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Ishtar Today

The cult of Ishtar is not dead. It is alive and will continue to be alive as long as there is one person who honors her. 
It has changed over time of course, just as humanity has changed, just as science has evolved. Humanity has acquired new knowledge. Only a fool would take the myths of pre-industrialized tribal societies literally, like the followers of today's world religions do.
However Ishtar has not changed. The essence of her cult has stayed the same. Ishtar is the goddess of love and war. She stands for all life is about - passion and struggle, sex and violence. These are the principles that we honor. She is no goddess for the weak, but for the strong; not for a herd of sheep, but for the wolves.

Two Paths

There are two distinct approaches to religion and philosophy. They are based on two contrary premises - the concept of collectivism and the concept of individualism. Depending on which of these two premises a belief system is based on, it will necessarily go into a completely different direction, even if we assume that either belief system follows strictly logical conclusions. Different premises lead to different conclusions.
Therefore we have two different paths that belief systems can follow. Either path will lead into an opposite direction with quite contrary conclusions.

The path of collectivism, of altruism, of integration with the divine is the Right Hand Path; while the path of individualism, of selfishness and of preservation of the self is called the Left Hand Path. 

 

Left Hand Path Right Hand Path
Characteristics:
  • Selfishness and rejection of altruistic ethics.
  • Belief that all individuals are ultimately separate and the will to preserve and advance the self.
  • Partnership with deities instead of subservience.
  • Includes sexual practices
  • Moral relativism.
  • Rejection or rebellion against any supernatural mechanism of retribution.
  • Conviction that each individual is responsible for his own happiness by mastery of the physical world.
Characteristics:
  • Altruism and obedience to a moral code.
  • Belief in one origin of all existence and the need to reintegrate into this origin.
  • Belief in a higher power and obedience to its will.
  • Oppresses sexuality
  • Universal concept of good and evil.
  • Supernatural mechanism of retribution like karma or Last Judgment according to the assessment of moral decisions made in one's lifetime.
  • The need for salvation and the treat of damnation.
Examples:
  • Vamachara Tantra
  • Dugpa Buddhism
  • Sophism
  • Epicureanism
  • Existentialism
  • Philosophy of Nietzsche
  • Satanism and Demonolatry
  • Setianism
  • Cult of Astarte
Examples:
  • Dakshinachara Tantra
  • Theravada and Mahayana Buddhism
  • Hinduism
  • Platonism
  • Judaism
  • Christianity
  • Islam
  • Confucianism 
  • Zoroastrism

In ancient times the cult of Inanna and Ishtar sometimes showed characteristics of a Right Hand Path religion due to syncretistic influences by the cult of the mother goddess. But the aspect of a mother goddess is actually alien to her and had rather political reasons.
With the victory of monotheism the goddess returned more and more to her genuine nature. During medieval times she was interpreted as a demon prince named Astaroth. And indeed, from a modern point of view she has far more in common with Satanism than with other neo-pagan traditions, which obey to the principles of reciprocal ethics (e.g. Wicca).

We have to take in consideration that Ishtar belongs to the Left Hand Path in order to understand what her meaning is today.

The Temples of Ishtar

Like many other Left Hand Path religions, the ancient cult of Ishtar and Astarte used sexual rituals like the celebration of the hieros gamos to communicate with the realm of the gods and to gain spiritual energy. Sacred prostitutes, so called hierodules, were employed in the temples of the goddess for this purpose. The last of these temples were shut down when the Christian Emperor Constantine assumed the throne of the Roman Empire.

Today we hardly find any temple dedicated to Ishtar. But isn't 'Ishtar' just a word? Isn't it a name that changed many times throughout the centuries? From Inanna to Ishtar to Ashtoreth to Astarte to Mylitta, every culture and language had a different name for the same goddess. Names are symbols and keep changing, but the reality that they describe does not change with them. And so Ishtar may be unknown for many people today, but what she stands for, may be not unknown to them. If you think there were no temples of Ishtar in our time anymore, it is because there are no buildings with her name written over their doors. It is because you only look for her symbols, but symbols have changed. If you look for the temples of Ishtar, you have to look for her spirit, for all that what the name Ishtar once stood for. Then you will easily find the temples of Ishtar in our times.

