The terrible Baphomet is, in fact, like all monstrous enigmas of ancient science, nothing more than an innocent and even pious hieroglyph.- Eliphas Lévi
The mysterious true origins of Baphomet has eluded historians for centuries. Many books and tales have been made in attempt to trace the true history, but to this date no one has made “all” the connections that will be made in the article below. The purpose of the series of these articles will be to explore the origins and also the hidden allegorical meaning of this somewhat grotesque image of a half goat man/woman.
In the course of my research I have found that the origins of Baphomet all lead to one man that had lived in the eleventh century who happened to become the first French Pope. His name was no other then Gerbert of Aurillac or known in the Christian world as Pope Sylvester II.
There are some historians who mistakenly claim that the Knights Templars were the original creators or first constructors of a Brazen Head or Baphomet. But in fact it was actually Gerbert of Aurillac, AKA Pope Sylvester II (c. 945–1003 CE) was the first person ever documented in history to be in possession of this mechanical talking head. Then we can later find several subsequent stories of people in possession of such a device as the Knights Templar (ca. 1119–1312), then by Rob Grosseteste (1175-1353), next in line is Saint Albertus Magnus (c. 1200–1282 CE), Marquis of Vilêna of Spain (1384-1434), Polander, a disciple of Escotillo an Italian and last but certainly not least, Francis Bacon (22 January 1561 – 9 April 1626).. It spoke thrice. If Bacon heard it speak, he would succeed, if not, he would fail. While Bacon slept Milis was set to watch, and the head spoke twice:”Time was,” it said, and half an hour later, “Time is.” Still Bacon slept, and another half-hour transpired, when the head reclaimed, ” Time’s past,” fell to the ground and was broken to pieces.
These were the first Alchemists and Gnostics in history that were in possession of prophetic devices made of brass or bronze brazen talking heads that could answer questions put to them by their masters. Pope Sylvester II was even publicly accused by Cardinal Benno for being a sorcerer and an enchanter. William of Malmsbury had told the story of Pope Sylvester II that he made such a head that correlated with the constellations (As Above, So Below) that would speak when spoken to, but that these answers made by the mechanical head were only single words or simply “yes” or “no.”
With that said, it is clear that the first verifiable person to have this knowledge or head in his possession was Gerbert of Aurillac. It wasn’t until after his death that his disciple Fulbert and the Templar descendants of Gerbert would later possess this same head or the blueprint instructions to construct such a prophetic device.
Shortly after Pope Sylvestor was murdered, the name Baphomet appears for the first time in history in July 1098 in a letter by the crusader Anselm of Ribemont;
“Sequenti die aurora apparente, altis vocibus Baphometh invocaverunt; et nos Deum nostrum in cordibus nostris deprecantes, impetum facientes in eos, de muris civitatis omnes expulimus.”
“As the next day dawned they called loudly upon Baphometh while we prayed silently in our hearts to God; then we attacked and forced all of them outside the city walls”
A chronicler of the First Crusade, Raymond of Aguilers, calls the mosquesBafumarias. The name Bafometz later appears around 1195 in the Occitan poem “Senhors, per los nostres peccatz” by the troubadourGavaudan.Around 1250 in a poem bewailing the defeat of the Seventh Crusade by Austorc d’Aorlhac refers to Bafomet.De Bafomet is also the title of one of four surviving chapters of an Occitan translation of Ramon Llull‘s earliest known work, the Libre de la doctrina pueril, “book on the instruction of children”
This Brazen Head was not worshiped by the Templars or Gerbert, but for the alchemical processes and meditated upon in order to gain answers to the questions that perplexed them. This was done by use of magick through the the spirit world where the head was used as an oracle for answers to their masters. The root of the name Baphomet is “Ba” and it doesn’t take long to make the connection to Ba’al who we know as the meaning in Gaelic and in Phoenician is “the lord of heaven or the father ” The name in Arabic, Aramaic and Hebrew, means “bet’ amet,” or “place of truth.” As mentioned above, these heads gave their masters simple one word answers to their questions so it only makes perfect sense that these celestial spheres were their Lords of Truth.
In the book, “The mysteries of magic: a digest of the writings of Eliphas Lévi by Éliphas Lévi and Arthur Edward Waiteok explains the reason why this name was chosen. Please keep in mind that Éliphas Lévi is the artist who had given us the best known image of this Idol.
