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Guardians of the Gate

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Guardians of the Gate

Attendants of the Portal

Legends and myths of those attending the ‘god’ or hero in their transformation or travel to the netherworld or land of the gods are both written and depicted in various cultures. The archetypes shown span continents and centuries; even over thousands of years. The attendees or helpers of the gateway are primarily feminine or androgynous at times, sometimes in male/female pairs. Only in later times under patriarchal influence did the depictions turn male, as well as some of the attending symbolic devices either change or outright disappear.





Key factors in the depictions that usually have remained consistent over the ages are:

  • A central figure in some door, gateway, or between two columns.
  • Two attending figures (usually feminine) – with outstretched hands in pose (e.g. Reiki).
  • Occasionally the poses are one arm with hand extended - the other in downward angle. Maybe symbolic (force & form) or represents an opperational aspect. (see below of what appears to be some functional 'device'.)

  • In many images (Sumarian, Egyptian and Christian/Gnostic), there is an object (see below re: staff/rod) held in one (usually left) hand.

The attendant pairs:

  • Ishtar/Innana & Shamash/Utu [Akkadian/Sumerian]
  • Dumuzi (aka Tammuz) & Ningishzidda (aka Thoth) [Sumerian]
  • The Lamassu/Shedu [Mesopotamian] / AN.KAL [Sumerian] - Papsukkal/Isum [Akkadian]. Protector "tetramorphs" (winged man, bull, lion) placed at the gates.
  • Isis & Nephthys  / (Osiris pillar) or outward facing lions [Egypt]
  • Osiris as the gaurdian of the gate to the Duat (otherworld) [Egypt]
  • Ptah & Sekhmet [Egypt]
  • Maat & Thoth - Ark of Ra [Egypt]
  • Cherubim/Seraphim [Semitic]  - note: middle ages depict Moses/Elijah
  • Itzamna & Ixchel [Mayan]
  • Amaru Meru & Amara-mara [Pre-Incan]
  • Heimdall (Asgard/Heaven) & Thor (Midgard/Earth) [Nordic]

Note that in some cases the pair is shown on each side (2D/front view) but in some are on each end of the portal (3D/side view), which might be the actual function. Those stated as on each end are Itzamna & Ixchel, and Heimdall & Thor.


Gateways (aka "Soul-doors") in Archeology & Mythologies:

  • Gilgamesh - Ur, Sumer
  • Amaru Muru, Puerta de Hayu Marka (Doorway of the Gods) – Peru
  • Egyptian, various thresholds/gateways (doors to the afterlife); ‘Door to Eternity’ - Habu Medinet /Luxor, Egypt
  • Gate of the Sun - Tiahuanaco, Bolivia
  • Mheri-Dur (Door of Mher) - Turkey
  • Yazilikaya - Eskisehir, Turkey
  • Nuapa Huaca - Peru
  • Bifröst - the Rainbow Bridge - (Nordic)






The Device – the Rod or Staff

There are multiple depictions across cultures and time of the 'One' holding a rod/staff in one hand (usually the left) with the other hand outstreched in a form of blessing/beaming transmission or sometimes in the form of a Mudra. What was the staff? ...a form of directed power or 'electricity' (e.g Moses's serpent [Nahash] staff - an object that 'spits' energy); application of life-spark force (e.g. Ankh attached to Staff of Ptah). 

  • Ankh, UAS, Staff of Ptah. (see Opening of the Way)
  • Tet Pillar, Djed.(see also Phoenician/Hebrew letter Ξ Samech “Support”; and צ Tzadi, (צדק Tzadik “Righteous one”)
  • The ‘Rod and the Staff’ (Egyptian)
  • The Cross: Latin, Tau, Celtic, Solar, Orthdox
  • The Caduceus - cross w/two intertwined serpents; Moses's staff and 'raised' serpent.
  • Rod and Ring (Ahura Mazda, etc.)







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