The Red Sea (Reed Sea) Is Your Blood by AB Kuhn
The Red Sea Is Your Blood by Alvin Boyd Kuhn
*Typed and edited by Juan Schoch for educational research purposes from New Outlook, circa 1953. This notice is not to be removed.
The ancient sages who indicted the revered “Holy Scriptures” of antiquity wrote little in the spirit of what we call history but wrote almost entirely in the literary method known as the allegorical. Their concern in the field of religious writing was not to record objective historical events, but rather to dramatize aspects of man’s mystical experience by means of well and profoundly conceived pictorial representations, such as myths, allegories, dramas, number graphs and, to a surprising degree, astrological designs around the stellar constellations.
The characters in these structures took the part and enacted the role of the several elements in the actual drama of the linked divine-human entity who is man himself. It is, therefore, a gross mistake to assume, as Western scholarship has always done, that the ancients were simple-minded children who naively interpreted nature and human life in the terms of their omnipresent mythologies; conceived and believed by them as actual descriptions of real events. Better understanding is now coming to see the ancient myths as extremely ingenious and subtly-shrewd dramatic portrayals of the deepest verities of the human experience on its religio-mystical side.
When it is seen also that the bulk of the literature in our Jewish-Christian Bible is a collection of such allegorical material, the matter becomes of considerable moment for all Western civilization and culture. St. Paul, for instance, in the fourth chapter of Galatians, directly states that the story of Abraham, Sarah, Hagar, Isaac, and Ishmael in the Old Testament “is an allegory.” In the same chapter he declares Hagar to be “Mount Sinai which is in Arabia, the seal of our bondage.” Also in Revelation 11:8 the text recites that “Our Lord” was crucified in a city “allegorically (New translation) called Sodom and Egypt.” How “Our Lord” could be crucified in two places some 500 or more miles apart, has therefore to be “allegorically” interpreted since it cannot be done historically.
Of the most startling significance in instances in which the historical must yield to the allegorical, is the item of obvious symbolical and not historical reference known as the crossing of the Red Sea by the Israelites. Interest here is at once stunningly aroused by the prime fact that this Red Sea is no longer to be found in the Bible. Scholarship has at long last corrected a most glaring error and taken the name out of the text of Scripture. It is, however, only a matter of taking out what never was really in. The English name, Red Sea, had stood in the text, but the connotation which this name carried to Western readers was never in. For the words of the Hebrew manuscripts which had been translated “Red Sea” never actually meant the geographical body of water between Egypt and Arabia on the map. The name is now translated properly (in the Moffatt translation) as the “Reed Sea.”
Incontestable evidence of the correctness of this translation is found in any Hebrew dictionary. The words in the Hebrew manuscript texts are IAM SUPH. IAM means “sea, ocean water.” Does SUPH mean “red?” On the contrary decidedly green; for it is given as meaning “sedge, reeds, marsh grass, swamp grass.” In shocked surprise the general reader will ask how any translator could find a reason for translating SUPH “red.” The exposition should open all eyes to the methods of subtle indirection and poetic symbolism in which ancient scriptures were written, and spiritual states represented.
As said, the ancient sages wrote in a language of nature symbolism and pictorial depiction. Always they looked outside to find in nature a situation that would furnish an analogue of an inner mystical realization or spiritual law of the higher life of man. Having in mind right from the start that the body of water which the immortal soul of a human had to cross in its transition from the beginning to the end of its human pilgrimage was the blood of the human body itself, which is seven-eighths water and one-eighth earth, these poetically-minded writers found the exact parallel to the human body out in nature in a swamp, marsh, or meadow, where water and earth are interblended. And in such a place reeds grow! Purely on natural analogy, poetically viewed, the body was typified as the “Reed Sea.” But obviously the early translators understood that the reference was to the human body-blood, and that being red in color, they felt privileged to translate IAM SUPH as the “Red Sea.”
Doubtless to many readers this interpretation will seem at first glance to be far-fetched and fanciful, even far too flimsy for serious acceptance. So it is desirable to buttress its legitimacy by citing additional material from the Scriptures that link immediately in with the rendition.
Both in Revelation and elsewhere, reference is made to a divine fire – invariably the symbol of spirit-soul power – which is to descend from above and enter into “the ocean which is on the border of the earth and turn the sea into blood.” Here, says the interpreter, the allegorical method fails utterly, since the oceans are salt water and not blood. But hold! It is precisely the reverse; for the interpretation fails historically,– since the actual oceans are not blood – and is found, most remarkably, to be true allegorically! Not, to be sure, in the earth’s oceans has the sea been turned into blood but in another place – and the very place where all Biblical meaning truly heads up – the sea water has been turned into blood: in the veins and arteries of the human body.
For the biological stream of evolving organic life began in the sea salt water and now in man, the highest product of that evolution, that sea water has been turned into blood. Modern chemistry finds the mineral count out of blood similar to that of sea water. And salt water was administered for transfusion before blood itself was resorted to.
It is now known that the ancient Egyptians called the primal “waters of the firmament,” or the primordial sea of matter, “the lake of Sa.” This was the virginal source of the essence of matter. Out of this “womb of all things” issued organic forms of life in the progressive line of development. As all life on our globe simularly issued forth out of sea water, the latter became the universal symbol for virgin matter. As matter and water were thus the eternal mothers of all life, the goddesses of the mythologies were nearly all named after the sea, as Thallath (Gk: sea), Meri (Egyptian), Mary (Latin: Mare, the sea), and others.
But the etymology yields astonishing correlations. Our “sea” must be this s(e)a itself. From sa comes undoubtedly sa-lt also. As salt is a preservative, then comes sa-ve, sal-vation, sal-ve, sal-iva, sal-utary, sal-ubrious, sa-cred, sa-nctity, and so on. And by what does scripture tell us we are to be saved? By the blood! By the atoning blood! By the primal s(e)a water, transmuted into blood, blood charged by the growing power of the indwelling “Lamb of God,” or Christ nature in man, with spiritual dynamic and changed verily into the blood of divine life for man. Saved by the blood of the Lamb! And Lot’s wife, who looked back and therefore reverted to primal constituency, was turned into a pillar of salt!
Speculation can not overlook also the name of Sodom in immediate connection with this elucidation. With salt reading in chemistry NACL, and the NA meaning sodium, it seems obvious that Sodom is related to sodium. The great battle narrated in the Genesis chapter 14, in immediate connection with the Abraham-Lot “history” was fought in the “salt sea,” in the valley of Siddim, (that is, the salt sea).” And even Siddim is but one vowel removed from “Sodom.”
Do we face at last the truth, lost for ages, that this great battle is being fought, not in a salt marsh in some indeterminate ancient country, but verily in the human blood?
The human blood is the “salt sea;” your blood is the “Red sea”!