Ahmehstrahan Counting

A Remarkable "Egyptian" Counting System


Raqia 1000

רָקֽיַע from Michael Lyon's reconstruction of the Shishaq Hypocephalus. “Appreciating Hypocephali as Works of Art and Faith”, FARMS Book of Abraham Lecture Series, 1999.


When the American Prophet Joseph Smith revealed the "Egyptian Counting" system in 1835, the curious characters had a familiar look to them. In appearance, they were certainly not the standard numerals of either hieroglyphic or hieratic Egyptian.

Hieroglyphic Egyptian numerals:

Hieroglyphic numerals

Hieratic (Priestly Script) Egyptian numerals:

Hieratic numerals

Here  are the numeric characters that the Prophet Joseph Smith revealed:

eh = 1 = "eh" = 1; ni = 2 = "ni" = 2; ze = 3 = "ze" = 3;

teh = 4 = "teh" = 4; veh = 5 = "veh" = 5;

psi = 6 = "psi" = 6; psa = 7 = "psa" = 7; a = 8 = "a" = 8;

na = 9 = "na" = 9; tah = 10 = "tah" =10

Compare the above prophetic symbols, with the Ghubari numerals of Northern Africa:

Ghubari numeral comparison

In the counting system revealed by Joseph Smith, the number 11, can be written eh = 1 tah = 10  eh = 1, pronounced "eh tah eh". The numerical description "eh tah eh" means one added to the product of ten and one (1 + 10x1). The numbers are apparently read left to right. The number after tah (on the right of tah) multiplies tah, while the number before tah (on the left of tah) is added to the product of tah. This exemplifies the basic tah rule.

The expression "eh tah eh" might appear trivial to you because the product of tah and eh is just tah (10). But its the principle and order in Joseph Smith's "Egyptian Counting" system that are important to understand here.

Of course the Prophet revealed that 11 is just "eh tah" = eh = 1 tah = 10,

but he also expressed the number 21 as "eh tah ni" = eh = 1 tah = 10 ni = 2. This is 1 + 10x2,

Like wise the Prophet revealed 33 as "ze tah ze" = ze = 3 tah = 10 ze = 3, which  is 3 + 10x3 etc.

Here we begin to see the strange but effective way of writing numbers using the tah rule.

The Tah Rule

Like standard Egyptian numbers, the "Egyptian Counting" system that Joseph Smith revealed is based on a scale of  ten. Joseph Smith's prophetic numbers are written in increasing powers of ten, going from left to right. This is in the opposite direction to how we usually write increasing powers of ten (in the radix 10, or decimal system) in common practice today.

The left to right, ten fold increases are consistent with standard Egyptian numbers which could be written in either direction.

There is no zero used as a place holder in the system Joseph Smith revealed. This is another thing that his revealed system has in common with standard Egyptian counting. Joseph Smith's prophetic numbers begin with 1, not 0.

Though it may appear to have a "mirror image" resemblance to the number 10, a better case can be made for the symbol tah = 10 being a combination of the ancient cross mark, "tav" Tav mark, "t"making a "t" sound, followed by the hieratic character hieratic sieve, "h" making an "h" like sound; thus literally spelling out the name "tah" hieratic sieve, "h"tav mark, "t" (read right to left). Note also the circular symbol correlating to the Hebrew "hey" (ה) in the Mashriki numeral list (above).

Anciently, the Hebrew letter "ayin" was depicted by a similar looking circular sign.

In time a North African counting system would evolve from letters. The evolving system would eventually include the numeral 0 as a placeholder. The symbolic representation 10 would be born. However, one might see in hieratic sieve, "h"Tav mark, "t" more of a resemblance to the Egyptian symbol for 0 (nephr = 0) than a resemblance to the relatively modern representation 10.

The Egyptian symbol nephr = 0 pronounced "nephr", by the way, resembles both a North American Mi'kmaq hieroglyph (Mi'kmaq hieroglyph) as well as a character ostensibly copied from the Book of Mormon plates (Book of Mormon character).

There are certainly resemblances between the symbols of Joseph Smith's "Egyptian" counting system and other ancient numeric symbols, but consider some apparent differences: Consider the symbols hieroglyphic 1000, hieratic 1000 representing 1000 in standard Egyptian. Compare these to the symbolAhmehstrahan 1000appearing in the Shishaq (Sheshonq) hypocephalus, and interpreted by Joseph Smith to be a "numerical figure, in Egyptian signifying one thousand ..." See Book of Abraham Facsimile No. 2, Fig. 4.

There is a simple explanation for the apparent differences between these counting systems. The  "Egyptians" associated with the Book of Abraham, were distinct from other Egyptians. In fact, according to Joseph Smith, they had a unique name, a name that even most Mormons have been ignorant of. These "Egyptians" were the "Ah meh strah ans".

While calling Ahmehstrahans, "Egyptians" was certainly acceptable for the Times & Seasons audience (mostly Mormon, the first to read the published Book of Abraham in the Church newspaper), this generalized description is not adequate for scholarly discussions. "Which Egyptians?" you ask, and its a good question.

Had the question been asked by more Mormons (LDS and RLDS - "Community of Christ") earlier, the answer given by Joseph Smith might have been better appreciated earlier, by more, in and outside the faiths.

In short, the Ahmehstrahans were a polyglot society who were the keepers of esoteric degrees relating to Abraham, his sacred story and his cosmological understandings. They were the custodians of at least one embellished and redacted version of the Sepher Avram, a work passed down from something personally written by Abram in Egypt upon papyrus. It is the revealed text of the Book of Abraham (not the facsimiles, and explanations) that relates to the Sepher Avram written by Avram. The revealed text is fundamentally Semitic.

The inspired, but anachronistic "Egyptian" trappings, translated and added by Joseph Smith, represent only parts "purporting to be the writings of Abraham, while he was in Egypt". (Times and Seasons newspaper, March 1, 1842) These inspired embellishments witness of Joseph Smith's prophetic connections, but they are not original to the more ancient Sepher Avram.

In Joseph Smith's Egyptian papers there is evidence that in addition to knowing Egyptian, the Ahmehstrahans of Ptolemaic times knew Hebrew and Greek, and probably many other languages,  including terminology purportedly known to the earliest inhabitants of our planet.

The Ahmehstrahans had a counting system better adapted for writing numbers much larger than those easily expressed in other ancient counting systems. 100,000,000 in Ahmehstrahan is "tah tah tah tah tah tah tah tah". If you think that is a lot of repetitive symbols to write, just consider trying to write a hundred million using the Egyptian hieroglyph for 1 million . This same symbol, by the way, is tied to the Hebrew letter "hey" (ה) which would eventually be set equal to five.

Evolution of the alphabet

The Prophet Joseph Smith revealed a sequence of numbers up to, and including the Ahmehstrahan representation of 79 = na = 9 tah = 10 psa = 7 = "na tah psa" = 9 + 10x7.

Inductive logic allows us to conclude how the Ahmehstrahans represented numbers 80 = tah = 10 a = 8 = "ta a" = 10x8,

through 99 = na = 9 tah = 10 na = 9 = "na tah na" = 9 + 10x9.

Notice again that the Ahmehstrahan names of numbers start with the left most numeral, and proceed to the right. A number immediately following tah (i.e. on the immediate right of tah) is understood to multiply tah. For example:

ni = 2 tah = 10 psa = 7 is named left to right, "ni tah psa". But in order to stress the fact that multiplication is performed before addition, the Prophet Joseph Smith explained "ni tah psa" as "Seven times ten and two" = 72. Thus "ni tah psa" (2 + 10x7) means 10x7 is performed before adding 2. Another clear example of the Ahmehstrahan tah rule.

But how would the Ahmehstrahans have represented 100, 110 ... 1000 ...?

Look at how the symbols for hieratic tens, hundred and thousands are economized. Instead of inventing an entirely different character for each multiple of 10, their are modifications of fewer basic characters. But even hieratic counting tends towards inventing new symbols for increasingly larger, or vanishingly smaller numbers.

Inspired by this idea of numerical economy, somebody realized a way (without using "nephr" nephr = 0, "zero" as a place holder) to represent increasingly greater numbers, while economizing on the use of no more than ten symbols.

It makes little sense to economize the use of symbols for numbers 1 through 99 using the tah rule, and not continue using the tah rule to economize on the representation of larger numbers, e.g. 100, 1000, 104, 105, 106, 107, 108, 109...

The Ahmehstrahan counting system is arguably more economical than standard Egyptian counting, especially at representing astronomically large numbers. In the evolution of North African counting systems, the Ahmehstrahan system approaches and stands just short of the decimal system in common use today.

Joseph Smith revealed enough that we can ascertain the tah rule's general application. Here is how the tah rule works in representing numbers greater than 99:

As demonstrated, the tah rule requires that tah is multiplied by the number immediately following it. The products of tau are then summed with other numerals in the written sequence. If there is no explicit numeral to the right of tah, we may assume an invisible "eh" on the right of tah. Case in point: "ni tah" = 2 + 10 = "ni tah eh" = 2 + 10x1 = 12. As Joseph Smith tacitly showed us, eh can be implied without being written. In other cases eh has to be written to avoid ambiguity.

It follows that

100 = tah = 10 tah = 10 ="ta ta" = 10x10,

110 = tah = 10 eh = 1 tah = 10 tah = 10 = "tah eh tah tah" = 10x1 + 10x10,

1000 = tah = 10 tah = 10 tah = 10 = "tah tah tah" = 10x10x10,

1010 = tah = 10 eh = 1 tah = 10 tah = 10 tah = 10 = "tah eh tah tah tah" = 10x1 + 1000.

Notice how ambiguity is avoided between the Ahmehstrahan representation of 110 and 1000.  The number eh is used as a multiplier of tah in the case of "tah eh tah tah" = 110. The eh after the first tah represents 10x1. The eh flags that the product of tah and tah are added to tah.

So this multiplication of tah and eh might seem trivial, but it serves a purpose. It signals that the product 10x1 is to be added to (not multiplied by) the "tah tah" that follows.  Without the eh factor acting as a flag, we would have "tah tah tah" which is 10x100 = 1000. Thus the number read immediately after tah is set apart as a factor multiplying tah. All other numbers are added together, including any multiples of tah. That is, consecutive sequences of tahs, unbroken by other numerals, are always multiplied together, e.g. "tah tah tah tah" = 10,000. All other numerals are added together, and added to any products or multiples of tah in the expression.

