Type of Spiritual Experience
‘Against Celsus’ is an attack by Origen on the Persian author Celsus who explained the Mysteries. Origen’s attack is the only record of Celsus’s description, as such it is about the only source we have of the ancient Persian mysteries
A description of the experience
Origen: Contra Celsum [translated by Henry Chadwick]
The teaching of the Persians and the mystery of Mithras [explains] the soul’s passage through [the fixed stars and the planets] …
There is a ladder with seven gates and at its top an eighth gate. The first of the gates is of lead, the second tin, the third of bronze, the fourth of iron, the fifth of an alloy, the sixth of silver and the seventh of gold.
They associate first with Kronos [Saturn], taking lead to refer to the slowness of the star; the second with Aphrodite [Venus] comparing her with the brightness and softness of tin; the third with Zeus [Jupiter], as the gate that has a bronze base and which is firm; the fourth with Hermes [Mercury] for both iron and hermes are reliable for all works and make money and are hard working; the fifth with Ares [Mars] the gate which as a result of the mixture is uneven and varied in quality; the sixth with the Moon as the silver gate and the seventh with the Sun as the golden gate, these metals resembling their colours
[Celsus] next examines the reason for this particular arrangement which is indicated by means of symbols in the names of the various kinds of matter. And he connects musical theories with the theology of the Persians which he describes.
The source of the experienceMysteries, the
Concepts, symbols and science items