The Sea-Goat, the Goat, Capricorn [Middle English Capricorne, from Latin Capricornus : caper, capr-, goat + cornu, horn], which comes on the Meridian on September 20. It is second only to Cancer as the least visible constellation of the zodiac, Capricornus is perhaps the oldest constellation to have been recognized and note that it is the Day One of this book. Depictions of a goat, or of a goat-fish, have been found on Babylonian tablets around 3,000 years old (1000 B.C.) [Sumerian SUHUR.MASH, Akk. suhurmashu/i], and the origins of this figure may be prehistoric. Also the Sumerian Mashdagu, is the first month of the year, corresponding to Capricorn.
About 2,000 years ago the Sun reached its most southerly position in the sky -- that is, the winter solstice -- when it passed in front of this constellation at 23.5 degrees south of the celestial equator. This position thus came to be called the Tropic of Capricorn, a term still used today even though, because of the continuing precession of the equinoxes, the Sun is no longer in this constellation in midwinter. The winter solstice occurs about December 21, which is nearly coincident with the beginning of the astrological period known as Capricorn, on December 22.
Azazel (Heb. 'aza'zel, az-aw-zale', from Heb. 'ez, aze, from Heb. 'azaz, aw-zaz', to be stout, thus a she-goat (as strong), kid) a Biblical word of the Old Testament, the evil spirit in the wilderness to whom a scapegoat was sent on the Day of Atonement. In Islam it is one of the jinn [Hebrew ‘azazel, removal, scapegoat (ritually sent into the wilderness), perhaps originally a divine name]. The Islamic [Arabic] jinn is also called djinn which in the Moslem legend, was a spirit capable of assuming human or animal form and exercising supernatural influence over people. Some scholars see in the word the name of a personal being--a demon of the wilderness or a fallen angel who seduces people to evil (as in the Book of Enoch), or an epithet applied to the devil.
In the OT, atonement is expressed by the verb kaphar, whose root meaning is "to cover over." The noun related to this verb, kopher, is mainly used of the ransom price that "covers" and offense. The ritual of the Day of Atonement should be studied, and in particular the part played by the two goats (Lev. 16:15-17, 20-22). The high priest sprinkled the blood on the "atonement cover" (Heb. kapporeth).
Leviticus 16:7 And he shall take the two goats, and present them before the LORD at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.
16:8 And Aaron shall cast lots upon the two goats; one lot for the LORD, and the other lot for the scapegoat.
16:9 And Aaron shall bring the goat upon which the LORD's lot fell, and offer him for a sin offering.
16:10 But the goat, on which the lot fell to be the scapegoat, shall be presented alive before the LORD, to make an atonement with him, and to let him go for a scapegoat into the wilderness.
16:11 And Aaron shall bring the bullock of the sin offering, which is for himself, and shall make an atonement for himself, and for his house, and shall kill the bullock of the sin offering which is for himself:
Leviticus 16:16 And he shall make an atonement for the holy place, because of the uncleanness of the children of Israel, and because of their transgressions in all their sins: and so shall he do for the tabernacle of the congregation, that remaineth among them in the midst of their uncleanness.
The above verses describe the great holy and high day of atonement. We find the scapegoat that bears the sin of the people off into the wilderness, but the goat (the sin offering) which was taken by the high priest was slain, and its blood sprinkled upon the altar.
And so Christ is that great day of atonement. He is that great sin offering! He is the one who dies for us. Christ is both the Lamb of God and the Goat of God. From this dying goat, we also see a living fish. God’s people are as fishers of men.
John 1:28 These things were done in Bethabara beyond Jordan, where John was baptizing.
1:29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.
1:30 This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me.
1:31 And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water.
1:32 And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him.
1:33 And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.
1:34 And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God.
1:35 Again the next day after John stood, and two of his disciples;
1:36 And looking upon Jesus as he walked, he saith, Behold the Lamb of God!
1:37 And the two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus.
1:38 Then Jesus turned, and saw them following, and saith unto them, What seek ye? They said unto him, Rabbi, (which is to say, being interpreted, Master,) where dwellest thou?
1:39 He saith unto them, Come and see. They came and saw where he dwelt, and abode with him that day: for it was about the tenth hour.
1:40 One of the two which heard John speak, and followed him, was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother.
1:41 He first findeth his own brother Simon, and saith unto him, We have found the Messias, which is, being interpreted, the Christ.
Capricornus, The Sea Goat is a strange creature, the front half of which is a goat and the rear half a fish! The goat is in a fallen position with one leg doubled under his body; the head is bent forward and is in a dying situation. On the other hand the tail of the fish is vigorous and living. This represents Christ coming forth out of His death the living body of His Church--referred to as fishes.
The Hebrew name for the constellation Capricornus is Gedi, which means "A Kid; A Goat"; it also means "The Cut-Off"--- the meaning of atonement.