Wherever prostitution is practiced in a proper ambience, there is a temple of Ishtar. Ishtar is the divine hierodule and the goddess of prostitution and every prostitute today who practices her profession with dignity is a modern hierodule. Only those who are ignorant or blind can't see the temples of Ishtar that are in places all over the world, where sexuality is celebrated as a divine gift. Every time you visit such a place, you pay tribute to the goddess.

If you think, today's prostitution has been profanized and turned into merely a business, while the ancient temples where sacred places of spirituality, you have a distorted and idealized picture of the past. People were not different in the past from how they are today. Temples in the past had often been turned into businesslike operations and hierodules were abused in undignified circumstances, as it happens with today's prostitutes.  
Therefore you, as a servant of Ishtar, shall not be like the hypocrites. When you visit a prostitute, then you shall do it in a proper way and pay respect to the woman, who gives you pleasure. You shall be generous, because the money you give is an offering to the goddess. And if you are a prostitute than you shall practice your profession voluntarily and with dignity and pride.

And whoever offends or despises a prostitute shall forever be cursed.

Praised be Ishtar, and praised be her beauty and the pleasure she gives to mankind.

And one day there will be a new temple of Ishtar, where not just her spirit survives, but where also her name is remembered.

The Six Classes

Alpha
Beta
Gamma
Delta
Epsilon
Zeta
Priests
Hierodules
Ascardan
Adherents
Worthless
Vermin
temple owner, manager
sex-worker
temple employees
temple clients
anybody else
those opposed to the temple business
to be obeyed
to be adored
to be respected
to be respected
to be despised
to be killed

The Warrior Goddess

There is a second aspect of Ishtar, which is much harder to find in our times. She is a goddess of war, but where are the warriors today? There are still soldiers, slaves to fight wars with leased weapons, technicians of death and destruction, but there are no warriors. The state has emasculated its citizens. The state monopoly on violence has turned everybody into a serf. The citizens - unarmed and conditioned to cowardice - are forbidden to defend themselves and their honor. Man has become like a herd of sheep, fearful and permanently concerned about the safety of his life. How can a warrior live in a decadent world like this?

The modern state is an illegitimate criminal organization with the purpose to oppress its citizens. A warrior of Ishtar does not recognize any of its authorities, laws or institutions. No matter, if a state claims to be secular or not, the evil spirit of the Great Demon, obsessed with the desire to enslave humanity, reveals itself in every aspect of the modern police state. When the Ina Palκ Ištar will be reestablished, the current world order will be destroyed and its slaves will mercilessly be drowned in an ocean of blood.
A warrior of Ishtar is always prepared, always carries a weapon and never bows down before any authority other than his goddess.

Reason and Superstition

Only a fool would take more than 5000-years-old myths and legends from pre-industrial civilizations literally. Still today's world religions believe in scriptures written by men who believed the earth to be flat. What insights could one expect from such writings others than historical information? Nevertheless there are countless fools who seriously hope to find the ultimate truth in them. And even neo-pagans are not free from such irrational superstition. The majority believes in childish concepts like magick, witchcraft, primitive tribal rituals and fantasy characters from the world of fairy tales.

This is certainly not, what Ishtar stands for. The goddess can look back to the beginning of written history. And many of those ancient legends must look funny for us. However in their time, they represented all knowledge of humanity. In one of these legends it is Ishtar who steals the ME from the gods and gives them to humanity. The ME were the totality of ancient wisdom, technology and science. So it was Ishtar who taught science and technology to our ancestors. Therefore the path of the goddess has always been logic and reason, not superstition and irrationality. This is not different today as it was in ancient times. A follower of Ishtar obeys logic and reason. He keeps focused and does not get distracted by irrational emotions, and unconscious wishes in improper moments. He acknowledges his passions and desires, but he does not lose control and pursues them with logic and common sense. This is what makes him superior to the irrational fools.

May the flame of reason illuminate your path.