Unsealing the Book of Revelation

Sender Spike
15 min readFeb 6, 2024

Book of Revelation (BoR) is truly a fascinating work. Full of strange symbolism, hidden meanings, scriptural references, and allusions to historic events, it’s perhaps the only early Christian writing that, as opposed to plethora of “inner” personal eschatologies attributed to Gnostic Christianity, explicitly deals with “outer” eschatology at social, economic, and political levels as well.

As I elaborated few years ago, its main message is the inevitable collapse of the “beastly” Sumerian socioeconomic system better known as Babylon, eradication of ideological perversion that drives it, and subsequent establishment, or rather restoration, of Kingdom of God on Earth through self-realization, aka knowledge of God.

Key Characters and Symbols

In order for the rest of this tractate to make sense, it is desirable to recapitulate the key points of said article, in which I identified several pivotal symbols and concepts.

  • Beast out of the sea: Seas being a synonym for people and nations, this is the actual hierarchic socioeconomic system “invented” in Sumer, which is the direct progenitor of all Babylonian empires, and which is the only surviving social model in place today. The only officially recognized, I must add, because while there are societies that operate with different paradigms, the planet wide social structure is based on nation states that derive directly from Sumerian city states.
  • Beast out of the earth: Otherwise also known as the False Prophet. This imagery denotes human as the creature that came out of earth. It stands in for the CEOs of the system to whom its authority is delegated, and who are responsible for masses to worship and obey the system itself. In ancient times it were predominantly priests, scribes, and rulers. Nowadays those social roles just wear different names and became more specialized, but, in their essence, they serve the same purpose.
  • Image of beast: This is what could be called legalism. In other words, the written legal norms that describe (i.e. paint an image of) and codify the ideology and rules of the socioeconomic system. This set of legal rules is oftentimes presented as universal as it borrows heavily from descriptions of truly universal causal laws, but then adds its own set of convenient regulations that are aimed at upholding the system as such (see e.g. Universal Human Rights which are, however, far from being universal as opposed to e.g. Torah). Hence, it can be viewed as a perversion of the true “universal law.” This set of artificial rules can also literally speak for itself — today even business entities have the same legal rights as human persons — and, unless you worship it, it can even kill you. And of course, it’s the CEOs who “breath life into it.”
  • Mark of the beast: Put it very simply, it’s money. Neither in the 1st century CE, nor today, you can buy or sell without it. The legalism described above prevents you from doing so because (at least) the taxes have to be paid with it. The form of money (coin, fiat, all its digital variations, etc.) is irrelevant — it just cannot be a sheep, not even a nugget of gold (which was already true also in times of Rome) — it must be a legally recognized currency. This is what causes people to wear a mark of sorts, either on their foreheads when they believe in money as a nice and useful tool, or on their hand when they just act in accordance with the demands of the system and its legalistic image.

Now, before I move on to explain the seals, trumpets, bowls, and the rest, it is necessary to identify a few more symbols lurking within the BoR.

  • Dragon: This is the lack of knowledge of God. It’s the primordial cosmic “force of error” which, to quote Gnostic Gospel of Truth, “brought about terror and fear. And terror became dense like a fog, so no one was able to see. Because of this, error became strong. But she worked on her material substance vainly, because she did not know the truth. She assumed a fashioned figure while she was preparing, in power and in beauty, the substitute for truth.” Some may call it Devil or Satan, some may call it The Snake. But at its root, it’s simply the ignorance of absolute truth that is ultimately responsible for the Sumerian system called Babylon.
  • Woman: Each and every woman in BoR represents a church tradition, or rather, particular tradition of teachings or ideology. Thus, the woman who gave birth and later fled into wilderness is clearly the original non-dual tradition within Judaism. (“She gave birth to a son, a male child, who ‘will rule all the nations with an iron scepter.’” As well as, “the rest of her offspring — those who keep God’s commands and hold fast their testimony about Jesus.”)
  • Harlot: Or, Babylon the Great. In other words, the original religious system that rides and directs the Sumerian socioeconomic “beast” (as well as all her daughters, i.e. church traditions she “birthed”). To put it in yet another way: all normative, legalistic institutionalized religions that were, or are, in existence. (Just as a side note, until quite recently, the religious ideologies were worldwide the ones that firmly held the reins of societies in their hands. But during the last 2–3 centuries it really seems as if the “beastly system,” that is to say, societies of which it comprises, started to turn on them. Then again, that’s also exactly what happened in Arslantepe around 3000 BCE when the place was burned down in what seems as a revolt against its clero-political elites. So, this particular facet of imagery may simply describe how, eventually, hierarchic society turns on the CEOs, which further implies that even institutionalized secular ideologies would fit the bill of “daughters of Babylon.”)
  • 144.000: Number 12 symbolizes completeness of all corners of the world. There are 12 signs of the zodiac, Jesus had 12 apostles, but, what is most important, we are talking about the 12 tribes of Israel here. Now, if 12 denotes completeness, 144.000, or 12 x 12 x 1000, has the connotation of absolute completeness. Hence, it signifies all Israelites who keep God as their priority, thus, have the seal of God on their foreheads, as it were (God is what’s primary on their mind). They also don’t defile themselves with women (i.e. corrupted church traditions, including Pharisaic or Rabbinic Judaism — see the part about two witnesses below). These will be eventually gathered from exile of ignorance in a place that symbolizes the presence of God (Mount Zion). In other words, they will reach liberation through knowledge of God and will be given everlasting life. And obviously, they won’t be alone: “After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands.