Ancient Sumerians believed these stars were associated with the god Ea, also called Oannnes, who brought culture and science from the sea to mankind. Ea or Enki, Oannes (god of the waters called Apsu, the Babylonian Abyss or the waters which surround and hold up the earth,- like the Greek’s idea of "Ocean," as in Space). Ea married the goddess Ninki or Damkina (Damgalnunna, also Ninkhursag) and their children were Marduk and Nanshe. Ea was depicted as a goat with a fish’s tail (The zodiac image of Capricornus) or in human form with water gushing from his shoulders or from a vase he carried (The zodiac image of Aquarius). Ea, of the "House of the water," god of sweet waters and wisdom, with his divine word was creator of mankind from clay with the help of the Sumerian goddess Aruru (see the Akkadian version of the Epic of Gilgamesh and the wild man Enkidu). Ea was also patron of all arts, and the chief god of the Mesopotamian city of Eridu. In ancient times the year began with the entrance of the Sun into the constellation of Aries, March 21, and ended in February, the name "Anno" (Medieval Latin : anno, in the year) was given in honor of Oannes, identified with Janus (Roman god of gates and doorways, depicted with two faces looking in opposite directions or past wisdom and future knowledge), who taught the Chaldeans science and the arts and warned them of the Flood. In Palestine Oannes (a Mesopotamian god of wisdom, part man and part fish) was under the name Dagon.
The Greek explanation of the Capricornus zodiacal sign:
one is the symbol represents the curved tail of the fish;
another is that the combination of the Greek letters the first two letters in the Greek word tragos, which means "goat."
Atonement in theology is an instance of reconciliation between God and human beings through the redemptive life and death of Jesus. The reconciliation of God and human beings brought about by Jesus, is the radical obedience and purification, exemplified in the life of Jesus, by which humanity finds oneness with God.
(Note this is a connection between Capricorn and Cancer in that Praesepe the Star Cluster is similar). According to some ancient myths, Capricornus was the Gate of the Gods, the portal in the sky through which the souls of mortals passed after they died. (Note: reference to Cancer).
Genesis 3:15 And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.
3:21 Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.
I found it amusing that out of the characters that circled the main constellations of the Zodiac in the Denderah Zodiac (see drawing shown in Chapter One) the figure below is the only one of its kind. It is positioned directly between Aquarius and Capricornus. What this symbol represents initially escaped me, but it does correlate with the beginning of Day One -- Capricornus and the End of the Twelfth Day -- Aquarius. Any constellations below these two are of minor consequences.
Some scholars have commented that the Denderah Zodiac begins at the constellation Virgo based on the symbol translation. I beg to differ with them, it begins with this symbol in context with this book.
After a little research among various avenues the following was the recommendations for the meaning of the symbol.
The Egyptian ideas about conditions prior to creation go back to the Pyramid Texts from the Old Kingdom, inscribed between 2400-2200 B.C., which proposed that the world emerged from a primeval darkness (keku semau) and a primeval flood (nun) that are indistinguishable from one another. Blended together they represent all that was prior to creation. This was a time when nothing existed, as it was an undifferentiated state.
From the book ‘IDEA INTO IMAGE,’ by E. Hornung, trans. E. Bredeck (New York, 1992) it is suggested that the symbol above is a picture of when the "One gave way to four pairs of primordial creatures, the Ogdoad, whose names indicate that they belong to the realm of the uncreated: primeval flood, hiddenness, endlessness, the undifferentiated ones. The sun emerges from the center of these beings, and as it rises for the first time it signals the beginning of the world."
The Hermopolis Ogdoad (Egyptian Khnum, Khnemu) was the Ram-headed god worshipped from the Archaic Period on, chiefly around Elephantine, the name Doudoun was associated also. Khnum means "eight" as in the modern place name of el-Ashmunein (Ashmun, Ashmunen).
The Ogdoad was a group of eight deities whom the priest at Hermopolis Magna, the principal cult of Thoth, associated with the creation myth. The Ogdoad comprised of four frog-gods and four snake-goddesses, paired and symbolizing aspects of the chaos before creation.
These eight deities brought into being the original Primeval Mound on which the egg of the sun-god was placed.
Khnum, (Khnemu) in Nubia there was a ram-god called Doudoun with whom Khnum may be associated. The Egyptians married Khnum to the goddess Heket, who was a frog.
The "Famine Stela" on the island of Sehel at the First Cataract from the second century B.C. tells how in the Third Dynasty, king Djoser assigned the Elephantine god Khnum a stretch of land to relieve a seven-year famine. The echo of the Joseph narrative in Genesis 41:29-30 is evident. Even Khnumhotep around 2000 B.C. had a visit from a Semitic party.
In Egypt, Khnum was god of fecundity and creation from the Cataract area. Originally a ram-god, his sanctuary was on Elephantine Island; a man with a ram’s head and wavy horns, that guarded the source of the Nile (life) and developed into a demiurge (creator) where he shaped the world on his potter’s wheel. Thoth (known as Hermes Trismegistus), the Egyptian god of the moon and of wisdom and learning, is shown marking his life span, while Khnum (Khnemu) is shaping his son on the potter’s wheel.