To better contrast Ahmehstrahan Counting with other systems of enumeration, consider the following  representations of the number 888:

Hieroglyphic Egyptian:

hieroglyphic 1hieroglyphic 1hieroglyphic 1hieroglyphic 1hieroglyphic 1hieroglyphic 1hieroglyphic 1hieroglyphic 1hieroglyphic 10hieroglyphic 10hieroglyphic 10hieroglyphic 10hieroglyphic 10hieroglyphic 10hieroglyphic 10hieroglyphic 10 hierglyphic 100hierglyphic 100hierglyphic 100hierglyphic 100hierglyphic 100hierglyphic 100hierglyphic 100

Hieratic Egyptian:

hieratic 8hieratic 80hieratic 800

Hebrew (Standard Method):


Hebrew (Gadol Method):


Greek (Isopsephy):

ΩΠΗ, ωπη

Now compare the above representations of 888 with the following representations of  888 in Ahmehstrahan Counting:

Prophetic Characters (read left to right):

a = 8  tah = 10 a = 8  tah = 10 tah = 10 a = 8 = "a tah a tah tah a"

= 8 + 10x8 + 10x10x8,

Hieratic Egyptian Characters:

hieratic 8 hieratic 80 hieratic 10hieratic 80

= 8 + 80 + 10x80

Hebrew Characters (read right to left):


= 10x80 + 80 + 8

Paleo ChetPaleo PehPaleo PehPaleo Yod

= 10x80 + 80 + 8

Sinai ChetSinai PehSinai PehSinai Yod

= 10x80 + 80 + 8;

Greek Characters (read left to right):

ΙΠΠΗ, ιππη

= 10x80 + 80 + 8

An important thing to see in these last examples, is that the Prophetic, Egyptian, Hebrew and Greek characters are all Ahmehstrahan expressions of 888, because they all employ the tah rule. It is the tah rule (not the symbols) that sets these numeric representations apart as Joseph Smith "Egyptian", a.k.a  Ahmehstrahan.

It is possible that the Ahmehstrahans made alphanumeric use of various "alphabets", which up until Ptolemaic times had not been correlated with numbers. See Ed Goble, "The Greco-Roman Egyptian Alpha-Numerals Theory, or the “Ahmestrahan” Numerals".

Ahmehstrahan Gematria

There are different alphanumeric systems (using letters to represent numbers) including different methods of Greek Isopsephy and Hebrew Gematria. It may be that individuals, and groups like the Ahmehstranans in Ptolemaic times, were among the first to extend Greek alphanumeric ideas to other languages like Hebrew. It shouldn't surprise us that the multilingual Ahmehstranans would have devised their own alphanumeric methods based on their own counting system, involving the tah rule.

To properly interpret, the Ahmehstrahan way, Fig. 4. of Book of Abraham Facsimile No. 2 (Hypocephalus of Shishaq (Sheshonq) שִׁישַׁק), we should replace the word "Egyptian" with the strange, but more accurate word "Ahmehstrahan". We should also replace the Western Sephardic transliteration "Raukeeyang" (which reflects Joseph Smith's unique Hebrew training by J. Seixas); a word meaning "expanse, or the firmament", with a more recognized transliteration. Thus we may read:

"Fig. 4. Answers to the Hebrew word Raqia, signifying expanse, or the firmament of the heavens; also a numerical figure in Ahmehstrahan signifying one thousand ..."

The Hebrew word translated "firmament" (Bereshit (Gen.) 1:6) and pronounced "raqia", is spelled (right to left) רָקֽיַע. According to Standard Hebrew Gematria the letter spelling the word "raqia" have the following numerical equivalents:

200 = ר

100 = ק

10 = י

70 = ע

In standard Hebrew Gematria the word "raqia" is numerically equivalent  to 200 + 100 + 10 + 70 = 380.

In the Mispar Katan Method, the letter "raysh" (ר) is set equal to the number 2 (same as the numerical value of the letter "bet" ב), the letters "qoof" (ק) and "yod" (י) are set equal to 1 (same as the numerical value of the letter "aleph" א), and the letter "ayin" (ע) is set equal to the number 7 (same as the numerical value of the letter "zayin" ז). Using this method, "raqia" adds to 11 = 2 + 1 + 1 + 7.

Using the Ordinal Value Method, "raysh" (ר) is set equal to the number 20, the letter "qoof" (ק) is set equal to 19, "yod" (י) is kept at 10, but "ayin" (ע) is set equal to 16. So using this method, "raqia" represents 65 = 20 + 19 + 10 +16.

There are several other Hebrew Gematria Meathods which yield different numeric results for the word רָקֽיַע.

But lets consider the Ahmehstrahan method which is distinguished, not by different symbols, or different alphanumeric equivalents (the alphanumeric correlations are the same as in standard Hebrew Gematria), but by the use of the tah rule. Of course we need to recognize that Hebrew letters are read right to left.

Thus in Ahmehstrahan, the "yod" is numerically equivalent to "tah", so "Raqia" (רקיע) is 200 + 100 + 10x70 = 1000.

This is so because "ayin" (70) follows "yod" (10) and therefore multiplies 10, according to the tah rule revealed by Joseph Smith

Thus the Egyptian symbol Ahmehstrahan 1000, which Ahmehstrahans interpreted as "Raqia" (רקיע), is numerically equivalent to 1000.

Ahmehstrahan 1000is not a symbol commonly used in ancient Egyptian counting practice. Neither does the symbol appear in Joseph Smith's delineation of the Ahmehstrahan counting system. This symbol is tied to the number 1000 by way of alphanumeric equivalency. The Hebrew word associated with this symbol should not be considered as the only possible instance of a word yielding the number 1000 when Ahmehstrahan Gematria is applied.

Barge with Lotus Prow

Egyptian funeral barges with lotus decor and  symbolic lotus prows. In Egyptian, the lotus signifies the resurrecting sun (Mal'akhi (Mal.) 3:20; 4:2 KJV), and the  number 1000. Fig. 4 of Book of Abraham Facsimile No. 2 should probably not be interpreted as a ship of a thousand cubits. A single cubit correlates to a thousand years according to Fig. 1. (Kolob, Grammar and Alphabet of the Egyptian Language (1835), Second Part, 5th Degree, pg. 26) A thousand cubits would therefore represents one million years. Fig. 4 may simply call to mind a ship with a lotus prow. It is the symbol of the lotus that ties to 1000.

With this introduction into the curious gematria of the Ahmehstrahans  one may wonder if similar methodology could unlock the mystery of Book of Abraham Facsimile No. 2, Fig. 11.

The 1842 Times & Seasons explanation reads, "Fig. 11 ... If the world can find out these numbers, So let it be. Amen."

Fig. 11, Shishaq Hypocephalus

Figure 11 relative to "Raqia" (Figure 4), Shishaq Hypocephalus. (M. Lyons, "Appreciating Hypocephali as Works of Art and Faith”, FARMS Book of Abraham Lecture Series, 1999)

The string of characters are read right to left, top to bottom. The stroke(s) that is interpreted by some as a folded cloth or seat-backing hieroglyph seat-backing (following the recumbent one on the mummification couch), is alternately interpreted by other scholars to represent three vertical strokes (i.e. the number 3).

The hieroglyphic line (rewritten left to right):

Fig. 11 characters

Transliteration (left to right): "i ntr sdr.w m sp"

Translation: “O God of the Sleeping Ones from the time of [the creation]”. (Michael D. Rhodes, “The Joseph Smith Hypocephalus … Twenty Years Later”, pp. 4-5)

The only obvious Egyptian number in this line is represented by the three vertical stoke hieroglyphic 1 signs denoting either the number three, plurality or multiplicity. In the translation above, the vertical strokes make "Sleeping one" plural;  "Sleeping [Dead] ones".

Alternately, professor of Egyptology Robert K. Ritner transliterates Fig. 11 of the "Hypocephalus of Sheshonq" as follows: "i ntr sps m sp", which translates, "O noble god from the beginning of time..." Evidently, Professor Ritner sees the symbols differently. (Ritner, The Joseph Smith Egyptian Papyri - A COMPLETE EDITION, pg. 272)

We do not have the Shishaq Hypocephalus original. Only amateur copies are known to exist. To identify and interpret the symbols of Fig. 11, Egyptian scholars have only the following copies to depend on (and other hypocephali):

Fig. 11 notebook copy

Shishaq Hypocephalus Fig. 11 Notebook Copy. Note the missing (overlooked), or conflated "vertical strokes" that should be on the left of the mummification couch.


Fig. 11 published copy

Shishaq Hypocephalus Fig. 11 Published Copy. Note that the stroke like character on the left of the couch better resembles vertical strokes than a folded cloth.

LDS scholar Ed Goble refers to the Fig. 11 interpretation in Hugh Nibley's One Eternal Round, pg. 327; which agrees with the interpretation of Michael Rhodes (above). This is the preferred interpretation.

Transtextual Correlation with the Revelation of Yohanan

Neither the Shishaq Book of the Dead Hypocephalus, or hypocephali in general, date to the time of Avraham. There is no mention of a hypocephalus in the text of the Book of Abraham, and there certainly was no Book of the Dead hypocephalus accompanying the original Sepher Avram "written by his own hand, upon papyrus." Hypocephali, like Facsimile No. 2, didn't exist then!

Guided by inspiration, Joseph Smith redacted, and "Abramized" the Shishaq Hypocephalus to become Book of Abraham Facsimile No. 2. Transtextual correlations have been shown to exist between characters of the redacted hypocephalus and the Abram account. In place of missing text (lacunae), the Prophet Joseph Smith substituted hieratic characters from a Book of Breathings (a separate funerary scroll). These and other characters relate to the Abram story in esoteric ways. (Esoteric Egyptian in Facsimile No. 2)

No written work is the result of a single author, in that all written works draw to some degree, either directly or indirectly, on the words, ideas or influence of others. Therefore transtextual correlations exist between texts. This is true even for literary works greatly separated in time.

Sacred and revered texts in particular may manifest transcendental authorship - the influence of higher guiding intelligence.

There is no reason to believe that a hypocephalus, revered by Egyptians, would only connect transtextually with the Book of Abram. Might not a Hypocephalus also have transtextual connections with other sacred texts? This may be especially true if the texts were inspired to some degree by the same higher, guiding intelligence?  (3 Nephi 27:26)

Oh, but pagan hypocephali contain symbols offensive to the sensibilities of "descent people"! Joseph Smiths Book of the Dead hypocephalus certainly has its share of "offensive" symbols. How could such a work possibly be inspired by the same source as the Bible? This of course begs the question, as to whether of not  "descent people" have actually read all the Bible? "Descent people" might consider the Apostle Paul's willingness to attribute to certain pagan poets the inspired understanding that "we are the offspring of God [gods]". (Acts 17:28-29, KJV)

Consider again the restored hieroglyphic characters which Joseph Smith called "Fig. 11":

Fig. 11 characters

The Prophet said of these characters, "Fig. 11 ... If the world can find out these numbers, So let it be. Amen." Of course the only obvious Egyptian "numbers" in this line of text are the three vertical strokes 3 vertical strokes, amounting to the number three, but in this case denoting plurality.