Seals, Trumpets, and Bowls

With the key symbols thus identified, we can move on to the main bulk of the revelation. In the context of BoR, seals clearly represent classified information. They hide the main secret to be revealed. You may say that it’s the backbone of the whole missive, which, not surprisingly, is the description of the life-cycle of a kingdom or empire.

In the same vein, trumpets, then, represent an announcement, a demonstration of the phenomenon or concept in question, but also a call to change in thinking and behavior (repentance). And finally, vials, bowls, or cups stand in for consequences — the “daily bread” of results of corruption, if all warnings are ignored.

So, without further ado, let’s unpack that.

In the first stage, there comes a person intent on conquest. He is introduced by an all-seeing creature with lion’s head, which represents constellation Leo traditionally associated with fire, a symbol of ambition and desire, but also archangel Michael. On the outside, the rider seems noble and as if bringing clarity and solutions — hence, the white horse — but, while he’s a crowned sovereign, indeed, he’s not a ruler with a scepter intent on ruling his domain but a hunter with a bow looking for a game to kill.

Trumpet of this stage is depicted by allusions to the seventh plague of Egypt when God commanded Moses to struck pharaoh’s lands with hail and fire that “struck down every plant of the field and broke every tree of the field” (Ex. 9:25). After this event pharaoh vacillated for the first time, but then eventually doubled down and still refused to release Israelites from his captivity. Hence, this is a period of open opposition that still may sow doubt in the imperial ambition and change the course of events.

But as history has showed us many times before (and even very recently), warnings are usually not heeded, and, eventually, all who wear the “mark of the beast”, that is, submit to the empire either in their mind (ideological conviction) or in deed (perceived unavoidable necessity) drink from the cup of God’s wrath by being infected with the impure sores of conquest in one way or another. In most mundane way, simply by insisting on securing more resources for oneself (whatever they may be), no matter the means, always scratching that itch.

Naturally, war follows. Thus, the second rider is depicted on a red horse carrying a sword, a tool suitable only for killing others. He is introduced by a creature with a face of an ox, traditionally associated with earth (constellation Taurus), growth on material plane, or archangel Uriel. It’s worth noting that red (while here also a clear allusion to blood) is in chakra system associated with root chakra, which represents material plane. Suffice to say, war causes tribes and nations to hate each other spinning the vicious cycle of vengeance.

At this point the causalities are already palpably obvious and even the means of exchange (“ships”) start to suffer. Well, they don’t say for naught that war is bad for business. However, if you look around today, it’s clear as day that people seldom change and repent at this stage. They still hope that things will somehow sort themselves out and everything will return to “normal” again. Taken to the extreme, however, if we go eye for an eye and don’t stop, eventually all go blind. In other words, if we don’t stop war, eventually, all nations perish.

Thus, as the resources dwindle as described, instead of charity which would be the logical and natural response, there comes the third rider on a black horse with scales. He is introduced by the third creature, that with the face of a man, which is the image of constellation Aquarius associated with air (or mind), and also with archangel Raphael. This rider, in his perversion of clear thinking, causes the prices of day-to-day necessities to soar, while luxury items (such as was oil or wine in 1st century CE) remain untouched by this. Sounds familiar, doesn’t it.

In any case, the waters and their sources, which represent teachings (that is, explanations of, and manuals for, reaching truths as in Jesus’ “living water”, but also philosophies, etc.), turn into drunkard’s crazy ideas that can even literally kill. That they kill metaphorically — move an individual further away from self-realization — is beyond any doubt. So, while people have tried to associate Wormwood with many different things, its meaning is pretty straightforward. In Greek the word reads as “Apsinthos” and denotes absinthe, an alcoholic beverage made (also) from “flowers and leaves of Artemisia absinthium (‘grand wormwood’).

