Traveling London is full of history at every turn. When you grow up in the United States, it is valuable to go and visit the motherland, to get an idea of where the country came from. Big Ben, Parliament, and the London Eye are all a great diversion for tourists and great to look, especially in the holiday season. If you care about that sort of thing.
For me, I was more interested in the history of the history at the good ol’ British Museum. So I ran over there just about as quickly as I could.
Namely, I wanted to see all the artifacts the British had stolen from all over the world: from Ancient Egypt to Greece. Relics like the Rosetta Stone and Egyptian mummies or Statues of Athena and Zeus that sat outside the Parthenon.
But, as a Platonic Philosopher, of course I have a few priorities. So I went straight to Socrates to say Hello and thank him for everything HE, Plato, the Parmenideans. and Pythagoreans (I talked to him about quite a few things actually) had ever done in the name of Wisdom to benefit not only their own divine journey of the Soul back to The One/The Good in the Most Divine manner but also ours.
Next, in the spirit of Wisdom, I set out to find anything I could with respect to Egypt, Greece, and Ancient Mysteries. The first thing which was interesting was the Rosetta Stone. It was originally stolen in 1799 in the Napoleonic expedition to Egypt. It of course is the famous stone that eventually led scholars to decipher the hieroglyphic language of Egypt.
When the British defeated the French in Egypt in 1801, the original stone came into British possession under the Capitulation of Alexandria. This was the deal in which the French surrendered and gave the British everything they had stolen from their exploits. In this way the Rosetta Stone was stolen and stolen again until now where it has been on display since 1802. In the current day, Egypt has been asking for it back since 2003.
Standing in front of it does instill a sense of wonder and awe within the individual and one can begin to appreciate the magnitude of the history. But of course this was not all they got. There are artifacts everywhere.
The Egyptian coffins really begin to make you wonder about the mysteries and the ascension of the spirit back to the source of it’s Being. The wondrous precision with which they made things, especially the Pyramids, is mind blowing. And it is commonly known among engineers in the world that we can not recreate those structures with our modern technology. When you know this, you can feel you are in the presence of a Divine Knowledge unfolding into the physical realm, which is how the Egyptians saw it as well.
For the rest of the day I turned my attention towards Ancient Greece. The vases, the art, the sculptures, were all magnificent and I could feel the divine state of mind behind the makers of this culture as well. Well, at least when you understand that Zeus is the personification of the Divine Mind, you then can enter into that realm from the symbol, by working backwards from the manifestation in the physical to the Eternal Being of the Divine Mind in the non-physical. And this is what happens for a Platonist upon gazing at Zeus.
For the Greeks, no one ever said you have to believe in Zeus to receive Eternal Life. No, this is a Christian mind control game. For the Greeks, they knew that Zeus was a representation of a state of mind, a Divine State of Mind, the state of mind of the Maker of the cosmos. It is true that we need to understand the myths properly so that they do not mislead the youth as Plato says, but when you do, they are a doorway into the Divine.
No day at the museum would be complete without the greatest Steal of them all, the Parthenon Marbles. The Parthenon Marbles or Elgin Marbles, are a collection of Classical Greek marble sculptures that were originally part of the temple of the Parthenon on the Acropolis of Athens which was dedicated to the Goddess Athena.
They were taken in 1801 by Thomas Bruce, 7th Earl of Elgin, who obtained a controversial permit from the Ottoman government, which then ruled Greece. From 1801 to 1812, Elgin’s agents removed about half of the surviving sculptures of the Parthenon and transported them to Britain. Greece has been for years trying to return one of the world’s greatest cultural monuments to it’s rightful home. In 2014, UNESCO offered to mediate between Greece and the United Kingdom in resolving the dispute of the Elgin Marbles. Of course, it was turned down by the UK:
YOU KNOW WHAT THEY SAY, “WE STOLE THEM FAIR AND SQUARE! KEEP YOUR HANDS OFF”
In terms of Platonic Wisdom, again as with Zeus, it is important that we remember what she represents. As the Goddess of Wisdom, she sprung forth from Divine Mind, and out of the head of Zeus fully clad with armor and ready for battle. In Platonic Metaphysics, it is important to remember that Athena was the daughter of Zeus not from intercourse, but that when Zeus had in mind the making of a world through the LOGOS, his first thought was Athena.
It is great to see these amazing objects and to see that they are preserved in a museum. However, the question does not go away, “Are they in the correct museum?” Quite simply the answer is, NO. The British, in the colonizing of over half the world, were no benevolent ruler and cared little if nothing about cultures or traditions. Not only did they destroy and exploit, natural resources and people, where ever they went, but also took back to England anything they thought fit and could get their grubby hands on.
If England ever wanted to do the right thing, a good place to start would be returning everything they have stolen from all over the world during their time as conqueror. This would be a sign of respect and apology for abusing, exploiting, and destroying of cultures and traditions.