There is, however, among these symbols a different category of hieroglyph (different than the category of the stroke signs) that Ed Goble calls our attentions to. Ed points out the Egyptian "uniliterals", which essentially act as letters. Ed cogently shows that the Ahmehstrahans could have directly equated the uniliteral characters (in Fig. 11) to Greek letters, with their associated numeric values. The Ptolemaic Ahmehstrahans may have been among the first to extend this alphanumeric idea to Hebrew letters.

In scripture, Gematria makes its debut in the New Testament. Both the Hebrew book of Matti (Matthew) and the book of Revelation feature examples of gematria. Ed Goble points out (as do Hebrew Lexicons) that there is no clear evidence that the human writers of the Holy Tenakh used the aleph-bet as numbers.

It just so happens that in the case of Fig. 11, the Egyptian uniliteral hieroglyphs (which accord with Greek letters/numbers), also agree with their numeric equivalents in Standard Hebrew Gematria. This is not always the case. But in the case of Fig. 11, the letters and numbers of all three "alphabets" align and agree. (Ed Goble, "The Greco-Roman Egyptian Alpha-Numerals Theory, or the “Ahmestrahan” Numerals")

Here are the four Egyptian uniliterals in Fig. 11 correlated to their Greek, Hebrew and numeric values:

"bolt" = door bolt (s, z) ≈ Ζ, ζז = Seven (7)

"reed" = reed(i) ≈ Ι, ι י = Ten (10)

"mulak (owl)" = owl, mulak (m) ≈ Μ, μ מם = Forty (40)

"stool, stand" = stool or mat(p) ≈ Π, π פף = Eighty (80)

Fig. 11 numbers

How does Ahmehstrahan Gematria apply to these letters/numbers? It is important to note that the letter/number reed(i) = 10 is set apart from all other uniliterals in Fig. 11. In other words the letter that represents the number 10 (tah) is not multiplied by door bolt (s, z) = 7, because reed is several characters removed. All of the uniliterals may then be added together.  The uniliteral sum total is 144.

These four Ahmehstrahan uniliterals are a special set of characters. In fact,  reed may be seen as the first letter spelling the sacred Tetragrammaton, the name of the Eternal.

GOD or El (אל) is represented by the symbols

El . Note the temple banner (, standing for "divine") placed before the seated Deity.

The four Ahmehstrahan uniliterals (number/letters) in Fig. 11 are, in order of the text:

Yod uniliteral

Zayin uniliteral

Mem uniliteral

Peh uniliteral

What of the other characters, the ones that are not represented as single letters? They help tell a story which gives context to the Ahmehstrahan letters/numbers.

To guide us in knowing what to look for, and in reording the symbols, we should first ask the question: 144 what? Ah, of course! "... an hundred and forty and four thousand ..." (Revelation 7:4, KJV)

The Hebrew word for 1000 is "eleph", the plural of which is "alaphim" (אֲלָפִים); as seen in Shemot (Ex.) 18:21, 25. So of course GOD, and the uniliterals of Fig. 11 spell out "thousands" in Hebrew:

144 Alaphim We may then interpret:

"144 thousands of the livingman with hand to mouth, and the deadsleeping ones, who are sealed up seal, at the time of the threshingtemporal event, and the opening seal." (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 77:7, 11)

But there is more to see in the symbols of Fig. 11. For more, let's restore the symbols to the order in which they read in the hypocephalus (only reversed, so we read them left to right in gentile fashion):

Fig. 11 Apocalypse

"The handSinai Yod, and (vav, nail, ו) wordman with hand to mouth of GodGod (El) (El), first to open the bandsseal of deathdeath; who sends his messenger(s)3 vertical strokesowl, mulak to proclaim the words of his mouthSinai Peh (peh), at the time of the threshingtemporal event, and the opening seal."

Commentary on the above Apocalypse of Yohanan interpretation of Fig. 11:

reed is an Egyptian symbol that can be transliterated as the letter "i". It is easy to see how the Ptolemaic Ahmehstrahans could have equated this uniliteral to the Greek letter "iota" (Ι, ι), which was long ago set equal to 10. The Ptolemaic Ahmehstrahans had their own symbol, and esoteric meaning associated with "Iota - The eye, or I see". This they represented with a single pupil like dot •. (E.g. Ahmehstrahan 1st Degree, pg. 21) The symbol calls to mind the scriptural "apple of his eye".

The Hebrew equivalent of reed (Ι) is the letter "yod" (י) which means "hand". Anciently it was represented by the extended hand or forearmSinai Yod. The Greek translation of the name of the Prophet foretold by Mosheh (his messianic successor, Devarim (Deut.) 18:15), is spelled with an Iota (Ιησούς = 10 + 8 + 200 + 70 + 400 + 200 = 888, Hebrews 4:8).

Spelled with a "yod", this is the name "Yehoshua" (יהושע) meaning The Eternal is Salvation (Yeshua).

The name contains the three distinct letters (ancient symbols) spelling the sacred Tetragrammaton: a hand Yod (י), a person with upraised armsHey (ה), and a nail Vav, Nail (ו). (Yesha'Yahu (Is.) 44:6, Revelation 1:8)

Thus we see that "Yehoshua" literally came in his Father's name. (ST John 5:43)

There are no true Gods (GOD) of the universe other than the Eternal Elohim. (Yesha'Yahu (Is.) 63:16, Bereshit (Gen.) 3:22, Tehilim (Ps.) 110:1-6) The Eternal Elohim are one: ∞ + ∞ + ∞ = ∞. (ST John 17:20-23)

"A bruised [cracked] reed shall he not break ..." describes the messianic servant. (Yesha'Yahu (Is.) 42:3) Consider then, the ironic words of Ravshaqe messenger of the king of Ashur, who trusted not in the Eternal Elohim: "Lo, thou trustest in the staff of this broken [cracked] reed, on Egypt, whereon if a man lean, it will go into his hand, and pierce it ..." (Yesha'Yahu (Is.) 36:6) The Egyptian reed reedin Fig. 11 may then be seen to suggest a pierced handYod.

man with hand to mouth represents activities of the living via "hand to mouth" e.g. loving, thinking, telling, speaking, feeling, partaking of bread and wine.

The Hebrew word "davar" (דבר) not only means "word", but "thing". The word consist of the letter "dalet" (ד, Sinai Dalet), meaning "door" combined with the word "bar" (בר) meaning "son", "pure, clean, innocent". See ST John 10:9, and prophetic wordplay in Tehilah (Ps.) 2:12, Revelation 19:13. See also Yesha'Yahu (Is.) 55:9-11.

God (El)represents "El", a divine title which applies to both the Eternal Father and to his chosen, anointed Son(s). (Yesha'Yahu (Is.) 7:14, 9:6; 45:11, Tehilim (Ps.) 95:3; 89:20-29; 82:6-7, Revelation 3:12; 21-22; 21:7)

seal is an Egyptian symbol that can be transliterated as the letter "s" or "z". It is easy to see how the Ptolemaic Ahmehstrahans could have equated this uniliteral to the Greek letter "zeta" (Ζ, ζ), which was long ago set equal to 7. One may even imagine Joseph Smith's prophetic symbol for 7 psa = 7, "psa", in "zeta" (Ζ, ζ), or see "psa" as a bent "zayin" (ז). The Ptolemaic Ahmehstrahans probably did not pronounce the "p" in "psa". This fits with the sound that seal makes.

The Hebrew equivalent of seal is the letter "zayin" (ז) which has an "abundance, fullness", "ziz" (זִיז) of meaning. (Yesha'Yahu (Is.) 66:10-11)

The Egyptian door bolt hieroglyphseal suggests to the mind that which can be closed or sealed, loosed or opened, as in the closing or opening of a doorSinai Dalet. This calls to mind the word "zer" (זֵר) meaning, circlet, ring, i.e. that which binds. "Zer" also means border, or crown. Another appropriate word is "zeq" (זֵק) meaning, fetter, chain, binding, fastening, i.e. Yesha'Yahu (Is.) 45:14.

seal is the only uniliteral character that appears twice in Fig. 11. Taken as a pair seal + seal =  ζ + ζ = ז + ז = 7 + 7 = Fourteen (14). This is a most significant number in Hebrew Gematria, because it happens to be the numerical value of the messianic name "David" (דָוִד), meaning Beloved. (YehezqEl (Ezek.) 34:23-24, Matthew 3:17) Here "dalet" (ד), "the door"Sinai Dalet = 4 is on either side of the "vav" (ו), "the nail"vav, nail = 6. Thus the name  "David" = 4 + 6 + 4 = 14.

In the words of the prophetic poet Yesha'Yahu:

"And the key of the house of David will I lay upon his shoulder; so he shall open, and none shall shut; and he shall shut, and none shall open.

And I will fasten him as a nail in a sure place; and he shall be for a glorious throne to his father’s house." (Yesha'Yahu (Is.) 22:22-23)

This fits Revelation 4:1; 5:5; 22:16.

Gematria relating to the name "David" is seen in chapter 1 of the Gospel According to Matthew. Here the Jewish disciple davides the genealogy of Yoseph (the surrogate father of Yeshua) into three sets of fourteen generations each; from Avraham to David, from David to the Babylonian captivity, and from the Babylonian captivity to Yeshua. (Matthew 1:17, KJV)

Note that 3x14 = 42. Forty-two is divisible by ו = six, and ז = seven. The number 7 is interpreted to represent "perfection". The number 6 in gematria is customarily associative with man and beast. It happens that seal can also represent "man" in Egyptian. So if we combine this meaning with the perfection of ז = seven (Hebrew Gematria) we have man of perfection. Mortal Yeshua, however, did not consider himself "perfected", like his Eternal Father, until after "the third day". (Luke 13:32, KJV)

Unfortunately, there is a mistake in the gentile translation of Matthew chapter 1.  A name is missing in the last list of "fourteen generations", so the King James Bible lists only thirteen names in the last set. The name "Abner" (Avner son of Av'ihud) is missing in verse 13. Avner was the father of Elyakim.  The missing name is present in B'sorot Matti (Hebrew Gospel of Matthew).

seal above death or breaking the bands of death may be interpreted to represent the bands of death. But the Eternal hath said, "Thy dead men shall live, together with my dead body shall they arise. Awake and sing ye that dwell in the dust ..." (Yesha'Yahu (Is.) 26:19) This accords with Revelation 1:18.

