Messages to Humanity — A Dispatch on Numerous Important Subjects for Evolving Earthlings

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Syrian Women, Palmyra, Temple of Ba'al and Fertility Goddesses

Sabeen and Miriam's Damascus, Syria home was a tiny minuscule brick block affair. Apple trees surrounded the perimeter and were covered in pink blossoms this March day. The aged neighbor had a few ancient olive trees in his front yard. They had a postage stamp size garden with plantings of peppermint, parsley, chicory, and sage. Peppermint tea was being brewed when I arrived, and delicious smells of stuffed green peppers wafted out of the minuscule kitchen. Deeply embraced, Alternate Agnes felt immediately at home.

The peppers were served with couscous made with parsley fresh from the garden. First, we ate and then we talked. I wanted to know about women’s rights in Syria and was told that Syria was under emergency law and that most constitutional laws had been suspended for women and all citizens. The system of government was non-democracy and women’s rights were meager, I deduced. Sabeen, beautiful in western dress of slacks and white shirt, told me they were Christian Arabs, and she had a university degree and was an elementary school teacher. She had attended Damascus University, and I learned that all universities and colleges were government-operated, but that other Arab nations had been applying to open private universities. I asked Sabeen if she had to pay for her education. She replied, “I paid only a very small portion as my marks were above average and I was a good student.” Mama Miriam, a large masculine looking woman, with a Roman nose nodded her head in affirmation. She spoke very little English, but was fluent in French, this country having been occupied by the French from the First World War until 1943.

“What is the ratio of women to men in the universities?” I asked. Sabeen said; “The percentage of women attending is very low. Women are supposed to have traditional roles, raising the children, cooking, being at home to attend to their husbands’ wishes.” 

“And the focus of education these days of 1993?” I asked “The focus of education is medicine and technology now,” said Sabeen. I asked her why she was not married as she looked to be about 40 years old. She laughed. So far, she had avoided marriage and preferred to live with her mother and brother whose wife had passed away. I asked her if I needed to be concerned about dress and hair covering in Syria, as it appeared the only western women I had seen in Damascus worked for various UN agencies and they dressed modestly. She said that women immodestly dressed would be very much frowned upon, and the men would hiss at me if I was not with my husband, although the Syrian government was not strict about a dress code for western travelers. The hissing I had already experienced when several of my friends and I dressed modestly walked home after dinner one evening. Unaccompanied by a man. This intrepid traveler, felt like grabbing the 'hisser' by the throat and lecturing, which of course could have had me immediately deported back to Canada, or dangling from a cross in the Damascus Square. . .

I experienced incredible warmth and hospitality in this humble home. It was normal to show one’s traditional Arab generosity and consideration for strangers, and this also seemed so in Syria. I asked if there was a rise in fundamentalism, to which she replied nervously, “Yes, yes, there has been a re-introduction to Islamic Law recently, and that has severely affected the status of women.”

When I asked whether it was possible to be openly intelligent or have a lack of sympathy for the government--I was thinking about other Arab countries’ policies of certain imprisonment or beatings for any such activity or connection--Sabeen said the Syrian government was strongly enforcing imprisonment for those who were perceived that way. She said that traditional values, discriminatory laws, and an authoritarian government deprived women of many basic social and legal rights. But she was hopeful that someday things would change in her country because the Syrian Women’s League had many strong women working for justice and equality for women!

Wishing I could do something to assist these women, as I returned to my friend’s house, trying to think of a way to help with the situation, I clearly heard again, “You can write,” and I made a promise to myself to do so.

The next day found us heading out of Damascus and bound for the Syrian countryside. Swedish and Finnish friends had joined us, and we had a UN minivan on loan. When we left industrious but peaceful spread out Damascus, a lonely desert stretched out before us, and we were often passing through deserted wadis. We drove for two hours beside brown sand hills, seeing no one—and not a single vehicle. Neither trees nor plants to greet us either, but the sun shone above us brightly. Other than some snoozers snoring in our UN minivan, there wasn't a sound either as we continued to motor through the quiet deserted Syrian desert. We began following a ridge of mountains alongside us to the west to the Mediterranean side.