Anuket (Anqet, Anukis) with feather head-dress. The Egyptians tried to marry Khnum to the goddess Heket (Heqet), who was a frog, or a frog-headed woman, whose cult never got off the ground. Anuket was the divine wife of the god Khnum. She was associated with the Nile Cataracts, especially Aswan. Seheil and Elephantine Island were her favorites.
Thoth, (Tehuti, Thout, Djehuti, Zehuti) his name means "he of Djehut," which was a province in Lower Egypt. His cult centered at Hermopolis (Ashmunen). He was depicted as an ibis-headed man or as an ibis- or dog-headed ape; on his head he wore the combine lunar disc and crescent. His priest claim he created everything by sound of his voice alone. Thus the whole universe and its myriad dimensions of matter is a manifestation of infinite vibrations.
He was also called Hermes by the Greeks (Roman Mercury) and is the original of Hermes Trismegistus ("thrice greatest Hermes"), the mystical figure behind many arcane school of celestial philosophy.
Nun (Nu) Nux, who was the personification of the primeval waters from which everything arose, and from which the sun daily emerges, renewed and rejuvenated; hence Nun is "father of the gods." With his female counterpart, Naunet, he forms the first generation of the family group of eight gods (the Ogdoad of Hermopolis). Occasionally depicted in human form, he also assumes a frog’s head, drawing on his role as a fertility god. At the Oseiron at Abydos had a subterranean water channel to represent Nun. In Egypt he is the primal waters (annual inundation of the Nile) and source of life. As a bearded man waist high in water, from him sprang Ra. He is depicted holding aloft Manjet, the morning boat of the sun god Ra.
Ancient Egyptians believed that Nu, the god of waters, advised his son Ra, the sun god, to wholly destroy mankind when the nations revolted against the gods.
To the Greek, Nux, Night, the goddess sprang from Chaos, her offspring were Hypnos (sleep), Thanatos (death) and Phanes (light) who emerged from a vast egg formed by Nux and Ether (air) a goddess of children. Phanes and Nux later created Uranus (heaven) and Gaia (earth).
….. Another suggestion of the meaning of the symbol :
In a book written by Denon "Descriptions de l’Egypte" from 1908, which came from the Napoleon expedition to Egypt 1798-1802 when they found the Rosetta Stone. It states that the symbol and line drawing show that in the circle are eight men on their knees, with their heads chopped off, and their arms tied behind their backs, possibly representing the world of the enemies (as the classic image of foreign enemies).
The eight captives inside the large disk represent eight (actually 9 but traditionally seen as being 8) that could form the left-hand half of Capricornus. These figures do stand for the glyphic symbol of enemies or wickedness. These are Decan stars and the glyphs say Sa-r-a or a-r-sa, the figure to the left is also named sa-r-a (possible an indicator of epithet, title or a piece of time).
These stars can be easily identified since the experts have identified all the planets elsewhere within the circle. The only major constellation below and between Capricornus and Aquarius is Piscis Austrinus.
If the Eight figured star is indicative of Fomalhaut, the Egyptian connection is not noticeable for me.
Piscis Austrinus, The Southern Fish, appears on the Meridian on October 10. It has been occasionally shown as two fish, but it is more commonly seen as a single fish, sometimes drinking from a stream of water poured from the jar held by Aquarius, which lies just north of it. An older, but incorrect, form of its name is Piscis Australis. The Sumerians called this Enki’s Fish.
Recent reference to the fact that the large disk with the eight symbols inside are Decan stars. Therefore it is one of the 36 characters around the circle of the Denderah zodiac. So every ten degrees the stars identified by the glyph is reactive. E. C. Krupp states that the images around the perimeter are definitely decan stars only nobody knows which ones are which stars.
…. A third hypothesis of the meaning of the symbol:
There are two companies of gods associated with the Ben-ben, the mysterious object of Ra that was kept at his temple in the city of An (Heliopolis, Biblical On). They "are those who possess the mystery," guarding it inside the Het-Benben (The Ben-ben House); and eight who guard outside but also "enter unto the Hidden Object." Here there are also nine objects, set up in a row, representing the symbol Shem which hieroglyphically meant "Follower."
It is understand from the Pyramid Texts: that the secret object -- the Ben-ben -- was enshrined in the Het-Benben, the "Temple of the Benben." Which some believe was a vehicle or conveyance that came to earth, in which Ra himself landed: the term Ben (literally: "That Which Flowed Out").
Is this speculation associated with the symbol on the Denderah Zodiac? As you know my book presents this as the point that the Elohim came upon the earth Gen. 1:2. Also Sippar is called ("Bird Town") apparently it was the place where the Anunnaki came down to earth, and a city destroyed during the Deluge.
To see the Translation of the Zodiac of Denderah from Denon's book "Descriptions de l’Egypte".