With seal equivalent to ז above the recumbent body, we may think of words like "zaqaph" (ְזָקַף), "raise up", "zarah" (זָרַח), "rise", "come forth", "zerah", "shining as the dawn"! We may see the word "zevah" (זֶבַח), "sacrifice" above the recumbent body, and the word "zaval" (זָבַל), "exalt", "honor", and "zeved" (זֶבֶד), "endowment"...

3 vertical strokesfollows seal and death, and may suggest to the mind three days, "the third day", the unified plurality of the Elohim, or it may be interpreted to mean three (or a plurality of) messengers owl, mulak. (Revelation 1:20; 22:16)

In any event,breaking the bands of death3 vertical strokes is at the center of Fig. 11, as if he represents the central shaft of the prophetic Menorah. (Revelation 1:13) This being the case, the "zayin" above the recumbent body, may bring to mind "zayit" (זַיֽת) which implies both olive, olive tree, and olive oil in reference to the Anointed, ha-Meshiah.

Unto what is he anointed? "...to preach good tidings unto the meek, ... to bind up the broken hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound..." (Yesha'Yahu (Is.) 61:1)

The root of the Hebrew word translated "bound" is "asar" (ְאָסַר). The word "asir" (אָסִיר) means "prisoner". Here we may see a play on words with the name of the resurrected god of the netherworld; implied in the symbol breaking the bands of death. (Tehilim (Ps.) 107:14)

owl, mulak is the Egyptian "owl", "mulak" hieroglyph, transliterated "m". It is easy to see how the Ptolemaic Ahmehstrahans could have equated this uniliteral to the Greek letter "mu" (Μ, μ), which was long ago set equal to 40. The Egyptian word "mulak" sounds very much like the Hebrew word "malakh" (מַלְאָךְ) meaning "messenger", but typically translated "angel" in gentile Bibles. This symbol fits the Apocalypse. E.g. Revelation 22:16.

stool or mat is the Egyptian "stool", "stand" hieroglyph, transliterated "p". It is easy to see how the Ptolemaic Ahmehstrahans could have equated this uniliteral to the Greek letter "pi" (Π, π), which was long ago set equal to 80.

The Hebrew equivalent of stool or mat (π) is the letter "peh" (פ, ף) which means "mouth". Anciently it was represented as Sinai Peh. Revelation 1:16 is a fitting inference from the first chapter of Revelation, but there may be another transtextual connection here, with the second to last chapter of Revelation. stool or mat may suggest to the mind the "foursquare" city Yerushalayim ha-Hadashah coming down from ha-Shamayim (the Heavens). Revelation 21:2; 21:16. Here we see in the Revelation of Yohanan the Greek word for "city" (πόλιν) appropriately spelled with the letter pi (π). More expressly we read, "πόλις τετράγωνος", "city four-square"; her very architecture bespeaking the sacred Tetragrammaton.

temporal event finally, is the Egyptian "threshing floor" symbol for "time" or "event". The door bolt seal standing for ז, and the number 7, above the "event"temporal event, also brings to mind the Hebrew word "z'man" (זְמָן), "appointed time". (Revelation 22:10)

Thus, finding numerical apocalyptic meanings in Fig. 11 is not like trying to read a sealed book. Fig. 11 is, as the Prophet Joseph Smith suggests, open to the world, should the world seek to understand it. All that is needed to appreciate the message is eyes that will see •, and ears that will hear, and hearts that will understand. (Revelation 3:21-22)

Is There Really a Raqia, "Firmament"?

A verse from Hebrew scripture, may have something to do with the reasons the Amehstrahans chose to relate the winged Egyptian deity and the sky ship to the Hebrew word for "expanse" or "firmament", "raqia" (רקיע):

 Ahmehstrahan 1000

open firmament of heaven

"Raqia" literally means "an extended surface, (solid) expanse". the word is related to the verb "raqa" meaning to "beat, stamp, beat out, spread out" as in the beating out of thin gold plates. (Shemot (Ex.) 39:3)

The ancient Hebrews had a spread out, solid vault, or domelike expansion in mind. (Iyov (Job) 37:18) They believed a vast vault overspread earth's sky, and divided, or bound primordial waters beyond the solid expansion, from the waters and atmosphere below the expanse. (Bereshit (Gen.) 1:6-8) Thus a more than poetic connection was perceived between the waters "ha-mayim" (המים) and local heaven(s) "shamayim" (שׁמים).

The Ahmehstrahans certainly saw this connection between bounded "waters" and the firmament of "the heavens". The "Raqeeyang" (Raqia) of heaven was supported by pillars of papyrus in the Egyptian tradition. See Iyov (Job) 26:10-11. Hence the interpretations of "Fig. 11. ... 12. ... Signifying expanse, or the firmament over our heads ... Shaumahyeem [שׁמים]" in relation to  waters ironically depicted underfoot in the Book of Breathings vignette adapted as Book of Abraham Facsimile No. 1.

Air and water are implied in the Shishaq Hypocephalus symbol Ahmehstrahan 1000.

Not only do fowls spread out there wings in flight before earth's raqia, but the raqia spreads out as with wings in flight. What then is the raqia? Earth's comparatively thin, turbulent film of atmosphere to be sure, but is there something more?

The priest and prophet YehezqEl saw in vision a flying raqia spread out above the outstretched wings of keruvim, accompanied by dynamic wheels within wheels full of eyes.  The mortal YehezqEl did his best to describe a heavenly merkavah, or chariot transporting the true God, who in appearance was seen like "Adam" (אָדָם, mankind). (YehezqEl (Ezek.) 1:22-26).

What YehezqEl saw was not an Aristotelian deity ruling from an empyrean in absolute space, but rather, the God of Yeshurun who sets a throne atop a thing in relative motion. (Devarim (Deut.) 33:26, Tehilim (Ps.) 18:9-11) The heavens are not stationary but move with respect to other things.

Relative motion is implied in the Shishaq Hypocephalus symbol Ahmehstrahan 1000.

Just as the Hebrew word translated "Heaven" is really plural ("Shamayim", "Heavens") so we might expect there to be more than one "Raqia" in relative motion. But are there really dome like vaults in the skies?

Consider the magnetosphere of the earth. The planet's magnetosphere spreads out into space, dome like, yet wing like, to regions far beyond earth's atmosphere. (Yesha'Yahu (Is.) 42:5) The magnetic field of the planet surrounds the planet, yet impinges on the planet near her poles. Within the earth's magnetic fields are belts (more than one) of energetic, circulating charges. These charged belts (the outer composed mostly of electrons, the inner of protons) are called the Van Allen radiation belts.


"The earth rolls upon her wings, and the sun giveth his light by day, and the moon giveth her light by night, and the stars also give their light, as they roll upon their wings in their glory, in the midst of the power of God." (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 88:45)

Outer space is not as empty as you might think. Beyond the Van Allen radiation belts are harsh effluences of space composed of streams of charged particles and other forms of radiation. The primordial "waters" of outer space are plasmas, e.g. the solar wind, coronal mass ejections, various forms of "space weather". Earth's "Raqia", her magnetosphere, acts as if it were a solid shield, blocking, and dividing the cosmic "waters" (cosmic streams of particles). Relative to these outer effluences, the Raqia surrounding the earth is so "solid" that it creates a "bow shock" like the bow of a ship plowing through seas.

So does the earth really have a Raqia? Does the earth really have wings? Not only the earth, but countless other cosmic creations.

Galactic Raqia and Fiery Pillar

Raqia and Fiery Pillar of a Galactic Temple

Consider the similarities between Ahmehstrahan 1000, which is tied to one thousand (i.e. "a thousand years"), and the standard Egyptian symbol representing one million. Both feature outstretched extremities.

A Hebrew word for extremities, "kenaphayim" (כְּנָפַיִם) is translated "wings". (Mal'akhi (Mal.) 3:20; 4:2 KJV)

The symbol Ahmehstrahan 1000, as has been demonstrated, is tied to 1000 through Ahmehstrahan alphanumeric equivalency of the Hebrew word for "firmament". This symbol is also tacitly tied to 1000 by way of the lotus prow. The two dimensional side view representation Ahmehstrahan 1000, could have brought to the Egyptian mind the fact that a ship with a lotus prow, viewed head on, physically portrays the symbol for 1000, hieroglyphic 1000. Even though this is not explicitly imaged in the sky ship side view, the lotus prow connection could easily reflect common Egyptian perception.

But if Ahmehstrahan 1000= 1000, also signifies earth's local "firmament", including the atmosphere wherein birds fly (Bereshit (Gen.) 1:20), what heavenly significance does = 1,000,000 have?

Mathematics historian and author, Georges Ifrah in his work The Universal History of Numbers, states:

"The hieroglyphic numeral for 1,000,000 might more plausibly be ascribed a psychological origin. The Egyptologists who first interpreted this sign thought that it expressed the awe of a man confronted with such a large number. In fact, later research showed that the sign (which also means "a million years" and hence "eternity") represented in the eyes of the Ancient Egyptians a genie holding up the vault of heaven. The pictogram's distant origin lies perhaps in some priest or astronomer looking up to the night sky and taking stock of the vast multitude of its stars." (pg. 168)

Joseph Smith's Ahmehstrahans, like the ancient Hebrews, understood there to be more than one heaven. There is not only earth's "firmament" Ahmehstrahan 1000, but a "heaven of heavens" , spanned by the MAN (ְהאדם) whose name is spelled with two Hey. (1 Melakhim (1 Kgs.) 8:27, Devarim (Duet.) 10:14, Yesha'Yahu (Is.) 40:12)

The standard Egyptian symbol, appears to be tied to the following Ahmehstrahan symbols: "Ebeth-ku-ain-tri-eth" Ebeth-ku-ain-tri-eth, which signifies "All the heavenly bodies = Eternity"; "Ebeth-ka" Ebeth-ka "The heaven of heavens where God resides ..."; and "Ho-hah-oop" Ho-hah-oop, "An intercessor, one who has been appointed to intercede for another; invocation". See also "Egyptian [Ahmehstrahan] Alphabet", handwriting of Oliver Cowdery (scribe to Joseph Smith), 1835. The "E" in "Ebeth..." as also the "H" in "Ho-hah-oop" may all relate to the Hebrew letter "hey".

Avraham and the Tah Rule

LDS scholar Ed Goble's discovery that the rope coil can be linguistically tied to "Abram" (Ahmehstrahan "Ah-broam") has proven fruitful in correlating characters from the Joseph Smith papyri to  the Abram in Egypt account.

As previously shown, the Egyptian rope coil represents 100.