Fifty kilometers this side of Palmyra, we turned east towards Iraq, and when we reached a high point of land, I could see the oasis of Palmyra afar. It was protected to the north and west by another chain of jagged mountains, and two high mountains, Jebel Hayyam and Jebel al-Mazar, rose steeply to the west towards the Lebanese border. To the east, the stunning oasis that was Palmyra spread out, and then it was seemingly infinite miles of desert again. Like a crown, 500,000 olive trees, date palms, and pomegranate trees surrounded the immense expanse of the ruins of ancient Palmyra.

We descended into the valley, and rising to greet us were golden columns of granite, also towers, tombs, and ramparts of this ancient caravanserai city. The most imposing structure of all, the massive Temple of Ba'al, lay directly behind the hotel we would be staying at. Perched like an eagle’s nest on a high peak in the lasts rays of daylight, I could see an ancient Arab citadel shimmering off to the west. Darkness was descending speedily so we investigated the first tumulus we reached. Here, dead Palmyrenes were laid out on wooden racks and stacked layer upon layer in the tumulus. It reminded me of a huge food dehydrating operation. A dehydrating process it was, but not for food and all bodies had now been removed.

After quickly hiking to a precipitous mountainside for the final evening view, the six of us stood in awe, looking to the ruins of ancient Palmyra in the distance. What a sight! Pink light spread across the white marble and gold limestone columns that were still standing. In the distance we could see the new city of Palmyra, a city of 10,000 people. My Syrian guide book had noted that 90 percent of the Syrian population was rural. Having a quick look at the Temple of Ba'al left me shivering with fright and with some foreboding and panic that I allowed myself to feel, but only briefly. There was a depth of power and mystery here that I was not sure I wished to tap into!


We soon checked into the new Cham Palace Hotel, a large beautiful structure that was part of a Syrian chain of hotels, the only ones we could stay at. I unpacked a few things and tried to get some quick shut eye before dinner, but I could not sleep. So, I meditated. Almost immediately, I saw phantoms about me, and they all wanted my attention! They all wanted to speak to me at once! Whatever was transpiring? Did they try to rouse everyone, or did they know me? I shivered as the thought of being here before in a past life seemed plausible. I had felt so connected to all the Hittite statues I had seen and now I was here in the land of the ancient Sumerians, Hittites, Niburians and Annunaki. Ba'al means 'god' and the Ba'al gods were solar deities who came to Earth to play and build temples and have intercourse with Earth's goddesses.

I eventually got up, frustrated, and decided to take a shower. A very large, spooky spirit that was seen in a flash, looked like a statue I had seen. He stormed after me to the bathroom, but thankfully stayed outside the door to leave me to have a private shower! I would deal with ‘him’ later.

Jumping forward to 2006, it was while in retreat at the portal and Ascended Master site,  Mt. Shasta, California, that I suddenly clairaudiently heard, "You are known in the higher dimensions as Ishtar!". Her other names were Aphrodite, Astarte, Asherah, Innana; and she was a fertility goddess whose consort was the Middle Eastern Ba'al, Hadad.

*To be continued.

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National best-selling author, Advanced Reiki Master, Fire Priestess, Conference Speaker, Metaphysician Master, Agnes Toews-Andrews, has been researching the Goddess, the paranormal and metaphysical at home in Canada and at sacred sites around the world since 1987. It was while working with energy/Reiki that her clairsentient and clairaudient abilities began to awaken. A world traveler, she is the author of 8 non-fiction spiritual books and 1 book of paranormal fiction. At home in the question mark, Agnes has known since the age of 14 while watching a sunset in rural British Columbia that she was to be an 'Activator' of humanity and in 1989 made a commitment to be a Lightworker. Also a co-creative Devic gardner, macrobiotic consultant, she is the proud mother of two amazing kids and grandmother of five even more amazing grand kids. She currently resides in the Selkirk Mountains in the West Kootenays, British Columbia, Canada.  


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