About Evolution of the names of the Ancient Gods

The ancient gods humans worshipped have common origins all across the world. They were ubiquitious. They were not figments of human imagination, nor folk tales.

They were ancient divine beings of unknown (terrestrial or extraterrestrial) origin who gave and ordained life, spirituality and protection to the common people and mortals on the planet.

The only aspect of their worship that changed were their names and their attributes, based on the ethnic group which adopted them into their pantheon.

The same gods appear in almost every culture across the world in times when travel and communications did not exist and there was no way between cultures to have shared their “divine stories”.

Such was the “flood” story which was discovered by chance in the epic of Gilgamesh on 3000-year-old clay tablets, which explain precisely the story of the deluge, a long time before even the Bible was written, with different names (Noah substituted with Utnapishtim) and in much more detail. Such is also the evolution of the name and worship of the goddess Anahid and her journey from the dawn of civilization as we know it, the Sumerians and the Aryans, to the Armenian Highlands.

SUMERIAN ORIGINS: Her most ancient origins stem from Sumer and Akkad, the Mesopotamian epic of Creation, the Atrahasis. Named NINHURSAG, she was instrumental in the creation of the human race. Later, in ancient Babylonia, INANNA and ISHTAR appear.

Her name derives from the Sumerian phrase NIN-A-NAK, meaning “Lady of the sky (or Heaven)”. She is also called ANATU, and later NANE. In the proto-Euphratean Hurrian civilization she is the mother goddess HANNAHANNAH. As we see, all these names have common roots and phonetics.

ARYAN ORIGINS (AVESTA): she was an angel called Ardәwī Sūrā Anāhitā (ARDVI SURA ANAHIDA), or “Waters mighty and immaculate”

ARDVI = “Moist, brilliant waters”, also the name of a sacred mythical river in ancient Iran which gave rise to all the earth’s rivers and oceans). SURA = Powerful, mighty AN-AHITA = Pure, immaculate, undefiled.

In the OLD PERSIAN pantheon, she is the creator and guardian angel of springs and waters, the “mater magna” of the world, named ARDVISUR ANAHITA. She was the daughter of AHURA MAZDA, and together with MEHR, her brother, they formed the “HOLY TRINITY” of the Zoroastrian religion. In NEW PERSIAN she is NAHID.

In Armenia, ANAHID lost the warlike nature from her predecessor goddess Nane, and her Babylonian predecessor Ishtar. She also lost her title as protector of “waters and rivers” from her Persian counterpart.

She assimilated local attributes, assumed the style of Armenians mothers, and was called “Great Lady Anahit”. She became the most loved and honored Armenian goddess. She is the golden mother, patroness of women, the MAGNA MATER of the Armenians, or MEDZAMOR.

Mother of all virtues, beauty, fertility, fecundity, healing, and wisdom, protector of the womb and of children. (Here I am inclined to say that she preserved her title of “protector of the waters” in reference to the “waters of the womb” which give life). Together with her father ARAMAZD and her brother MIHR, they formed the “holy trinity” of the Armenian pantheon.

Her most sacred temple was at EREZ, where there was a golden statue erected for her worship. She was so revered in all of ancient Armenia, that Greek historians went so far as to call the region ANAITIS CHORA (Αναϊτης χώρα) or “country of Anahid“ and in Armenian, Անահտական գաւառ. It is also interesting to note that being a “protector of waters”, these temples were so close to the headwaters of the Euphrates, which as we know arise from the Armenian Highlands and provides life and irrigation to the whole region, including Mesopotamia.

Here is where the MIGHTY and life-giving river was the cleanest and HER WATERS most IMMACULATE. (ARDVI SURA ANAHITA)

by Joseph Sarkissian

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