Just as Avram was about to reach 100 years of age, the Eternal (Endless is his name) appeared to Avram and said that he would "multiply" him (Avram). As part of this promise, the Eternal took a letter "hey" (Hey) from his own name and placed this letter in "Avram", making "Avraham". (Bereshit (Gen.) 17:1-2, 5) What is more, the Eternal replaced the "yod" (Yod) in "Sarai" with a second "hey" from his name; so that "Abraham" and "Sarah" (Princess, Goddess, daughter of GOD) eternally joined together Hey +Hey = Yod = 10, made up for the "yod" that alone was removed from "Sarai". (Yesha'Yahu (Is.) 51:1-2) Instead of the + sign, recall that "vav", the sign of the "nail" (Vav, Nail), joins things together in Hebrew. (Bereshit (Gen.) 2:24) Thus Abraham and Sarah (by simple equation) relate the sacred name placed upon them.

The Ptolemaic Ahmehstrahans may well have perceived a similarity between the post exilic Hebrew letter "hey" (ה) and the Egyptian symbol for 10 (Heel 10). It happens that the Egyptian "heel" sign Heel 10, also relates to the meaning of Avraham's promised seed, Ya'aqov who would grind the serpent's head. So since the Eternal said that he would multiply Avram (100), and in so doing placed a "hey" (Egyptian look alike for 10) in Avram's name; the Ahmehstahans, whose hearts were turned to Adonai the Eternal, naturally took this to mean that the rope coil (100) should be multiplied by the number 10 (hey lookalike). Thus the Ahmehstrahan tah rule was born. And thus "Avraham" (at least in Egypt) came to be associated with the lotus bouquet (1000), for  Heel 10 x = hieroglyphic 1000.

We have seen that the ancient characters hieratic sieve, "h"Tav mark, "t" actually spell "tah", approximating the name of the Ahmehstrahan number. But why would the Ahmehstrahans have called their tenth digit by this name? Could "tah" be both a play on words with the name of the Egyptian creator god "Ptah", and a substitute for the abbreviated name of the Eternal, Yah, HeyYod, יה?

The sacred name is spelled with the 10th letter of the Hebrew aleph-bet Yod, י. The Ahmehstrahans associated the four quarters symbol four quarters of the earth with the sacred Tetragrammaton. The "tah" symbol contains the same elements.  Thus the Ahmehstrahans seem to have succeeded in both communicating a correct pronunciation of the sacred name, while respectfully avoiding its public pronouncement as the name of the Hebrew God. This, we find is in keeping with YirmeYahu (Jer.) 44:26, Jeremias LI.26 (Septuagint).

An Astronomical Revelation

"For a thousand years in thy sight are but as yesterday when it is past, and as a watch in the night." (Tehilim (Ps.) 90:4)

Sinai Bet Sinai LamedSinai Koph

Sinai BetSinai Lamed־ Sinai LamedVav, Nail Sinai Koph

Sinai BetHey Sinai Lamed־ Sinai LamedVav, Nail Sinai Koph

Many thanks to Romolo Simonetti for bringing to my attention two articles that I believe shed light on cosmological ideas in Book of Abraham Facsimile No. 2, Fig. 1.

The articles shared by Romolo are:

(1) Johnson, Hollis R., “ONE DAY TO A CUBIT”, Interpreter, 2013;


(2) Creighton, Scott, “GRAVITY CUBIT”, 2009.

Kolob and lesser stars, M. Lyon

Joseph Smith's explanation of Hypocephalus Facsimile 2, Fig. 1 reads:

"Kolob, signifying the first creation, nearest to the celestial, or the residence of God. First in government, the last pertaining to the measurement of time. The measurement according to celestial time, which celestial time signifies one day to a cubit. One day in Kolob is equal to a thousand years according to the measurement of this earth, which is called by the Egyptians [Ah meh strah ans] Jah.." (bold emphasis added)

Hollis Johnson gives us the most down to earth explanation of how the common cubit arm - "a" (a measure of length) relates to "celestial time". In Johnson's explanation, "celestial time" has to do with the apparent angular movement of the sun relative to earth's starry sky, that is, against the starry background of the perceived celestial sphere.

Johnson explains that ancient peoples noticed that the position of the sun, relative to the "fixed stars" near the ecliptic, shifted with the passing of each day by about the width of one’s pointing finger held at arm’s length (i.e. about a "cubit" away). Thus "one day to a cubit" can be interpreted to mean the apparent, daily angular displacement of the sun relative to  "fixed stars" in the celestial sphere. This seems to account for the "one day to a cubit" statement in Facsimile 2, Fig. 1.

If there is more to the temporal "cubit" than this, it has to do with whether "one day to a cubit" relates only to a day on earth, or to "One day in Kolob".

The 2nd Part of the Ahmehstrahan Degrees (treating Ahmehstrahan Cosmology) tells of "one day to a cubit ..." using somewhat different words than the canonized Facsimile 2 explanation:

"Kolob (Ahmehstrahan symbol) [KOLOB] Kolob. signifies the first creation nearer to the celestial, or the residence of  God, first in government, the last pertaining to the measurement of time, the measurement according to celestial time which signifies, one day to a cubit which day is equal to a thousand years according to the measurement of this earth or Jah..[Tetragrammaton]" (Grammar and Alphabet of the Egyptian Language (1835), Second Part, 5th Degree, pg. 26; bold emphasis added)

Here the Ahmehstrahan 5th Degree seems to indicate that "one day to a cubit" pertains to a day in Kolob, "which day is equal to a thousand [earth] years..." This doesn't appear to be quite the same as Brother Johnson's earth based explanation. Even so, we will see that Johnson's “ONE DAY TO A CUBIT” could be on the right track after all.

The 2nd Part of the Ahmehstrahan Degrees also makes mention of a variable "cubit of motion" in relation to other worlds. This cubit is equivalent to "three days", for instance, or to "six days". (Grammar and Alphabet of the Egyptian Language (1835), Second Part, pp. 25, 28, 32, 34)  

Kolob, Star or Planet?

God said to Abram that "Kolob is the greatest of all the kokaubeam [kokhavim] that thou hast seen [via Urim v'Tumim, and divine vision] because it is nearest unto me" (Abraham 3:16)

The "kokhavim" are "stars". (Bereshit (Gen.) 1:16) Nowhere in LDS Scripture, or in Joseph Smith's Kirtland Egyptian Papers (e.g. the Ahmehstrahan Degrees, 2nd Part) is Kolob called a planet.

Notice that Facsimile No. 2, Fig. 1, uses the preposition "in" in "One day in Kolob ..." in contrast to planetary time, such as "the set time of the earth upon which thou standest". (Abraham 3:6)

In the  Book of Abraham, "whereon" or "upon" is used in describing planetary measurements of time. This is consistent with LDS Doctrine and Covenants 130:4-5 which states, "In answer to the question - Is not the reckoning of God's time, angel's time, prophet's time, and man's time, according to the planet on which they reside? I answer, Yes..."

Scripture may be telling us that "the celestial .. residence of God", "E beth ka" Ebeth-ka, that "Kolob .. is nearest unto", is a planet, or planetary system that celestial beings can reside on. Kolob, however, is a "star", or rather one of the distant but "great lights ... in the firmament of heaven." (Abraham 3:13) Whole galaxies may appear as specs of light far off in space. Remember that it was by Urim v'Tumim that Avram saw that the stars, which appear to unaided human eyes as points of light, were in fact "very great". (Abraham 3:1-2) Many of these points of light are actually more than one star in orbital union.

"Planet" was a familiar term to the Ptolemaic Ahmehstrahans. Credit goes to the ancient Greeks for distinguishing planets as asteres planetai (στέρες πλανται), "wandering stars". Yes, planets were  classed as "stars" anciently, but their apparent retrograde, or slow, back and forth motion distinguished them from the so called "fixed stars". (Jude 1:13)

Kolob is classed as a "fixed star". (Ahmehstrahan Degrees, 2nd Part, pg. 24)

This does not mean that Kolob which "signifies the wonder of Abraham the eldest of all the stars, the greatest body of the heavenly bodies that ever was discovered by man [via Urim v'Tumim] ... the first great grand governing fixed star which is the farthest that ever has been discovered by the fathers which was discovered by Methuselah and also by Abraham" is visible to the unaided eye from earth. (Ahmehstrahan Degrees, 2nd Part,  pp. 32, 34)

12 light years away

Nearby stars e.g. Sirius. The distant great Galactic Center veiled from view.

The fact that Kolob is classed as a "fixed star" simply means that the position of Kolob is in a fixed direction relative to the visible "fixed stars" of our turning galaxy. It does not mean that Kolob can be seen by unaided eyes in earth's night sky. On the contrary, the astronomical reality that best fits super radiant Kolob is veiled, for our sake, from our view. Words imparted by Joseph Smith seem to indicate this.

We are not pursuing an astrological illusion that only "signifies" what Kolob stands for. Our interest here, is in the astronomical reality revealed by a God of truth:

Chariot Temple of the Elohim

Our galaxy – the Milky Way, a merkavah (chariot) temple of the Elohim.

"The Eternal said that he would dwell in the thick darkness." (1 Melakhim (1 Kgs) 8:12)

"God has said let this be the centre for light, and let there be bounds that it may not pass. He hath set a cloud round about in the heavens, and the light of the grand governing of fifteen fixed stars centre there; and from there it is drawn, by the heavenly bodies according to their portions; according to the decrees that God hath set, as the bounds of the ocean, that it should not pass over as a flood, so God has set the bounds of light  lest it pass over and consume the planets." (Joseph Smith, Ahmehstrahan Degrees, 2nd Part, pg. 25; bold emphasis added. See also (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 121:26-32)

Though Ptolemaic Ahmehstrahans were certainly acquainted with the Greek concept of planetai, this is not an astronomical term that Abram would have used, or that God would have used in speaking to his Hebrew son. The word "planets" is simply a suitable translation of the Semitic word "mazalot". But "mazalot", though translated "planets" (KJV), does not mean wandering stars. Mormons should see this as a good thing, because it means that the term "fixed planets" (Facsimile No. 2, Fig. 5) ceases to be an oxymormon (a contradiction in terms unique to Mormon vocabulary). In this case, we are talking about mazalot in relative motion, that appear more or less fixed with respect to themselves. What are mazalot?

The mazalot are the stations, or abodes of deities. Mazalot were seen as "stars of fortune".  Besides describing planets which appear to wander to and fro near the ecliptic, mazalot may also describe groups of "fixed stars" (constellations) that appear to move together in the same vicinity of the ecliptic. Thus the seasonal mazalot may have come to be differentiated from circumpolar stars. (Iyov (Job) 38:32, "mazalot" misspelled as "Mazzaroth")

God's astronomical revelations to Avram spoke of "kokhavim", "stars" and "mazalot", translated "planets" (abodes of divine beings, THE NEW Brown-Driver-Briggs-Gesenius Hebrew and English Lexicon, 4208, מַזָלוֹת, pg. 561).

