Horse people. Likely, gold-plated horse people told the tale, took hold of the collective narrative (the word) that originated the idea, that work for food schemes were the road to the first heaven and earth’s pyramid building civilizations of virtually free, but greatly tormented labour and an opulent, bloated ruling class of inter breeding families that we now call the military industrial complex and second heaven; since the first heaven and earth had passed away with the collapse of Babylon and then Egypt bringing to an end the grain fueled pyramid empires. Empires that originated when animal herding tribes were pushed off more and more land put to grain cultivation by sedentary farmers whose villages were easily raided, by horse mounted arrow and spear armed tribesmen. Technological advantage and willing brutality then focused on acquiring grain wealth more efficiently than raiding parties could, produced a “new deal” with labour called empire. Maybe heaven isn’t the right word, maybe it is.
Heaven and hell, as we already know, didn’t exist until the hunter gatherers gave up paradise for a day job in the grain industry and the then infant trades specialization field or, if you prefer, a division of labour, but we are in fact talking about one tribe dividing up the other tribes and putting them to work. The Myopticon. The problem being that the arrangement is only amenable to one side of the “new deal,” “master race,” super power,” chosen few” bargain. If you have read a few origin myths you already know there isn’t a mention in any of being taken into slavery and abused by nasty folk. It would seem the great spirit, creator of all the universe, infused in all creation, animator of all life, even slugs, made no mention of the impending “division of labour” the chosen few would need to make for themselves a golden heaven apart and above the rest.
Division, as every miner knows, is essential to extract a mineral resource from ore. A miner breaks down the big rock mountain into movable pieces, then these into smaller pieces, crushes them smaller again, and again, then he loads tiny rocks into a ball mill and crushes them to dust. This he mixes with water and acids into a slurry and stirs it until he has “freed” the minerals from the rock. Then he extracts those minerals.
“The early Christian church encountered opposition from pagans such as Celsus who claimed “it is blasphemy…to say that the greatest God…has an adversary who constrains his capacity to do good” and says that Christians “impiously divide the kingdom of God, creating a rebellion in it, as if there were opposing factions within the divine, including one that is hostile to God”.
Round about the time horse people saw the convenience of monotheism they also created the conundrum of gods basic goodness having nowhere near enough terror value. Satan as an “idea” is a social solvent that divides good from evil. The trick of Satan in the garden is the adversarial approach to resource extraction built into the “new empire deal” but, only half of the new program of the new heaven and the new earth. Satan was conveniently also a dragon, terrorist, deceiver, trickster and demon possessor whose removal might require torture. A boondoggler too. 330 BCE is a date given in some places for the introduction of Satan, but, the exact date isn’t so important as the strains on imperial grain production that would by then have been manifest due to over grazing, poor soil care, habitual salting of enemy fields and a resulting desertification. Satan persists as an evolving personification of evil and we already know the love of money is the root of all evil, logically then, wherever money love is most concentrated Satan too will be most concentrated at that address.
Satan, by 1229, had become a sexy, handsome devil, but began life (330BCE) as a modified gryphon. A Gryphon was a winged hybrid creature whose job it was to guard kurgans (‘funerary mounds’) and more specifically the gold inside kurgans. The Gryphon to Satan operation simply involved pulling the Gryphon’s bird head off and sticking a horned mans head on in it’s stead. Nothing to it.
It used to be too, that hell was a thing of convenience vomited out of the heavens rather than boiling away underground. Evil adapts to the times.