Heaven. A patriarch of the seventh generation from Adam, Enoch lived 365 years on Earth before translating to Heaven. (Genesis 5:18-24)
The three Enochian manuscripts, otherwise known as the Book of Enoch, are by archaeologists believed to have been written sometime between the 2nd century B.C.E and the 6th century C.E. The Book of Enoch offers the richest angelology known in Christian literature. It is the detailed account of Enoch's travels in the heavens and hells, and of the angels therein. Although, the Book of Enoch was declared apocryphal by St. Jerome, a father and doctor of the church, on account of the obscurity of its origins and its portrayal of a multi-layered Heaven containing hells populated by fallen angels, it had a great influence on the development of doctrines in the New Testament. After it fell into obscurity for hundreds of years, the Book of Enoch is the subject of persistent scholarly and theological interest today.
The Book of Enoch Storyline
Enoch, the 7th descendant of Adam and Eve, was of the lineage of long-lived fathers. He was born to Jared, a 162-year-old father who thereafter continued to live another 800 years, while he himself lived 365 years on Earth and 1 year in Heaven. Enoch was "born in righteousness" and was chosen by God to be the witness of the consequences of sin and the rewards of righteousness. He was elevated by two angels into the ten different circles of Heaven to learn their mysteries along with the future of the Earth up to the Judgement Day. He was then brought back to Earth in order to pass on his teachings to his sons and to write his manuscripts. After one year of doing this, he was brought back to Heaven and transformed into Metatron.
The first of the Enochian manuscripts predates the Dead Sea Scolls and was composed in Judea in either Hebrew or Aramaic language. 1 Enoch was very important in early Christianity and was cited by numerous authors. It had a great influence on the New Testament, as it shaped the nature of the Messiah as we know it, our knowledge of eschatology and demonology, and that Satan and his minions are equally responsible for the Fall. 1 Enoch, the first part of the Book of Enoch, contains 107 chapters divided into 5 books.
The Book of the Watchers (Chapt. 1-36)
Semyaza led a host of angels to descend upon the Earth and corrupt humankind. They took human wives and begot grotesque giants, the Nephilim. Azazel taught humans the arts of metals and weaponry, science, chemistry, magic, astrology, herbology, deception and so on. The results of this corruption was many and varied - adultery and bloodshed and the innocents' prayers for help.
God ordered Raphael to bind Azazel and cast him into darkness, Gabriel to destroy the children of adultery and of the Watchers, and Michael to tell Semyaza that the Watchers will be punished. Asuriel was sent to Lamech, the father of Noah, to warn him of the coming of the Flood.
In the rest of the book, Enoch is accompanied by angels on a heavenly tour - he beholds the foundation of the Earth and the Firmament of Heaven, he learns the names of the six holy archangels (Raphael, Raguel, Uriel, Saraqael, Michael and Gabriel), he also gets to see the terrible place where the Watchers, the Fallen Angels, will forever be imprisoned, the place where the souls of the dead are awaiting the Judgement Day, and the place where the Tree of Life stands.
The Book of the Similitudes (Chapt. 37-71)
In this book Enoch is carried into the ends of Heaven by whirlwinds. He is taught about the punishment of the wicked and the haven of the righteous. He learns the secrets of lightening and thunder, of elements, sun, stars and planets. He is also shown that those who deny the name of God will not ascend into Heaven. Enoch beholds the son of man who had existed before the world came to be and by whose arrival on Earth shall the unrepentant perish and the righteous be resurrected.
Enoch travels to places where millions of angels reside. In the Heaven of heavens he sees a crystal contraption between crystal pillars that look like tongues of living flame surrounded by the seraphim, cherubim, ophanim that guard the throne of God. Enoch also sees the Anticedent of Time and falls flat on his face before his glory.
The Book of the Astronomical Writings (Chapt. 72-82)
This book concerns the workings of the cosmos - the sun, the moon, the winds, the elements, the stars, the constellations, the four directions, the astronomical laws. Enoch learns these things in order to reveal them to his son, Meduselah, upon his return to Earth.
The Book of the Dream Visions (Chapt. 83-90)
This book concerns itself with various symbolism, the Flood, the Exodus, the Canaan, Jerusalem, the Maccabean revolt, and the Messianic kingdom, all of which he is to reveal to his son, Meduselah, upon his return to Earth.
The Book of the Epistle of Enoch (Chapt. 91-107)
The Book of the Epistle of Enoch is about sin and righteousness. It describes the ways the sinners will suffer after the day of judgement. It also confirms that the righteous will be placed on thrones of honour in Heaven. The book describes that the end of time will come when a plague is visited on the Earth and when the heavenly hosts of angels descend among us to execute the judgment of God. The book also talk about Lamech who will father a son, Noah, that looks like an angel.