The earth is classed among an order of "mazalot", "planets" according to Abraham 3:9. See also Ahmehstrahan Degrees, 2nd Part, pg. 33. The earth is not considered a "planet" (in the Greek sense) in erroneous geocentric models of the Cosmos.

Curiously, our sun is classed among the "governing planets", "fixed planets", i.e. "mazalot", and also the "stars", "kokhavim" according to Facsimile No. 2, Fig. 5.

Our sun is classed as both a "fixed star" and a "central moving planet" according to the Ahmehstrahan Degrees, 2nd Part, pp. 29 , 30, 32, 34.  

This revealed cosmology, which at first appears contradictory, bespeaks a sun centered solar system in which the "central" star (our sun) is considered fixed relative to other "fixed stars". The sun is certainly not thought to be a fixed star in geocentric models. Apparently, the sun and other "fixed stars" are understood to orbit (like planets) around a greater, veiled cosmic center. This is not the illusory center of rotation perceived in the night sky of the Northern Hemisphere.

Dendera Temple Zodiac

From Hugh Nibley’s Temple and Cosmos, pg 18. The circumpolar and zodiacal heavens represented on the ceiling of the not so ancient Dendera Temple of Egypt. The illusory center of the "turning" heavens is near the well known circumpolar constellation the "Great Bear" or "Big Dipper". Can you see the "dog star" Sirius (depicted above) near the heel of Orion? The apparent motion of Sirius about the pole star, is "swifter" than other "fixed stars" because Sirius appears near the celestial equator. The Sothic cycle of Sirius, having to do with its heliacal rising, is estimated at 1,461 Egyptian civil years of 365 days each. If Sirius, or any other visible star "signifies" Kolob, it is a connection formed in astrological imagination, not astronomical revelation.


"...and their appearance and their work was as it were a wheel in the middle of a wheel." (YehezqEl (Ezek.) 1:16)

What is the actual timekeeping mechanism of Kolob? Scripture informs us:

"And the Lord said unto me by the Urim and Thummim, that Kolob was after the manner of the Lord, according to its times and seasons in the revolutions thereof; that one revolution was a day unto the Lord, after his manner of reckoning, it being one thousand years according to the time appointed whereon thou standest. This is the reckoning of the Lord's time according to the reckoning of Kolob. (Abraham 3:4; bold emphasis added)

"Ahmehstrahan 1000...a numerical figure, in Egyptian [Ahmehstrahan] signifying one thousand; answering to the measuring of the time of Oliblish, which is equal with Kolob in its revolution and in its measuring of time." (Facsimile No. 2, Fig. 4; bold emphasis added)

The word "revolution" can apply to both apparent, and physical cyclical motion. "Revolution" can mean "Orbital motion about a point". The word can also refer to "A turning or rotational motion about an axis .. A single complete cycle of such orbital or axial motion." (American Heritage Dictionary)

The Ahmehstrahan understanding that "the Moon, the Earth, and the Sun" have "annual revolutions" (Facsimile No. 2, Fig. 5), hints of the esoteric society's extraordinary understanding of the cosmos. For the earth to have "annual revolutions" she cannot be the static center of the universe that many (not all) ancient peoples supposed. (Alma 30:44, Helaman 12:15)

The moon doesn't exactly orbit the earth's center. Both bodies orbit a common center called a barycentre. The Ahmehstrahan term "Flo-eese" is defined in one instance as "The moon in its revolutions with earth, showing or signifying the earth going between, thereby forming an eclipse". (Ahmehstrahan Degrees, 2nd Part, pg. 27) The term "revolutions" in this instance describes the moon's orbit "with the earth", such that the orbiting earth (not fixed) is periodically found "going between, thereby forming an eclipse [lunar eclipse in this case]".

Our star, the sun, is a radiant "planet" orbiting our galaxy's blazing center. The sun therefore has an "annual revolution" with respect to our galaxy, the Milky Way. One galactic year for our solar system, is between 225 to 250 million terrestrial years.

The Ahmehstrahan term "Flos-isis" is defined in one instance as, "The sun in its affinity [power of attraction] with Earth and moon - signifying their revolutions showing the power, the one has with the other". Note the implied connection between the revolutions of the sun, earth and moon and the power of attraction that exists between them. (Ahmehstrahan Degrees, 2nd Part, pg. 30)

Amazingly, it is possible that ancient Egyptians standardized their Royal Cubit based on the nearly constant acceleration of gravity at the earth’s surface, and a consistent interval of time found in nature. Their repeatable interval of time could have derived from the passage of the solar disc on earth's horizon. (See Creighton, Scott, “GRAVITY CUBIT”, 2009)

It turns out that the proposed "gravity cubit" (companion to the Royal Egyptian Cubit or "Mahe"), is practically identical in length to the meter (m).

The Ahmehstrahans, it seems, had a rather profound understanding of  relations between length, time, and the "power of attraction" between worlds.

How can LDS scripture guide our understanding of spatial, temporal and gravitational relations? Perhaps we can begin to answer this by asking a more basic question:

If the time standard of Tellus (the world in which we now live) were kept on a clock in Kolob so that the timepiece indicated the passage of days (~24 hours each), how many Tellus days would the clock indicate in a single celestial day (a revolution of Kolob)? Remember, one revolution of Kolob is "a day unto the Lord". In other words, imagine a clock on earth counting our planet's daily revolutions, how many earth revolutions, or earth days would an identical clock register "in Kolob" as the stellar creation completed "one revolution"?

Let Δtearth represent an interval of time measured in earth days according to the revolutions of our world Tellus. Let the Hebrew letter "Koph" () represent a factor for converting earth days, to Kolob revolutions (celestial days). is then a ratio of one Kolob day to earth days. indicates the reciprocal amount of time (in earth days) that a clock in Kolob registers as Kolob completes one revolution. We see that the scriptural expression "all the days of their days ..." (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 121:31) is not redundant after all, but represents a comparison of different astronomical time standards, e.g. .

Let ΔtKolob represent an interval of time "in Kolob" corresponding to Δtearth (measured and experienced on earth). In other words Δtearth represents "the set time of the earth upon which thou standest". (Abraham 3:6) ΔtKolob also represents the time of Ebeth-ka "nigh unto Kolob, which Kolob is after the reckoning of the Lord's time; which Kolob is set nigh unto the throne of God, to govern all those planets which belong to the same order as that upon which thou standest." (Abraham 3:9)

How is ΔtKolob mathematically expressed in terms of Δtearth?

We may suppose that since one earth year is approximately equal to (≈) 365 earth days, and "One day in Kolob is equal to a thousand years according to the measurement of this earth", that the conversion factor ≈ one celestial day per 365,000 earth days. We may then think to propose the following simplistic relation:

We are assuming here that for every 365,000 earth days registered on the clock in Kolob, only one revolution of Kolob occurs. But this is not necessarily what scripture is telling us.

It is true that for every 365,000 axial turns of our planet, one revolution of distant Kolob occurs. But this does not mean that one revolution of Kolob seems like 365,000 earth days to an observer in Kolob. The conversion factor is not necessarily the reciprocal of 365,000. For all we can tell, one day in Kolob seems like one day on earth, even though for each revolution of Kolob, a thousand years pass on earth.

What scriptural justification is there for the idea that time may not evaluate the same for the Lord on Ebeth-ka compared to the passage of time on this earth?

The Jewish prophet Shim'on Kepha Ben Yonah (Petros) wrote:

"But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day." (2 Peter 3:8)

Does the statement seem redundant, perhaps contradictory to you? What if the prophet were saying something like:

"...one day [celestial revolution] with the Lord is as a thousand [earth] years, and a thousand years [on this earth] as [the passage of] one [earth] day [to the Lord in heaven].

The prophet Kepha was undoubtedly drawing from Hebrew Scripture:

"For a thousand years in thy sight [thine eyes] are but as yesterday when it is past, and a watch in the night." (Tehilim (Ps.) 90:4)

Thus Hebrew scripture seems to suggests a relativity of temporal experience. That Tehilim (Ps.) 90:4 is more than poetic, that it is to be taken literally, is evidenced by the fact that it resolves Bereshit (Gen.) 2:17 and 5:5. (See also Abraham 5:13)

Temporal relativity should be taken into consideration when attempting to relate ΔtKolob and Δtearth.

Already there appears a possible reconciliation of Johnson's earth based "one day to a cubit", versus "one [Kolob] day to a cubit which day is equal to a thousand [earth] years ...":


If the temporal experience of one revolution "in Kolob" is comparable to the experience of a passing day on earth (marked by the sun's apparent angular movement of one "cubit"), then a temporal "cubit" may represent both a day on earth, as well as the amount of time perceived to pass "in Kolob" during one celestial revolution.

Of course the great stellar creation to which the one day "cubit" relates, is hidden from common view, as Joseph Smith has indicated. One may imagine this or than visible surrogate, but any one of these, at best only "signifies" the reality of Kolob.

It may be significant that among several possible meanings of "Ahmehstrah", we have "Amah + sitrah" = אַמָת-סִתְרָה, "ell of protection", "cubit of hiding", "hidden cubit".

We cannot see with unaided eyes true Kolob.

Deriving the Kolob Formula "line upon line"

The Kolob formula, relating time intervals ΔtKolob and Δtearth, needs to be general enough to represent (at least approximately) more than one possible orbital scenario. Scenarios could involve Ebeth-ka, Kolob, Oliblish, earth and more. The abstract model which I propose considers only chronometers (clocks) orbiting a center which has effective gravitational mass M:

revolutions of Kolob  

The clock representing the time interval ΔtKolob represents time "in Kolob", or time on Ebeth-ka etc.

The clock registering Δtearth represents the interval of time on our world, Tellus.

Tellus is considered to be so distant from M, that her clock-rate (the relative rate at which her timepiece "ticks") is not significantly  influenced by the gravitational field of M. The orbital velocity of our earth (and solar system) about M is also considered to have negligible effect on earth's clock-rate relative to Kolob.

A note on the distinction between Tellus and Terra: Terra is chosen as the Latin name of the unseen companion earth that is superposed with our world in a relative state of i-momentum, negative kinetic energy, and therefore relative intangibility. Material "wavicles" quantum tunnel between both worlds binding the earths together. Either world is visible, and tangible to its inhabitants. See "Where was Eden? Where is the Garden of God?" It may be instructive to note that celestial "caelum", terrestrial "terra", and "tellus" all are Latin terms. (1 Corinthians 15:40-41, KJV)

As before, represents the Kolob conversion factor converting Tellus time (earth days, compared in Kolob) to Kolob days. Thus ΔtKolob and Δtearth are expressed in the same units of time (Kolob revolutions); whereas Δtearth represents earth days on Tellus.