Furthermore, this drink was well known as a cure in Egypt at least as early as c. 1500 BCE, in Hellenic Greece they enjoyed it as wormwood-flavored wine called absinthites oinos, and “Roman scholar Pliny the Elder describes chariot-race champions drinking absinthium (source).” Now, anyone who tried absinthe knows that it has quite different effects than a simple spirit with the same percentage of alcohol. It gives a feeling of invincibility with a slight psychedelic rush (and then a brutal hangover), thus, it’s not that hard to imagine its popularity among ancient “thinkers” but also the resulting inanities.

Well, be as it may, judgment clouded by greed rationalized by insane theories rooted in semi-alcoholic haze (whether literal or metaphorical) clearly serves all who cannot abandon their subservience to the empire just about right. And, eventually, this all results in all the sane lines of thought to be poisoned and lost.

A natural consequence is, then, the fourth rider, introduced by the creature with a face of an eagle, which is associated with the constellation Scorpio and thus water (i.e. emotions, intuition, but also the “prophetic” archangel Gabriel). This rider comes on a horse whose color “chlōrós” is traditionally translated as “pale”, but literally means “green”, “greenish-yellow”, or “pale green.” Now, green is in chakra system associated with heart chakra, but, in the context of BoR, it also evokes a notion of poison.

Not surprisingly, this rider has the power to kill by sword, famine, and plague (all domains of the three previous riders), his name is Death, and Underworld — or Hell, which, in addition to describing a literal “Hell on Earth”, also represents separation from God — logically follows him. I say not surprisingly, because when things reach this stage, everything is already poisoned and a total chaos reigns.

There is nothing that would offer any means for orientation anymore (hence the image of darkened celestial bodies), and the confusion that prevails burns all who fumble in ignorance like a scorching sun. And those who refuse the knowledge of God as a distinct possibility even more so. Simply, what once served as a lodestar, now kills because of corruption.

This is when the real shit starts to hit the fan and the empire begins to unravel.

While the nagging question of blatant injustice lingers in the air and no end is in sight yet, and while those who have their faces turned toward God are told to be even more patient, the empire itself is already plunged into darkness of confusion. And here, the author of BoR brings up the imagery of Siege of Jerusalem as a call to repentance — no matter how you look at it, the image of locusts and riders is a clear depiction of Roman troops that tormented Jerusalem for five months from April to September of the year 70 CE.

First, when you look at some visual reconstructions of Roman soldiers, you should see the clear parallels in imagery. Be it colors (iron, fiery red, dark blue, bright yellow — the Roman colors in 1st century CE), engravings of humans and lions on horse’s head armor (and accessories of infantry with the same effect), horse eye protection resembling eyes of insects, horse hair combed and braided like that of a woman (or even “woman’s hair” on Roman helmets), and so on and so forth.

1) Roman units in Eastern Provinces (31 BCE-195 CE); 2) Praetorian guard during Domitian (81-96 CE); 3) Reenactment of Roman infantry; 4) Horse head protection type D, 1st century CE; 5) Horse head protection, 3rd century CE; 6) Bronze Roman cavalry helmet and mask, 70-110 CE; 7) Woman hairstyle during Flavian dynasty (69-96 CE)

Next, Titus, who later became Roman emperor, was the commander of Legio XV Apollinaris (“Apollo’s Fifteenth Legion”) during the first stages of First Jewish Revolt. The legion also participated in the disastrous events of 70 CE in Jerusalem as part of a larger military force led by Titus, who was already promoted to the rank of general. Hence, “Apollyon,” a subtle play on words “Apollo” and “apóllymi” (which means “to destroy”), would be quite fitting pseudonym for the man who established himself as the commander of that specific legion and who was later responsible for destruction of Jerusalem and its temple.

Moreover, “according to Josephus, a contemporary historian and the main source for the war, the city was ravaged by murder, famine, and cannibalism.” That is, most causalities were caused by infighting — conflicts between various factions of Zealots, famine caused by an “apparent bid [of Jewish authorities] to force the defenders to fight for their lives,” disputes about provisions, cannibalism even. Truly a time when one would probably prefer death, but clinging to life at all cost would prevent even that and would incite one to participate in the atrocities.

That is as clear a depiction of a kingdom without a moral compass imploding on itself as you can get and as the author of BoR was able to see and communicate in a manner that could be understood at that time — when BoR was composed (assumed to be c. 20–25 years after the fact), the Siege of Jerusalem was still in living memory.

Thus, the darkness reaches its pinnacle. The river Euphrates that fueled the splendor of Sumer dries up, and the “impure spirits” of Dragon, Beast (from the sea), and False Prophet (beast from the earth) come into plain sight. The cosmic error and its Earthly implications become obvious, and so, we come to the grand finale.

