You may have heard of the Oracle of Delphi and dismissed it as a curiosity from our silly past. The cave where the prophetess got her messages from Apollo was thought to be the omphalos, or the belly button of the world; i.e. the spot where the material world had connected to the spiritual world, just as your belly button is the spot where you once connected to your mama.
Of course, almost every tribe had such a spot; it was on their turf and they were the real people-all other upright bipeds were suspect. Lest you think our ancestors were just ignorant, please bear in mind that today’s American exceptionalism and Israel’s wailing wall embody the same basic concepts.
Due to Delphi’s belly-button status and insider information available through the prophetess, Delphi was extremely rich. It was the central bank of the ancient world for about 800 years. 800 years! Lest you think going to the central bank to determine how the world works and make personal choices, please consider the fact that we are still doing this, though whether the belly-button is in the city of London or on Wall Street is debatable. It is significant that Alan Greenspan was called “The Oracle,” and if you don’t think his words were revered, you’ve never seen the fawning treatment he received at any given congressional inquiry.
The Oracle at Delphi was probably every bit as accurate as Greenspan, who was a big admirer of Ayn Rand’s toxic worldview. Greenspan’s dogma of deregulation and free market fundamentalism bear all the marks of a religious belief system. Sacrifices must be offered to the Invisible Hand, lest it slap us upside the head. When we humans reject God, we promptly create a substitute while decrying the god of our ancestors.
The Oracle at Delphi at least offered one bit of advice that is better than anything Oracle Greenspan ever offered. Over the entrance to the cave was a sign that said simply,