Russell and Pyramids

by TheEdge 27 Replies latest jw friends

  • TheEdge

    I bet this is all old hat to you regulars on the board, but occassionally when I look for something, I find more than I expect. Was mulling over the 1914 thing (607 etc) and discovered :-

    I thought this was a hoax, then clicked on the link to ''Thy Kingdom Come'' - so NOW what to believe? That 1914 is a year based on the dimensions of a pyramid (Russell's little hobby) - BIZARRE.

  • rebel8

    That does sound very interesting. I couldn't get the link to work--are you able to post a quote?

  • freedom96

    Many beliefs held by the WTS have orgins that they would rather not talk about, let alone anyone actually know about.

  • tata

    When I read that for the first time I didn?t want to believe. Then I was frustrated that there were the number 1914 came from. So I learned, (late but I did it); always investigated and questioning everything, like they ?teach us? and like the bible said about the people in Berea.

  • TheEdge

    rebel8 - the link works ok for me (you have to click (x) out of first page that comes up) - tried to copy and paste, but that didn't work - sorry.

  • The Thinker
    The Thinker

    Thats not the all ! Approx about 5 years ago, there was a Watchtower main articule where they said "..some even at the time were measuring the lenghts of the passages of the pyramids.." . So with that comment the WT was putting the blame on others and not telling the readers that it was Charles Russel himself that was doing the measuring, they wrote the articule in a way so as to give the impression that it was others and NOT themselves, the 'Faith and Discret' slave who gives the food at the porper time.

    I don't have the WT CD with me at the momoent but I can find it easeriiy later if you's are interested.

  • AlanF

    TheEdge said:

    : I thought this was a hoax, then clicked on the link to ''Thy Kingdom Come'' - so NOW what to believe? That 1914 is a year based on the dimensions of a pyramid (Russell's little hobby) - BIZARRE.

    After reading your comment, I took a look at the website you linked to. It contains several misrepresentations, although it also contains some solid information.

    First, Russell's 1914 and other early calculations were not based on measurements of the Great Pyramid, but on misinterpretations of the Bible and secular history. These chronological ideas were in place in Russell's thinking largely by late 1876. Sometime in the 1880s Russell and his wife became familiar with various writings on pyramidology, and they adapted the information to their own religious ideas. Russell "found" that pyramidology "confirmed" his 1914 and other dates. Thus, so far as Russell was concerned, pyramidology was an independent confirmation of an already established chronology.

    Second, the website claims that "Russell introduced occultism into his religion by teaching that the pyramids in Egypt are divine omens." This is nonsense, because at the time, pyramidology had nothing whatsoever to do with occultism. Pyramidology was seen by many Christians in Britain and America to be a confirmation of mainstream Christianity. Indeed, its most outspoken proponents were well known and highly respected Christians. For example, one John Taylor wrote a book called The Great Pyramid in 1859 that kicked off the whole movement. His thesis was that the Great Pyramid of Gizeh contained confirmation of the Bible. One Piazzi Smyth, Astronomer Royal of Scotland, in 1864 wrote the book Our Inheritance in the Great Pyramid. He expanded greatly on Taylor's ideas and even mounted expeditions to Egypt. He wrote a number of other books on his travels, and his first book went through many editions. It's still published today. In 1877 a famous Evangelical Lutheran minister named Joseph Seiss published Miracle in Stone, in which he argued that the Great Pyramid contains God's message for Christians. This book is also published to this day. Russell obviously got most of his information about pyramidology from Smyth and Seiss. Only after about 1900 did pyramidology begin to have the taint of occultism, so that by the 1920s there were many truly crackpot authors combining pyramidology and occultism. I believe it was that connection that forced J. R. Rutherford to jettison pyramidology in 1929.

    Third, the website states: "Russell recommended his followers read the book, Angels and Women. He personally supervised its editing and said it was beneficial because it throws light on certain Biblical subjects." This is wrong, because that book wasn't even published until 1924 -- eight years after Russell's death. The truth is that Russell was mildly interested in a book called Seola which was published in 1878 by a Mrs. J. G. Smith of Vermont. She claimed that a fallen angel dictated the book to her. The book was extensively revised by a Bible Student, almost certainly under the supervision of J. F. Rutherford, in the early 1920s, and published in 1924 under the new title Angels And Women. You can find an extensive article on this here: .

    My advice is that when you read webites like the one you linked to, doublecheck its claims before you accept them. There are enough resources available on the Web and on the JWD board to make this reasonably painless.


  • The Thinker
    The Thinker

    I don't agree with you AlanF. Charles russel did measure the lenghts of the passags in the pyramid. Read "studies in the Striptures" Vol 3 Chp10. There are photo copys of those pages on many EX-JW websites. I'm sure even the watchtower-observer has one. I can supply one later as I am at my work place and not at home.


  • garybuss

    It seems the date of 1914 was first accepted by Russell, then he looked for support. A read of the book Three Worlds and Volume 3 of Studies will explain the origins very well.

    Three Worlds here:

    Volume 3 here:

  • The Thinker
    The Thinker

    there are lots of places. ( i don't know how to cut and paste on this board yet) go to Vol3 and then Chp 10. when you all all the text, just type in "Ctrl F" and do a serch for 1914, it will take you stright to the point where Russel takes about the Pyramids and 1914.


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