Babylon, aka Sumerian socioeconomic model crumbles under its own weight; justice is served and meets with relief of the “righteous” (but also lamentations of those who still linger and long for Babylon); humanity enters the so-called Messianic age, a millennium long day of rest (or Shabbat) — the final day of the week of a weird, but necessary, detour. In this period, everything gets restored to its former glory, and, at its end, after a small closing altercation when the “culprit” (i.e. error) is judged and eradicated, the Garden of Eden returns on a global level for good.

Now, while you can interpret the book in this condensed manner, you can also interpret it linearly. The seals would, then, represent the original Sumerian empire, the blueprint of all empires that followed. The trumpets would represent the Roman empire, but also Kingdom of Judah (and Israel), or the situation in 1st century CE. And finally, bowls would represent the inevitable extreme, which the Sumerian system is bound to reach, if left to its own devices and the warnings of trumpets are left unheard and unheeded. As they obviously were.

Two Witnesses

In any case, as you may have noticed, I still didn’t touch upon one crucial symbol. That symbol being the two witnesses. They are described as two lampstands, two olive trees, and they are associated with Moses-like powers of manifesting plagues (similar to first trumpet). Furthermore, they are said to witness for 1260 days after which they are killed by the beast. Then they lie dead for three and half days, after which the breath of life enters them and they “ascend.”

To identify the two witnesses, first let’s keep in mind that, in the context of BoR, lampstands are communities (particularly Christian), and olive trees are a reference to Zechariah 4, where the olive trees are trees from which sprout olive branches, who “are the two who are anointed to serve the Lord of all the earth.” Moreover, their rising from dead is allusion to Ezekiel 37 where Israelites, presented in Ezekiel’s vision as a heap of bones, lament that they are cut off from God, to which God replies, “This is what the Sovereign Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life. […] I will put my Spirit in you and you will live, and I will settle you in your own land. Then you will know that I the Lord have spoken, and I have done it,” meaning their knowledge of God will be restored.

Thus, we must search for Jewish spiritual communities (lampstands) within specific tribes (olive trees), that openly oppose representatives of the system for the duration of the whole tribulation as symbolized by Daniel’s 1260 day-years (during which also the Woman, i.e. the spiritual tradition that gave birth to Jesus and all who followed, hides in wilderness). Then they must be overpowered by the system, cut off from knowledge of God, only to be almost immediately “restored.” And they must be from the same tradition as Jesus as well as all of this must happen in Jerusalem (which is spiritually called Sodom and Egypt).

When you look into history the only two known Judaic sects that openly opposed Pharisees, Sadducees, and Zealots were Essenes and Nazarenes (i.e. the primary followers of Jesus). Both sects shared a lot of beliefs and practices (also, John the Baptist is considered by many to be an Essene), both opposed the Babylonian ideologies and lifestyles of the three most dominant Jewish sects and were a thorn in their side. Finally, both essentially disappeared in 1st century CE.

Essenes almost completely, while Nazarenes were devoured by Saulian Pharisaic Christianity which became the normative Christianity as we know it today. Not surprisingly, soon after that, the direct gnosis was evidently lost. Whether the members of Nazarene sect were actually self-realized to begin with is debatable, but it’s more than evident that with Saulian influence coming to prominence after 70 CE, Christians were cut off from God.

However, Gnosticism as the “empirical” branch of Nazarenes, no matter how twisted, survived basically uninterrupted until today despite enormous persecution it faced from Jews and Christians alike. And also let’s not forget the growing number of contemporary Christians who strive to find the “authentic Jesus” and pinpoint the original Way.

Similarly, the ideas of Essenes clearly survived within secret esoteric Kabbalistic Judaic communities. I would even say that contemporary normative (not only) Rabbinical Judaism, which made a U-turn and during the last two millennia became almost militantly messianic, as well as the Hasidic orthodoxy with its (although legalistic) literalism and strong emphasis on communal lifestyle, are a clear testimony of Essene influences.

This also sheds even more light on who are the 144.000 firstborn to inherit the everlasting life who are descendants from the same “Woman.”


I, honestly, don’t care if it will be just a self-fulfilling prophecy, but I truly wish Jews to become a true light to the nations. After all, and let’s be honest here, despite the plethora of other valid non-dual traditions in the world, which are all like siblings, it would be quite different story, if a worldwide and genuine call to knowledge of God came from Jewish environment and on a mass scale.

Well, what can I say — I eagerly await to see the Jewish descendants of Nazarene householders and their semi-monastic Essene counterparts to embrace their spiritual ancestry and finally awake. We are almost there, but not quite yet. There is still a lot of dogma and error floating in the air. Then again, it all seems just a matter of (not so long) time.