While all the devas of the Sensual Sphere worlds (which includes Earth, subhuman planes, and lower celestial planes) are subject to the passions to varying degrees, titans (asuras) above all others have become addicted to them, particularly wrath, pride, boasting, and bellicosity.
Because of their passions, rebirth as a titan is considered one of the four unhappy destinations (together with rebirth as an animal, a ghost, or a hellion). The state of a titan is reflected by the mental state of human beings obsessed with force and violence, always looking for an excuse to get into a fight, angry with everyone and unable to maintain calm or resolve disputes peacefully.
In terms of power, titans rank above humans but below most other devas. They live in the area at the foot of Mount Sumeru (either in the region of ancient Sumer, the center of the Sumerian civilization, with earthly access to space or a broadcasting "tower" as in the legend of the "Tower of Babel" according to Wisdom Quarterly, or the highest mountains in the world, the Himalayas, which would place them in the vicinity of Afghanistan as the report that came to author Stephen Quayle's attention).
The titan leaders are called "titan lords" (Pali, asurinda) and there are various according to tribes and factions. Among them are the bow-wielding Dānaveghasa titans and the terrible-faced Kālakañjakas. The principal leaders are Vepacitti, Rāhu (aka Verocana), and Pahārāda.
Myths of the Titans
The titans formerly lived in the space world of the Thirty-Three, Tavatimsa, on a plane level with the peak of Mt. Sumeru, with the other devas of that world. When Sakka became the supreme ruler of that world, the titans celebrated by drinking a lot of sura (beer, although some say gandapāna wine), a liquor so strong that Sakka had forbidden it.
Weakened by their drunkenness, the titans were unable to effectively resist when Sakka had them tossed out of that "heaven" onto this Earth at the base of Sumeru. (This story provides an explanation of their name, a-sura, "no [more] sura"). A tree grows where they landed called Cittapātali, and when the marooned crew saw it blossoming, they realized that it was different from the Pāricchattaka tree growing at home. They knew they had been dispossessed.
They now contemplated revenge in the form of a war in heaven. In armor with weapons, they ascended Mt. Sumeru. Sakka set out to confront them but was forced to retreat because of their numbers.
Passing through the forest where the avian-hybrids (garuḍas) live on his "flying chariot," Sakka saw that his passage was destroying their nests and ordered his "charioteer" [flight crew leader] Mātali to turn back. When the pursuing titans saw Sakka turn about, they felt certain that he must be coming back with an even larger army. So they fled, ceding the ground they had gained.
Despite their many wars, there was eventually a partial peace between the titans and the Tavatimsa devas. This came about because Sakka fell in love with Sujā, the daughter of the titan chief Vepacitti. He had given Sujā the right to choose her own husband at an assembly of the titans. She chose Sakka, who had attended disguised as an aged titan. Vepacitti (a kind of "Lucifer" figure in Buddhism long before Judaism or Christianity came into existence) thus became the father-in-law of Sakka (also called Maghavā, a kind of archangel "Michael" figure). More
- The suggestion is that Sumer and Mesopotamia between ancient India and Judah (Israel/Egypt) all shared similar stories, creation myths, about life on Earth, fallen angels, celestial gods and wars. Buddhism inherited mythology, particularly as filtered through the Brahminical Vedas. The stories are clearly far older than either the Christian or Jewish sacred texts, older even than the ancient Sumerian tablets.
LongWalkers: The Return of the Nephilim" (Buddhist asuras) is written as a work of fiction and a movie script based on fact. In it he has included a personal letter he received from a pilot who flew a 12-foot tall, dead, cannibalistic giant out of Afghanistan/Pakistan. It had apparently destroyed a Special Forces team hunting the Taliban in 2005.
The giant has six fingers and six toes and is depicted on the cover of the book as an accurate artist's rendering of the actual event. The pilot revealed to him by phone, Quayle claims, things only someone who was actually there could have possibly known.
LongWalkers (288 pages, seven full-page illustrations, and a copy of the letter on which the book is based) takes the reader around the world and through time in search of the truth about the returning giants [in Buddhist cosmology the asuras or "titans"]. The story begins in Gaul (109 BC) then shifts to the Grand Canyon Utah (1919), goes around the world with stops in Turkey, Lake Titicaca in Bolivia, Europe, back to the US, Salisbury Plain in England, Neu-Schwabenland in Antarctica, to Egypt, Izamal in Mexico's Yucatan, and finally to San Francisco and Khartoum in Sudan.
Biblical Items Left In
"And it came to pass when the children of men had multiplied, that in those days were born unto them beautiful and comely daughters. And the angels [asuras or akasha-devas], the children of the heaven [devaputras], saw and lusted after them, and said to one another: Come, let us choose us wives [have sex with] from among the children of men and beget us children.
"And they became pregnant and brought forth giants. And when men could no longer sustain them, the giants turned against them and devoured mankind. And they began to sin against birds, and beasts, and reptiles, and fish, and to devour one another's flesh, and drink the blood. Then the earth laid accusation against the lawless ones" (Enoch, 6:1-2, 7:1).
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