• Wed. Feb 28th, 2024

An ancient “portal to the underworld” was discovered in a cave in Israel

An ancient “portal to the underworld” was discovered in a cave in Israel

This cave is the source of legends and historical dramas.

Archaeologists have discovered evidence of an ancient portal to the underworld near Jerusalem. According to a published study, the site contains ancient skulls, lamps, coins and artifacts dating back thousands of years. Harvard Theological Review.

The Teomim Cave, located in the Jerusalem Hills of Israel, has been studied since 1873. Experts have long suspected that the spring water flowing through the underground system was considered healing for those who used the cave between 4000 BC and the 4th century AD.

This cave is the source of legends and historical dramas. The site also served as a hideout for Jewish rebels during the Bar Kokhba Revolt in the 2nd century. Vice Informed.

Researchers have been excavating the cave since 2009 as part of a collaboration between Bar-Ilan University’s Martin (Sus) Department of Land of Israel Studies and Archeology and the Center for Cave Research at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

They found a number of fascinating objects dating back to around 2,000 years before the oil lamps, including pieces of three human skulls, 120 oil lamps, ancient pottery and Bronze Age weapons.

Archaeologists Eitan Klein and Boaz Sissou of the Israel Antiquities Authority and Bar-Ilan University now “cautiously suggest that the Theomim Cave was used for burials in the late Roman period, and that the cave may have served as a local oracle (Nechomantian) for this purpose.”

Researchers said the cave was used for funerals during the late Roman period and may have served as a local oracle.

“Following the collapse of the Bar Kokhba rebellion, the entire region underwent a radical transformation,” explained Professor Boaz Zissou.

Professor Sissou further explained, “Previously, this was a Jewish area, and then following the vacuum created in this area, Roman pagan elements entered, which may have been new rituals performed by the new Roman pagan settlers.”

“The Theomim Cave in the Jerusalem Hills has all the cultural and material elements necessary to serve as a portal to the underworld,” the researchers said in the study. Magic in the caves were considered possible portals to the underworld. Their purpose was to predict the future and conjure up the spirits of the dead.

“Since more than 100 ceramic oil lamps, but only three human skulls, have so far been found in Theomim Cave, we hypothesize that the primary cult focused on depositing oil lamps for chthonic powers.

Researchers have tried to identify the magic tricks, but said it is not easy. “Magic practice is used primarily in ritual acts performed by individuals to achieve a desired effect. Sometimes rituals must be performed in a specific location or require the use of specific material culture. Therefore, to locate magic in the archaeological context, physical evidence of those practices must be found.”

“The finds and their specific archaeological context provide a better understanding of the divination rituals that took place in the cave and shed more light on the spells of the Greek and Demotic magical papyri,” the researchers added.

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