Saturday, November 24, 2007



(This Blog deals in especially the censored. The following unique and remarkable information was sent to three Israeli papers last week, Haaretz, Jerusalem Post, National Daily News, not one of which acknowledged in relation to use of this as popular magazine article material or just a blog connection).

Just occasionally revelation may be accidental but carry sufficient force not to be dismissed as pure coincidence. The following information is too graphic, consistent and against all statistical probability not to merit consideration, though it came to me in an unexpected way starting from an unusual source. As per the Psalms the skies had knowledge to utter and messages for the times like you will never have heard them from astrology. Least of all on Israel.

Perhaps because they’re considered too fatalistic or medieval or require very accurate birth times modern astrologers don’t normally use the so called Arabic Parts which are mathematical formulae (like Sun plus Moon minus Ascendant). In the wake of recently buying a new computer and new softwares for it I examined a large collection of ancient and modern Parts applying them by chance to especially an Israel chart in the course of testing a software that included many Parts. But in no time things started adding up to a real picture and I was struck, so struck I began adding in modern asteroids, like Israel, America, Solomon, Tempel (sic), Showa etc which due to their precise reference can flesh out the generalities of the familiar astrological chart, although again few astrologers today do this.

Soon I was registering astonishment in a world somewhere beyond The Bible Codes and rather more substantial and convincing. I was seeing a recognizable Israel and with it the potential for genuine prophecy. First however I must persuade you some kind of revelation is involved, one of facts against which forecast is reasonably ventured.


I began by seeing the Sun of Israel’s birth (at 23 Taurus on May 14th 1948) was conjuncted by the Part of Destiny. One might have guessed as much - the whole story of the nation’s foundation and development is surrounded by talk of precisely fate and destiny. Jewish destiny needless to say all starts with Father Abraham but there’s no Abraham asteroid for the testing. There’s nonetheless one for Abraham’s wife, Israel’s mother Sara, so in our feminist era Sara conjuncts the Part instead. Actually, and rather neatly, to one side of Sara is Israel’s sun then Sara and Destiny are united at 22 Taurus while at Sara’s other side stands Patria (Homeland) at 21. Destiny it seems is a homeland promised!

Turning to Israel’s first house, which should describe who a people are, how they see themselves and are seen, I then found all of the Part of Influence (Jews have it) the Part of Memory (Jews live from it), The Part of Originality (all those Jewish artists!) the Part of Commerce (Israelis are adept at it) and the Part of Security (Israelis are obsessed with it). Influence and Memory respectively conjuncted asteroids Levy and Levison, in effect the traditional purveyors of rabbinical/priestly ideas that help keep the people self aware.

Jewish self awareness however has a lot to do with religion and Moses. I found the Part of Initiative was in the ninth house of religion and philosophy conjuncted by asteroid Musa (Arabic for Moses). In the same religion house, (itself interestingly enough having the degree of a world point on its cusp) I found the Part of Widowhood conjuncting Nephele (Greek for Cloud). This seemed as suggestive as astrospeak could be to evoke images of the mourning, alienated Shekinah bride that for mystics symbolizes Israel’s supposed current condition. The religion house also held what I already knew to be one of the two Bible asteroids, Biblioran and at that the asteroid I knew referred to specifically the Hebrew Bible, Tanakh, not the Greek NT which is Biblialexa.

Elsewhere in the pattern and less positively but true enough to biblical record I found the Part of Treachery. At 17 Pisces it was opposing a conjunction of asteroids Jacobi with Rebekka – we know how mother and son tricked Isaac in the matter of an inheritance blessing between twin brothers. The tricky pair therefore leave asteroid Iszak stranded in the heavens in divisive Gemini, the twins sign, in opposition relation to Jupiter, astrology’s symbol for blessings.

Israel’s Part of Vocation and Status, historically the sort of thing Jacob was playing trickster for, conjuncts quite simply Yudovitch: Son of Jew, Jew. This Yudovitch moreover is designated a child of the Law by falling in Libra sign of the Laws, and dedicated to God by conjunction to one of the only two God asteroids, Bhagwat, Hindu for “Lord” or God. Both asteroids were in apparent retrograde, a sign astrologers normally take to indicate ideas strongly interiorized and this Jew was falling in Israel’s sector of the unconscious (twelfth house). After all, Jews do take being Jewish quite seriously!


Encouraged that a meaningful picture was emerging to merit fuller examination I turned attention to the unavoidably crucial fourth sector of home, land and inheritance. It was suitably defined by the ever surprising, revolutionary and unique sign of Aquarius in harmony with beliefs that the land of Israel is unique, “chosen” like the people. The Part of Passion conjuncted its cusp – Israelis are passionate about the land. Inside the house there was a lot more.

