Note: This article was originally published at http://www.tektonics.org/harpur01.html, and parodies the methods skeptic Tom Harpur uses to "prove" that Jesus Christ didn't exist.
It is hard for me even now to believe that throughout all my previous training in and inquiry into the spiritual and religious dimensions of life I could have missed something so important: Maple Leaf NHL broadcasts are actually allegories of the great struggle of the spirit in each of us to realize our own divinity. Indeed, the latest scholarship establishes beyond a doubt that the single vast theme of all NHL broadcasts is the incarnation of the divine in the human. Originally this ancient wisdom was immersed in the symbolism of myth to protect it from profanation by the vulgar or the malicious, but when it was taken over by certain fundamentalist elements in the media, they imposed a literalist interpretation to this sublime truth, and as it was transformed for popular consumption it lost its spiritual significance - its very soul. I consider it my sacred duty to educate the ignorant masses and recover this lost light, which is vital if we are to evolve to a higher level of spiritual consciousness.
We have been led to believe that the rituals and symbols of the Maple Leaf game are unique, but how surprised regular viewers of NHL broadcasts will be to learn that all of these, everything - from the national anthems to the final sips from the cup - already existed in ancient Egyptian sources!
Consider the playing surface itself: the red dots on the ice are actually ancient symbols of the sun god. All ancient religion began as astronomical and astrological in nature, and the sun, the giver of life, always figured prominently. So it is not surprising to find so many references to the sun god in a hockey rink. The ice, (frozen) water, is the ancient symbol for matter. Water (matter) gives birth to spirit with the aid of the sun. While the five circles ("rings") on the ice surface represent the five planets - the original five planets of the ancient mystery religions - we should note that five is also the number of the cross; stand with arms outstretched and the body comprises 5 parts (2 arms, 2 legs and body and head) to form a cross. The cross of course, with its vertical beam representing the divine spirit intersecting the horizontal beam representing the material, is the symbol of God incarnate. It is this cross motif we see repeated in the four zonal faceoff circles, framing each red dot. All of this points to Horus, the Egyptian man-god who was both God incarnate and sun god. The ice surface awakens our awareness of the great mystery - of matter becoming spirit - with its many symbols of Horus, as it was originally intended to. The nets, those ancient symbols of the fisherman, also symbolize Horus who is often depicted as a fisherman in Egyptian manuscripts.
The similarity between the symbols and mythical beings we encounter in Maple Leaf hockey and that which we find in ancient Egyptian religion is astounding, leaving no doubt as to their meaning or origin. Consider the team jersey: the leaf is a symbol rich in meaning in ancient middle-eastern religion, but perhaps it is its unexpected color that is most significant. Why blue? Blue, the color that Kandinsky said draws the individual towards the infinite and awakens a yearning for purity, was the color that ancient Egyptian tombs were painted; blue was thought to be the color that separated mankind from the Beyond. It is most interesting that this blue and white color combination, which re-occurs in the jersey, frequently appears in ancient religion in the struggle between Heaven and Earth, the latter represented by red and green. So we see hockey as symbolizing this struggle, the struggle taking place in all of us for the divine spark to rise above our material body. Note that Don Cherry's dog is called "Blue" although he is in fact white. Literalists who see the jersey and dog as having a material existence in space and time are unable to offer a reasonable explanation as to why the leaf is blue when it ought to be green, and why a dog that is white is called "Blue". It is only when we interpret these things correctly, as symbol and mythical being pointing to a cosmic truth, the divine struggle in all of us, that they make any sense at all.
Another interesting point concerns the "C" on the jersey of the team leader. Originally this was a "K", as we see on the more traditional European team jerseys, but it has been altered by an international conspiracy of broadcasters that continues even today to repress the true meaning of hockey. The "K" comes from the ancient Egyptian word "KRST" found on Egyptian mummies. "KRST" has the root word meaning "to anoint", and Horus is often referred to as the "anointed one". The mummy was anointed with spices to preserve it, as each individual is anointed, or "steeped" in, soul energies that will endure to everlasting life. The name on the "KRST" jersey, "Sundin", is clearly a reference to the sun god. The name "Mats" or "Matthew" has its origin in the place of judgment, the Hall of Maat, where the deceased is led by Horus to his father Osiris' throne to be judged.
Nowhere is the true meaning of hockey more clearly portrayed than at the beginning of the game. The (originally) square TV screen frames the center "faceoff circle". This would have been instantly understood by any educated XXVIth dynasty Egyptian: the square being the symbol for man in virtually all ancient religions, and the circle, God. Thus the circle square is "god within man". This meaning is undeniable despite the fundamentalist's attempt to obscure it by the imposition of the so-called "letterbox" screen format.
The final prize of this struggle to transcend our material bounds, the Stanley Cup, although perhaps a later addition to the myth, is obviously a reference to the Grail - that which Jung said symbolizes "the inner wholeness for which men have always been searching", again clearly a symbol of the human drive for the divine rather than an actual artifact.
In order to convince the skeptics of the inescapable fact that the Maple Leafs are actually mythical beings modeled after ancient Egyptian gods, I offer these, I believe, conclusive proofs: consider the name "Ed Belfour" (bel-four): Bel was the Babylonian god of life, justice, and significantly, fire (a reference to the sun god), as is Horus. Four is rich in cosmic meaning: there's the four cardinal points, four winds, four phases of the moon, four seasons, four elements, four arms of the cross, and so on. It shouldn't surprise us that Ed's symbol is the eagle since Horus, according to myth, was given the hawk as his distinctive symbol, and is often depicted as a hawk-headed figure, as is Eddie when he wears his "mask". And, to remove any doubt that Horus is the prototype for Ed Belfour, the previous goalie "Joseph" (Jo-Seph or "Seb" in Egyptian) was the name of the father of Horus in Egyptian myth! The parallels between the Maple Leaf players and Horus are many and substantial; in fact it can be proven, beyond any doubt, that ALL of the "players" on the Maple Leaf roster are actually figures borrowed from ancient Egyptian mythology and were never real people at all! The story of the damaged eye of Brian Berrard strongly mirrors an episode in the Egyptian Book of the Dead involving Horus, for instance. Those who persist in the literalist interpretation of these "players" as real historical people are unable to answer the question of why, in a culture with so much recorded history, there are no undisputed references to ANY of them anywhere outside of the sports pages! What must be clear to any educated person is that these "people" have never existed - they were meant to be understood allegorically, as symbols of Horus and the cosmic KRST.
In closing, I would like to assure the reader that my purpose in writing this is not to diminish the prestige of hockey - I love hockey; in fact I used to play it. Neither is it to shatter the comfortable security of those well-meaning but spiritually childish people who cling to a superficial understanding of hockey as athletic endeavor. My purpose, rather, is to recover the true meaning of hockey - that points us on our way to the cosmic KRST. Also, when one considers the underlying influence of hockey in much of the violent behavior in our culture, we can see that it is only when everyone has the same understanding of hockey as I do that it will be possible for us to have true harmony.