“Dragon” is mentioned 35 times in the King James Version of the Old and New Testaments.
When Job is really down in the dumps, he laments, “I am a brother to dragons and a companion to owls.”(Job 30:30) Later an angel with chains comes down from heaven in Revelation, “And laid hold of the dragon, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years.” (Rev 20.3).
Jesus confronts the dragon in the desert, taking command over him, and commands him to get “away from me…”. Satan does as he is told and departs. (Matthew 4:9-4;11)
Siddhartha Gautama is Attacked by A Different Dragon
Similarly, when Prince Siddhartha Gautama sits under the Bodhi tree for those many days, seeking enlightenment, he is confronted by a dragon, Mara. Mara tempts Siddhartha, trying to derail him from his journey of inner peace by turning his heart to earthly pleasures. Only after Siddhartha wrestles Mara down, pinning the monster to the floor of another reality, does Siddhartha Gautama become the Buddha , “the enlightened one”
The mythology of outer heroes mirrors our inner selves. Anthropologist and thought-leader, Joseph Campbell says the dragon represents our ego in the landscape of self. It is the ego that says, “I can do that,” “I want that,” and “I love this”.
We all Know “Ego”.
Jesus wrestled the dragon and beat it back in the desert. At other times, Jesus supernaturally pulled the dragon out of people in order that they might heal. Buddha had success under the Bodhi tree. He banished Mara. Adam and Eve did not beat the dragon. They succumbed to it.
The Garden of Eden
In the parable of the garden, the first humans were pushed out of a peaceful existence because they did not triumph over the dragon.
It is interesting to note there was no rain or snow in Eden. Pools of water beneath the earth fed the vegetation. No animal killed another for food. Animals lived off the green leaves of plants (Genesis 1:29-30) The garden was a land of peace. Outside the garden, the first children of Adam and Eve fought. The first murder resulted from untamed aggression between two brothers.
Jesus says that “The Kingdom of God” is upon you. Whether you believe that Jesus was the son of God or not, Jesus is one of the classic heroes of an enlightened self. He fought the dragon outside and the dragon within. Not even death would stop his journey. His commandment to all was to love the divine and to love others as we love ourselves. His message was peace – triumph over the dragon.
The Discipline of the Daimonic
Socrates spoke of the “daimonic”. The daimonic to the Greeks was not evil or good. The daimonic was the passion of life. The daimon held the seeds of both enlightened aspiration and reckless debauchery. Indeed, a strong civilization came about, according to Socrates, because its citizens had their daimonic natures under control. This meant that the interests of the common good were realized in individuals. Civilization, in the eyes of Socrates , was both democratic and socialistic. Greed and power were reckless components of the daimonic.
Satanism is the Honoring of The Ego Over All Else
This is the central tenet of The Satanic Bible published in America in 1969.
“The Satanist believes in complete gratification of his ego,” writes Anton LaVey in The Satanic Bible. “Satanism in fact, is the only religion which advocates the intensification or encouragement of the ego.”
“Here Be Dragons”
The Dragons in modern fiction are everywhere – The Hobbit, Game of Thrones, Train Your Dragon. In the age of antiquity, “Hic Sunt Dracones” was a common phrase on maps warning the pathfinder when traveling in the lands of dragons, particularly in the sea. The Bible refers to the dragon of the sea as “Leviathan”.
Where did all those Dragons of ancient myth go?
They went within.
Looking at the parable of Eden, the man who listens to the dragon must be expunged, so that the peaceful garden may grow. According to Jesus, Buddha, and Socrates, the only way to know peace and the divine, is to cast the dragon off.