The land became Israel’s partly as a consequence of the Holocaust (shoah or showa) so an asteroid (showa) conjuncts The Part of Discord and opposes warlike, argumentative Mars which seems like a pattern eloquent for ongoing disputes over both Holocaust itself and the sort of territorial rights it might bestow. Also inside Israel’s home sector there was The Part of Substance or Possessions. Many Israelis regard their land as their inherited possession, not just a holocaust compensation. However, that Israel’s leaders see things rather less that way is strongly indicated. Possessions (at 17 Aquarius) itself conjunct at 16 a supplementary Jacob asteroid Jakoba since originally asteroids were registered in feminine form) and thus betokening Jacob’s legacy, is awkwardly opposed by Saturn (at 16 Leo) from the house of national leadership and destiny. Since for any political astrology Saturn just in and by itself has a lot to do with land and real estate political tensions with settlers could be serious as we know has been the case. Official, basically secularist, policy regarding the land in any case tangles with specifically religious issues that this home sector also vividly speaks into.

Inside Israel’s home/land sector we find the other God relevant asteroid, Theotes (Greek for Divinity/Godhead). Its position here seems in line with belief Israel is really more God’s land given in guardianship than Israel’s outright possession. Theotes notably conjuncts Aaronson which recalls how within this Promised Land it was the sons of Aaron who by tradition were the priestly link between God and Jew.

Upon this sacred territory stood first the Ark then the Temple, chief site of God’s presence and his earthly footstool. Asteroid Tempel (German for Temple) at 25 Aquarius loosely conjuncts Theotes/Godhead at 21 and between them like an Ark of Covenant at 23 stands Constantia (lit. steadfastness). It's an asteroid I have long been convinced can refer to any covenants. If I’m correct Constantia’s exact difficulty square to the national sun implies modern secular Israel, more especially its top leaders, stands outside, or has a few problems with, Covenant. But that would be nothing new! The sheer challenge and struggle of Israel’s covenanted encounters with the divine whether through temple cult priests or more personally, is then well represented by The Part of Revelation, itself conjunct Aeternitas (Eternity) - hence Eternal Revelation! - directly opposite Tempel from the national destiny sector. The old and often repeated message of the prophets in their more negative mode appears oddly etched in the skies by the conjunction of the national Part of Soul conjunct asteroid Devience (Deviance) - the soul easily astray, so to speak!


Regarding Israel’s leadership/destiny house which contains the important Part of Revelation much could be said. It’s dramatic and appears redolent of the Davidic heritage in its emphasis on planets in royal Leo – asteroid David(a) does in fact exactly aspect Israel’s 3 degree Leo Midheaven from 3 Sagittarius. Indeed, traces of the dynastic are so far unforgotten that beating even his father and defying every statistical possibility Solomon (as asteroid Solomin) in all his regal glory actually makes it to the leadership house exactly conjuncting The Part of Wisdom at 7 Leo! However as our theme is issues for a modern Jewish state not its dynastic history I’ll mention only two points.

First, asteroid Israel has appropriately made its way into the destiny house. From there it is in challenged opposition relation to Theotes (God) while it conjuncts the Part of Spirit and The Part of Violence - the nation is after all surrounded by violence and was born amid it. Perhaps more serious, depending upon if and how it works (I don’t claim to know!) The Part of The End of Things , conjuncts Israel’s leadership/destiny Midheaven angle. It’s anyone’s guess if this bears relevance to apocalyptic assumptions as of Christian Zionists that it will be international disputes linked to Israel that will ultimately trigger the end of age Armageddon scenario.

Though there’s no Armageddon asteroid to help enlighten us on that contested point there actually is one for Jerusalem and Jerusalem represents tension, tension and more tension within the emerging picture. On the positive side it conjuncts The Part of Bequest. This again is how the city is religiously regarded – God gives Jerusalem to the Jews and it is for the Messiah’s rule. In harmony with that rather vital point asteroid Masi, meaning Messiah, conjuncts Jerusalem! However Jerusalem is both challengingly opposed to the chart’s ascendant (moment of birth) and in difficulty square aspect to its destiny Midheaven which, as said, The End of Things conjuncts. As such the combination almost looks like an invocation of the Zechariah prophecy of Jerusalem as the ultimate cup of reeling for the nations (Zech 12:2-3), the more so as this Jerusalem falls, like Israel’s national sun, within the sector (the seventh) which deals with any nation’s foreign relations.