Angel Language & Alphabets
Used to invoke and communicate with angels as well as to encode prayers and charms, angel alphabets are many and varied. Some of these alphabets are attributed to individual angels, Gabriel, Raphael, Michael, Metatron and so on. Some angel alphabets resemble cuneiform while others are in close relationship with early Samaritan and Hebrew script. In Kabbalistic literature, angel alphabets are also called eye writing, because letters are made from straight and curved lines and circles like eyes.
Famous angel alphabets are Celestial Writing (related to stars), Malachim (inspired by the angelic Malachim order and their sacred book of Malachi), Theban (also the Honorian Script, related to lunar energies), Passing of the Rivers (also the Talismanic Script of King Solomon, named after the four rivers flowing through Eden: Pison, Euphrates, Gihon, Hiddekel).
According to the Talmud, the language of angels is Hebrew. In other lore, the way angels communicate has nothing to do with words and sounds, but rather with thought that is directed at other angels. Popular belief holds that angels understand all languages, but earlier it was believed that the use of certain languages, such as Aramaic, can prevent angels from understanding or accepting a prayer.
2 Enoch is the second part of the Book of Enoch and is called the Slavonic Apocalypse of Enoch, because it exists only in Slavonic. For this reason some scholars think it was written in the Middle Ages while others insist that the text dates back to the 1st century C.E. 2 Enoch consist of 20 manuscripts of varying length and completeness that cover the life of Enoch up to the time of the Flood. The most interesting texts describe Enoch's journey to the ten heavens.
The 1st heaven is under the rulership of archangel Gabriel and being closest to earth it contains the winds and the clouds. Its inhabitants are angels that hold astronomical knowledge and rule the planets and stars as well as snow, ice, flowers and dew on Earth.
The 2nd heaven is Raphael's domain. It is a dark penal area where fallen angels, servitors to the Watchers, await the final judgment. They are darker than earthly darkness and are incessantly weeping for God's mercy. It's a sad scene.
The 3rd heaven, being a land of contrasts, is ruled by Anahel. The northern half of this heaven is an icey, sulphurous hell where wicked souls are being tortured by vengeful angels. They are the ones who dishonored God, practiced witchcraft or committed sins other against nature. The southern half of the 3rd heaven is a garden of Eden where the souls of the righteous are enjoying manna, the bread of angels.
The 4th heaven, held by archangel Michael, is shaped by rivers of milk, wine, honey and oil. This is where the ancient Temple of Jerusalem stands. The Tree of Life also stand in this heaven and this is where the Sun and the Moon start their journey across the firmament. Enoch beholds hoards of armed angelic soldiers incessantly singing their sweet songs and praising the Lord. There are armies of phoenixes and chalkydri pulling the chariot of the Sun.
The 5th heaven, being a fiery ravine, is the actual prison of the Watchers. They are held here along with their leader, Satanail (Satan). They create a touching and pitious atmosphere as they sing in unison.
The 6th heaven is home to seven scholarly angels whose task is to study the human race and its nature. These archangels govern the natural cycles of the seasons, the calendar, the waters of rivers and seas and so forth. They are the ones who harmonize heavenly and earthly existence. Apart form them, here are angels that record the lives and deeds of every human being. (They know about your little secret, and they told God too! *sighs*)
The 7th heaven is a scene of exceptional greatness. The higher orders of angels are all here - the Thrones, Cherubim, Seraphim, Origins, Authorities, Ophanim and Dominions, surrounded by fiery troops of archangels, are singing the praise of God.
The 8th heaven is where the "changer of the seasons, of drought, and of wet, and of the twelve signs of the zodiac" resides.
The 9th heaven is where the heavenly homes of the twelve signs of the zodiac are.
The 10th heaven is where Enoch beholds God's face. He is not very friendly-looking.
"like iron made to glow in fire, and brought out, emitting sparks, and it burns. Thus I saw the Lord's face, but the Lord's face is ineffable, marvelous, and very awful, and very very terrible."
No mention of tattoos is made.
God commands the angel Vrevoil, the most knowledgeable of angels, to reveal before Enoch all the cosmic secrets. He talks to Enoch for 30 days and 30 nights and during this time Enoch writes 366 books. (30 hubs in 30 days, huh?)
3 Enoch is called the Hebrew Apocalypse of Enoch or the Book of the Palaces (Sefer Hekalot). There is mo agreement in scholarly circles as to whether 3 Enoch was written in the 5th century C.E. or as late as the 15th century, but it is without doubt the most complex of the three works. 3 Enoch describes the journey of Rabbi Ishmael to the throne of God and the revelations made to him on the way by the angel Metatron (Enoch).
3 Enoch has four chapters. The first chapter tells Ishmael's ascension through the heavens and his participation in the Qedussah. The second chapter tells that Ishmael is Enoch and describes his translation. The third chapter gives an elaborate account of the hierarchies of angels, the activities of the heavenly court of law, and the performance of the angelic devotional song, the Qedussah. The fourth chapter is a tour of Heaven.