The Baphomcts of the Templars, whose names should be spelt kabbalistically backward, is composed of three abbreviations—TEM OHP AB, Temple omnium hominum pads abbas, the father of the temple, universal peace of men. According to some, it was a monstrous head, according to others, a goat-shaped demon. A sculptured casket, unearthed in the ruins of an ancient commandry of the Templars, was observed by antiquaries to be a baphometic figure, conformable in its attributes to our goat of Mendes and the androgyne of Khunrath. It is bearded, but with the entire body of a woman; in one hand it holds the sun, in the other the moon, joined to it by chains. This virile head is a beautiful allegory which attributes to thought alone the first and creative cause. The head here represents mind, and the female body matter. The stars, bound to the human form and directed by that nature of which intelligence is the head, have also a sublime significance.
The terrible Baphomet is, in fact, like all monstrous enigmas of ancient science, nothing more than an innocent and even pious hieroglyph.
Let us declare emphatically to combat the remnants of manichaeanism that Satan, as a superior personality and power, has no existence.
THE DEVIL, IN BLACK MAGIC, IS THE GREAT MAGIC AGENT EMPLOYED FOR EVIL PURPOSES BY A PERVERSE WILL.
This Devil and black magic I will cover later in another post. But the facts are these heads were nothing more than disguised prophetic spherical devices that would aid their masters in receiving the answers they were looking for from the father of the temple.
Gerbert had gained this knowledge and would later become a master alchemist after he had went to Spain as a pupil at Cordova for the purpose of learning astrology and other sciences from the Saracens. It was said that here he soon exceeded Ptolemy in learning;
in the astrolabe, Alchind in astronomy, and TuliusFirmicus in fatality. Here he learned the meaning of the flight and language of birds, and was taught how to raise spectres from hell. Here he acquired whatever human curiosity has discovered for the destruction or convenience of mankind. I say nothing of his knowledge in arithmetic, music, and geometry, which he so fully understood, as to think them beneath his genius, and which he yet, with great industry, introduced into France, where they had been long forgotten. He certainly was the first who brought the algorithm from the Saracens, and who illustrated it with such rules that the most studious in that science cannot explain. He lodged with a philosopher of that sect.'”—Warton.
Gerbert of Aurillac was born in Auvergne, France in the year 946 and later martyred in 1003 at the age of 58.
His father was Raymond III Pons of Toulouse, Duke of Aquitaine and Count of Auvergne, who died 950 of the Menrovingian Dynasty and his mother was the daughter of a Jewish exilarch of Babylon making him a descendant of both the Old and New Testament Biblical Blood Lines. This made him direct a descendant from not only the Menrovingians, but also that of the Davidic Dynasty of Judea. This combination of unique genealogy made Gerbert a very special boy in the eyes of his family.
Gerbert’s descendants are the Abbot-Counts of Aurillac, Gerald of Aurillac (or Saint Gerald). It was a 100 years before the First Crusade and Knights Templar had formed that he had preached the necessity of a Crusade with the Peace of God movement. Therefor, Pope Sylvestor II would be the first person who communicated the facts that Christians were being abused and killed in the Middle East. In 1001, he would arrange with the Fatimid Caliph, for a group of clerics and knights from his various chronicling orders to make an expedition to Syria and the Holy Land. In the end, he would be murdered and the hand of his adversaries by a lethal dose of posion in the Vatican.
Here is a short list of accomplishments of Gerbert;
- First French Pope
- Gerbert transferred royal power from the Carolingians back to the Merovingians
- Author of the consecration given by the Church to the dynasty of Hugh Capet (987)
- First one to arming Christendom for the purpose of securing Holy Sepulchure from the Infidels
- Gerbert who studied in Moorish Spain and had made a brazen head before the formation of the Templars
- This same head appears again and again in history but ONLY after Gerbert was said to have constructed one and the Templars were said to be in possession of such a head and also graduates of the Spanish Sufi magical schools.
- As Pope, Gerbert Confers the Royal Title and appointed Kings which was revolutionary in the Papacy
- Constituted Hungary and Poland as Christian kingdoms
- King Robert II of France (993-1031) then appointed the son of Sylvester II, also known as Gérard of Riom (Later corrupted to Count Ebles I of Roucy) as the new Catholic Pope Nicholas II (1012-1046)
- The Gerald
- The dynasty he initiated, and its collateral branches, would rule France down to the French Revolution
Without the actions of Gerbert of Aurillac as Pope Sylvestor II, the infamous Brazen head we now call Baphomet would have never existed and the subsequent militarization of the Poor Knights of the Temple into the Knights Templar for the recovery of the Holy Land may simply have never of happened. This would make Gerbert one of the most important and also the least honored Templars in history because he had brought so much to the order as the first true Pontifex Baphomet Maximus or Pope Templar.
Let us give praise to Gerbert of Aurillac as a martyr for light, truth and for all of us descendants of this ancient learning. A true master of illumination. Amen.
Moe is the founder of GnosticWarrior.com. He is a father, husband, author, martial arts black belt, and an expert in Gnosticism, the occult, and esotericism.