The reader may want to experiment with different values of M and . You will see that can vary; representing a variety of orbital scenarios (distances r from M) in which one revolution of Kolob nevertheless occurs for every 365,000 axial revolutions of Tellus - "one thousand years according to the time appointed unto that whereon thou standest." (Abraham 3:4)

We begin by setting the centripetal gravitational attraction of M acting on the Kolob clock (of minor mass mk) equal to the so called "centrifugal force" exerted on mk due to its orbital velocity V at radius r from M. We may consider that mk orbits the center of M (M >> mk). In fact we may eliminate mk from both sides of the equation and solve for orbital speed V squared, in terms of G (the universal gravitational constant), M and r:

With these terms expressed in  SI units (International System of Units) we may think of r as representing distance measured in "gravity cubits" (m).

Notice that as r increases away from a central gravitational body (e.g. the earth, the sun etc.), orbital speed V is diminished; so that an orbiting body "moveth in order more slow" the further away it is from M. At least in this sense an orbiting body, further away can have "a longer time as to its reckoning". Its "months" are longer and fewer if the more remote orbiting body is a planetary satellite; and its "years" are longer and fewer if the orbiting body is a more distant planet moving about stellar M. The reckoning of "days", on the other hand, typically depends on the orbiting body's axial rotation. In our solar system, the inner planets have rotational periods longer than the earth's. The outer Jovian planets have rotational periods shorter than the earth's.

Scripture points out the "fact" that the "set time of the lesser light" (earth's moon) "is a longer time as to its reckoning than the reckoning of the time of the earth upon which thou standest." A lunar day is a month long. But the notion that "days" on orbiting mazalot may be longer and fewer with greater r is not generally true. There may be cases in which it is true. For instance, if orbiting mazalot are locked into facing M (as the moon is locked into facing the earth), the days of the more distant mazalot will be longer with greater r. (Abraham 3:5-9)

Note that "the lesser light" (possibly the moon, Olea) is described by the God of Abram as a "planet", or rather a מזלה "mazalah", i.e. an abode of deity. See also LDS Doctrine and Covenants 88:8. He is literally "in the moon"! Consider the seven letter Hebrew expression for the moon, with the first and last letters spelling the name of the deity: ירח לבנה. (Bereshit (Gen.) 37:9, Yesha'Yahu (Is.) 24:23)

The word "even" appearing in the line which reads, "... the lesser light, lesser than that which is to rule the day, even the night ..." could represent the Hebrew conjunction אף "aph", which can also mean "yea", "indeed", "really". It is not entirely clear that the use of the word "even", or "aph" in this case disqualifies "the lesser light" from being the moon.

Moreover, one wonders if there isn't a connection between the Hebrew word "ha-laylah", translated "the night" (Abraham 3:5) and "Olea, which is the moon" in the language of the being who taught Avram astronomy. (Abraham 3:13, LDS Doctrine and Covenants 117:8) "Laylah", לילה, HeySinai LamedYodSinai Lamed, "Night" contains the letters of the divine name "Yah" or "Lah" whom the Egyptian associated with the moon. Perhaps a lunar implication was clearer in the language of the Sepher Avram:

"The planet [Ha-mazalah] which is the lesser light [ha-maor ha-qaton], lesser than that which is to rule the day, even the night [aph ha-laylah], is above or greater that that upon which thou standest in point of reckoning, for it moveth in order more slow ..."

The above line more strongly suggested to the Hebrew mind "the lesser light, ... even Olea", in as much as "aph ha-laylah",  not only means "even the night", but literally translates, "face of the night" - a poetic, but clear reference to the moon.

But if "The planet [Ha-mazalah] which is the lesser light, lesser than that which is to rule the day, even the night..." refers to earth's moon, how can it be that "the reckoning of its time is not so many as to its number of days, and of months, and of years"? A lunar month is essentially a lunar day (same as a Hebrew month on earth), and a lunar year is essentially the time it takes for the earth and moon together to complete one orbit around the sun.

Perhaps these apparent inconsistencies can be reconciled in the understanding that the words "and of" appearing in "... number of days, and of months, and of years", was originally the letter "vav", or nail sign joining "number of days Vav, Nailmonths Vav, Nailyears" together. We might then consider that the "number" mentioned in the verse, could mean the sum of "days + months + years" of lunar time.

Indeed, an interval of lunar time ΔtOlea can be expressed in terms of: part of a lunar day +  lunar months (determined on the moon by counting cycles of the changing phases of the earth, or cycles of day and night) + the number of years (trips around the sun) during the interval.

Years should properly be expressed in lunar days before adding to give ΔtOlea in lunar days. Defined this way, ΔtOlea satisfies the description of being "not so many as to its number" when compared with the same time interval measured in earth days. This interpretation reconciles Abraham 3:5-9 with the astronomical facts.

Let's now introduce the general effect of gravitational clock-rate dilation on a clock in the gravity field of M (modeled here as non-rotating):

c is the speed of light in "gravity cubits" (meters) per second, measured locally in a gravitational field. is again a conversion factor allowing time to be measured in the same units.

Considering the effects that gravitational fields have on clocks and on light, we may be brought to inquire if the time "medium of Kli-flos-is-es or Ha-ko-kau-beam" represents a hierarchy of superposed gravitational fields of stars - fields through which light propagates? "Flos isis" is apparently tied to "The governing principle of light", as well as to the "affinity" that exists between a star and other revolving bodies that receive light from the star. (Facsimile No. 2, Fig. 5; Ahmehstrahan Degrees, 2nd Part, pp. 25, 28, 32, 34)

Next we consider the clock-rate dilation of an orbiting clock as a result of its motion relative to the gravity field of M. The gravity field of M is assumed here to be at rest with respect to M. The resulting formula matches the prediction of Special Relativity, but know that Einstein was the first to point out that Special Relativity is limited to a theoretical universe of uniform linear motions. Special Relativity theory's relative simultaneity predictions become confounded in a universe of real orbital motions. Even so, clock-rate dilation is manifest in material things exhibiting non linear motion in a field:

This formula may help resolve an apparent conflict: Scripture seams to suggest that Kolob's time is "longer" presumably because "it moveth in order more slow". (Abraham 3:4-9) Yet the Ahmehstrahan 5th Degree, 2nd Part, pg. 25 states "Kli flosis signifies Kolob in its motions, which is swifter than the rest of the twelve fixed stars; going before, being first in motion, being delegated to have power over others to regulate others in their time ..."

Note that the "swifter" the clock's speed (V → c), the slower it ticks.

Applying these temporal effects to the Kolob clock we obtain:


Continuing, we find we are dealing with a quadratic in r:

The solutions to which are given by:



Picking  a form of the solution in keeping with ΔtKolob > 0:




Let ΔtKolob = 1 revolution of Kolob (1 celestial day).

Let Δtearth = 365,000 earth days (1000 years on Tellus).

Notice what happens to r (measured in gravity cubits, m) if we set equal to 1 Kolob revolution/365,000 earth days. The distance r from M becomes  arbitrarily distant - so remote that the Kolob clock essentially ticks at the same rate as the earth clock. In this case 1000 earth years pass in Kolob, and on earth for each revolution of the star.

Now notice what happens if is set equal to 1 Kolob revolution/earth day. The passing of one revolution in Kolob seems like the passing of a day on earth, notwithstanding the fact that 1000 years have gone by on our planet. What distance is r from M in this case? The orbital radius r turns out to be only slightly greater than 2GM/c2.

rs = 2GM/c2 is the distance from M at which the velocity required to get away from the gravitational hold of M is the speed of light. There really are such incredibly powerful gravitational sources in the centers of galaxies like ours.

Perhaps if we had the right kind of bodies, and means so that we could quantum tunnel at will (popping in and out of realms of relative i-momentum); and if we could travel superluminally - in the twinkling of an eye, perhaps we could even find ways to physically abide the presence of the Great Galactic Center.

As suggested earlier, you may want to seek out possible values for M (measured in kg). Also try different values for . See how r (in gravity cubits, m) can vary while nevertheless satisfying the scriptural requirement that for every revolution of Kolob, 1000 years pass on earth. A better model might take into consideration effects resulting from the rotation of M. Such an undertaking may prove to be not so trivial!

Meanings of Kolob

LDS Apostle Bruce R. McConkie speculated that "Kolob means "the first creation"..." (MORMON DOCTRINE, KOLOB). Elder McConkie apparently obtained this impression from a reading of Facsimile No. 2, Fig. 1. What the facsimile explanation clearly tells us is what Kolob is, not what "Kolob" means. Using similar reasoning we might conclude from Joseph Smith's inspired dictations that Kolob means "the wonder of Abraham the eldest of all the stars..."

This isn't the first time that religious people have attached a meaning to a scriptural term based on what the text describes it to be, or on an impression of a context in which the term is applied. The results don't always match what the term actually (originally) means. Other examples to consider are the words "Zion", and "Hosanna".

The name "Kolob" is in all likelihood a word in Elohit, the language of the Elohim - what Mormons call "Adamic". Even so, Hebraic analysis of the name "Kolob" is possible, because of similarities between Ivrit (Hebrew) and Elohit.

Scripture hints that Adam, son of Man, spoke a language similar to Ivrit. Take for example the fact that "ha-Adam" called his wife "ishah" (Heb: a Woman) because from "ish" (Heb: a Man) she was taken. This statement makes acute sense in Ivrit. (Bereshit (Gen.) 2:23) There are other indications in Hebrew scripture which suggest the primacy of a form of Ivrit.

The Eternal God revealed to Avram by Urim v'Tumim (divine instruments bestowed in Ur) that the stars are much more than mere points of light in the night sky, that they are in fact "very great, and that one of them was nearest unto the throne of God..."! The Eternal then explained to his Hebrew son that "...the name of the great one is Kolob because it is near unto me, for I am the Eternal thy God ... Kolob is the greatest of all the Kokhavim that thou hast seen, because it is nearest unto me." (Abraham 3:1-4, 16)

What then does "Kolob" mean?

Let us consider three ancient symbols/letters spelling "Kolob", each of which has its own significance and meaning:

The first is "kaph", meaning "open palm, hallow or cup of the hand", also  suggesting curving, bending or submissions to another's will.

The more ancient pictographic symbol of "kaph", Sinai Koph evolved into the post-exilic Hebrew letter .

The letter "kaph" spelled out is:

Sinai Peh Sinai Koph

The Hebrew letter means "as" or "like", as in the archangel's name "Mi'kha'El" (מִיכָאֵל), "Who is like God?"

Kolob is on the hand of God's throne.

The second letter is "lamed" (a shepherd's staff), symbolically suggesting the act of directing, by pushing or pulling, also symbolizing protection and defense.

The more ancient pictographic representation of the shepherd's staff "lamed",Sinai Lamed evolved into the Hebrew character ל, which is easily confused with "resh" ר, the head, which also signifies "first".

The letter "lamed" spelled out is:

Sinai DaletSinai MemSinai Lamed

The Hebrew letter "lamed" also means "to" or "towards", as in directing or moving something in a particular direction. The shepherd's staff "lamed" also represents authority, leading others. It is also a yoke, rod, or beam carried on the shoulders, emblematic of binding, as in a bond or tie. The idea of "affinity" or "power of attraction" also comes to mind.

Kolob is as a great veiled shepherd of stars - head of ha-kokhavim. Lamed (Sinai Lamed) even looks like a shepherding arm of a spiral galaxy - reaching out from a great galactic heart or head.

The third letter is "bet" (house, or portable dwelling), as in Bet-El, "Beth-El", "House of God". Various Ahmehstrahan terms containing "Beth", relate to "residence" or "place". The Ahmehstrahans may have seen in "E beth-ka" the dwelling place of the soul (ka).

The more ancient pictographic representation of "bet",Sinai Bet evolved into the later Hebrew letter .

The spelling out of "bet" resembles the Ahmehstrahan "tah" in reverse order:

Tav mark, "t"Sinai Bet

The Hebrew letter "bet" by itself means "in", "inside", "within" as in "in the house", "in Kolob", "in the bosom of eternity ... in midst of all things." "Bet" also suggests family, as in "Bet-Yisra'El", "House of Israel". The esoteric Ahmehstrahans related "Ba eth" to "all mankind, man or men".

The throne of God near Kolob is "E beth Ka", "The Celestial Kingdom where God dwells".

In addition to the above three symbols/letters we should also consider "vav" (nail, hook, or tent peg) as in the vavim (nails or hooks) on which were hung the curtains of the portable temple of the Eternal (earthly model of the heavenly temple). (Shemot (Ex.) 26:31-32, Hebrews 10:19-20) The current character of "vav" (ו) still looks like a nail, somewhat matching the ancient pictogramVav, Nail.

The letter "vav" is spelled out with two nail signs:

Vav, NailVav, Nail

The Hebrew letter "vav", placed at the beginning of words represents "and" - joining or connecting words as if by a nail.

In addition to "vav", we should include the letter "hey" (one with upraised arms to heaven). The more ancient pictographic representation of "hey",Hey evolved into the post-exilic Hebrew letter ה.

Like other Hebrew letters potentially involved in the spelling of the name "Kolob", "hey" by itself, has a singular meaning when added at the beginning of words. Hey, or ה, represents "the".

The Ptolemaic Ahmehstrahans could have perceived a connection betweenHey and the "E" in "E beth-ka". "E" could possibly have been interpreted as "the", in "E beth-ka", "the house of soul"

Hey relates to the Egyptian symbol for the starry heavens, which is also a numerical figure, in Egyptian, signifying one million. Note the twelve large divinities with outstretched arms, holding up the bowl of the starry firmament depicted in the Dendera Temple ceiling. These call to mind the "Khesilim", כסיליםSinai MemYodSinai LamedYodSinai SamekhSinai Koph constellations hinted at in Hebrew scripture (Yesha'Yahu (Is.) 13:10). Theses are hey like giants thought to seasonally appear at opposite ends of the starry firmament, near the ecliptic. Their outstretched hands appear in the minds eye to hold up the circumpolar dome of the night sky:

Kesil of Winter                                                               Kesil of Summer

It is also appropriate that the esoteric Ahmehstrahan word "Ho-hah-op" Ho-hah-oop, meaning "An intercessor, one who has been appointed to intercede for another; invocation", begins with the phonetic sound of the letter Hey.

Of course "vav"Vav, Nail and "hey"Hey are integral to the sacred name of the Eternal; and "kaph" (cupped palm of the hand)Sinai Koph is next to, and akin to the first letter of the sacred name, "yod" (hand, forearm)Yod. In other words, Sinai Koph is literally next to Yod in the aleph-bet, as Kolob is near to God.

The first spelling of Kolob,Sinai BetSinai LamedSinai Koph, כּלב likely means "like the heart", "after the heart", or "as the mind". (1 Shemu'El (1 Sam.) 13:14) This makes sense of the scriptural statement: "...the name of the great one is ...Sinai Koph because it is near unto me, for I am ...Yod thy God ..."

As mentioned before, in the process of copying the text of Iyov (Job) 38:32, the  letter "lamed" (ל), in "mazalot", was long ago taken for a "resh" (ר). Even a methodical scribe is apt to do such a thing. Replace the "lamed" in Kolob with a "resh", and we may see the word "keruv" (כְּרוּב)  - "cherub". The ancient word "kerub" could mean "great", or "mighty".

The "keruvim" (כְּרֻבִים) are of course near to the presence of God. (Shemot (Ex.) 25:22) The word "keruv" even sounds like the Hebrew word for "near", "qarov" (קָרֹב).

Here we come near Elder McConkie's stated meaning of Kolob: Replace the lamed Sinai Lamed with "resh" Sinai Resh, which signifies "head" or "first", and we may see in the symbols, Sinai BetSinai ReshSinai Koph, the meaning "as the first created thing".  A houseSinai Bet, of course, signifies an earthly thing that is made. Bet Sinai Bet begins not only the Hebrew and Aramaic words for "house", "son (s)" etc., but also the word בּרא, Sinai AlephSinai ReshSinai Bet, "bara", meaning "create" - as in an act of divine creation. 

Consider the bright star "Kalb al Aqrab", "Heart of the Scorpion", also known as Antares. This star is a red supergiant, and one of the four Royal Stars seen near the ecliptic. "Kalb al Aqrab" not only sounds like "Kolob" but the word for "scorpion", "aqrab" sounds like the Hebrew word for "near". But this "Kalb" is not Kolob, though it directs earthbound stargazers to the great, veiled Galactic Center. Kalb al Aqrab is undoubtedly one of the many stars that Avram saw "were very great".

Its ok to imagine that Kalb al Aqrab "signifies Kolob ... swifter than the rest ... eldest of the stars, the greatest body of the heavenly bodies ... the great grand governing fixed star which is the farthest ... discovered by the fathers ... " Were Antares as near to us as Sirius, the supergiant would certainly make the popular neighborhood binary star appear like a dog with its pup.

That being said, the three letter spelling of "Kolob", כּלב, is the same spelling as the name of the Jewish hero "Kalev", "Caleb", which is the same spelling as the Hebrew word for "dog", "kelev".

Its nice to astrologically pretend that the God star could be the bright neighborhood dog star. But if you seek a Royal Star "which is swifter" in its apparent motion (being closer to the celestial equator), a star "delegated to have power over others to regulate others in their time ..." you seek the "heart of the Lion" Yad of Aviv, Regulus.

Its ok to imagine that Regulus, at least in part, "signifies" what Kolob stands for. Viewed from far enough away, Regulus appears as a single point of light. But Regulus is actually more than one star in orbital union. What if Kolob is actually a unified plurality of stars, a multiple star system? A "star" composed of numerous stars in orbital union, may nevertheless appear as a single point of light when viewed from far enough away. Can the entire heart, or hub of a galaxy be thought of as a multiple star system?

 Kolob and lesser stars, M. Lyon

A possible double meaning in a verse from the book of Iyov presents itself:

"Is not God [אלוה, HeyVav, NailSinai LamedSinai Aleph, Eloah] in the height of heaven(s) [shamayim]? and behold the head [rosh, singular] of the stars [kokhavim], for they are high!" (Iyov (Job) 22:12)

Spelled with a double lamed (shepherd staff) like this: Sinai BetSinai Lamed Sinai LamedSinai Koph, or completed with a nail like this: Sinai BetSinai Lamed Sinai LamedVav, Nail Sinai Koph, "Kolob" means "all heart" or "whole heart"; as in "seek him with all thy heart". (Devarim (Deut) 4:29)

In the name כּללב we see the Hebrew verb כּלל meaning "complete, perfect". The "bet"Sinai Bet(ב) following "kalal" Sinai LamedSinai LamedSinai Koph(כּלל) suggests to the mind, "house", "family". Bet is the first letter in the Hebrew spelling of "son(s)" or "children" (male and female). Here then, tacitly symbolized, is God's greatest work and glory.

"Blessed art thou, Eternal our God, King of ha-Olam (Eternity) ..." The Eternal our God is "a consuming fire, he is El qana", " ... Elohekha esh [→ ish] okhlah, hu El qana". (Devarim (Deut) 4:24)

"Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire, who among us shall dwell with everlasting burnings? He that walketh righteously ... He shall dwell on high". (Yesha'Yahu (Is.) 33:14-16)

This brings us to the spelling of "Kolob" with the double shepherd staff, and hey:

Sinai BetHey Sinai Lamed־ Sinai LamedSinai Koph

Or complete, with both the hey and the vav from the Eternal's name:

Sinai BetHey Sinai Lamed־ Sinai LamedVav, Nail Sinai Koph

"Kalahav", כּלהב means "as a flame (fiercely blazing, blade like)".

But spelled with two shepherd staffs, and completed with the nail, the name becomes "Kol-lahab", כּוֹל-להב, which means "All flame (fiercely blazing, like a fiery blade)". ("blaze fiercely", THE NEW Brown-Driver-Briggs-Gesenius Hebrew and English Lexicon, להב, pg. 529)

We may also think of "Kol-Ab",Sinai BetSinai Aleph־ Sinai LamedVav, Nail Sinai Koph, "All Father", כֹּל-אב.

We may then think of "All Love", which has a one-to-one letter correspondence with "in thy God":

 "...the name of the great one is Sinai BetHeySinai Aleph־ Sinai LamedVav, Nail Sinai Koph because it is near unto me, for I am HeyVav, NailHeyYod thy God ..."

כול אהב באלוהיך

(THE NEW Brown-Driver-Briggs-Gesenius Hebrew and English Lexicon, אהב, pp. 12-13)



Return to Princess of On


Abraham in Egypt and the Papyrus Solar Ferry


Esoteric Egyptian in the Margins of the Book of Abraham


Joseph Smith’s Book of the Dead Hypocephalus


Esoteric Egyptian in Facsimile No. 2


TETRAGRAMMATEarth in her four quartersN and EARTH    




Vincent Coon וִנְסֶנְטיכּוּן Copyright 2017


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