By now perhaps I have given a picture vivid enough to justify a bit of forecasting except that to do so meaningfully I must cover one further point first, namely this tricky fact that the nation’s sun and Jerusalem fall in specifically the seventh house.


Since Israel’s Sun falls not in the natural leadership sector but its house of foreign affairs by the rules of political astrology this means the nation’s Prime Ministers, his/her advisers and the national policies they pursue will be considerably determined by what other nations think, want and do. At times it might be hard for Israel truly to think and act for itself. It wasn’t established by itself and others who helped form it may not understand what it really requires – amusingly enough asteroid United Nations bossily sits in Israel’s first house of the people as though trying to define, control or limit them (the UN has recently unanimously voted for a Palestinian state at the expense of Israeli land and is obsessively concerned with Israel having spent a third of all its debating hours on it) but then… the UN conjuncts The Part of Perversion!

The seventh house is notoriously the sector, perhaps on the basis of something like a Taming of the Shrew psychology, that provides persons and nations their closest relations and their open enemies. Israel manifestly has both but in addition something metaphysical encroaches upon the see-saw. The fated nodes (a connections point much involved with where one should be going and what doing in life) also fall in this foreign affairs house where they rather unhelpfully conjunct Malin (French for Devil). On this basis one might have to say Israel’s truest enemy is less on earth than in the Beyond where, rather as in the book of Daniel, Michael the angelic guardian battles demonic forces! While this perspective might be easily dismissed today undeniably the Holocaust was influenced by movements steeped in a dark occultism. There’s also something else….

Conjunctions are very for or against something. Israel’s Nodes fall at 13 Taurus. On one side at 14 stands Malin while on the other at 12 is Shilow, which is rather obviously astrospeak for a mystic name of the Messiah, Shiloh. So Devil and Messiah appear locked in conflict over Israel though Shiloh is slated to win. At 10 degrees Shiloh is backed up by asteroid, Angel (Michael defending Israel?) while Shilow’s 12 degrees is identical with the leadership/destiny sector’s 12 degree Pluto and under the rules Pluto is not just technically “ruler” or chief planet of Israel’s chart, but in any religious contexts a deity symbol. And God in anything like Jewish/biblical conception, the hidden God of death, judgement, total transformation, mystery, vengeance and “jealousy” can only be symbolized by Pluto, ruler of vengeance and jealousy sign, Scorpio.


Back on earth and not in the seventh sector America’s peculiar role in Israel’s destiny appears described by asteroid America at 25 Pisces conjuncting The Part of Sudden Advancement and America has periodically given Israel some help to advance itself. Significantly, America makes both a favourable aspect to Israel’s sun (at 23 Taurus) and a difficulty/denial aspect to Israel’s Jupiter (at 26 of Sagittarius). Now, with the slow moving, devastatingly transformative Pluto has been conjuncting Israel’s Jupiter (its value system, its religion) America’s support, itself partly religion based, is on the wane and might eventually cease. The economy too may now either go into decline or just possibly skyrocket since this super strong Jupiter sits like some Deuteronomic promise of abundance in Israel’s second house of goods and income. Whatever, the issue of Israeli/American connection cannot help but be religion linked.

Israel’s spiritual role in the world and its general significance is highlighted by its natal Jupiter which is in Jupiter’s natural sign, religious/philosophical Sagittarius, from where it conjuncts the Galactic Centre much associated with world events, especially issues in religion. This super strong Jupiter also conjuncts The Part of Legal Affairs and Marriage Contracts - how much of the Hebrew Bible is taken up with just those two themes! With America interacting under a Plutonic transit with a nation so strongly marked by Jupiter it follows that President Bush’s aims to further peace by a division of Israel is contentious for the sort of religious viewpoint Bush and his assistant Rice assume they represent. After all it is said God sets his face against those who will divide “my land” (Joel 3:2) - God’s rather than Israel’s.

In light of that thought it’s somewhere between amusing and sinister that asteroid Busch (pronounced Bush, which for asteroids is considered the main thing) at 14 Taurus conjuncts Malin (Devil) in Israel’s chart. I’m uncertain what to make of this (obviously it could be a fluke) and unfortunately there’s no Rice asteroid to enlarge on the possible implications…..unless we take the name Rees from which, like Rhys, it’s derivative and with which it’s considered interchangeable if not always identically pronounced.

In that case if it’s not a fluke it could be spectacular because Rees conjuncts Busch and Devil from 15 Taurus! But if Busch is truly Bush and then Rees is Rice perhaps they do have to be seen as a kind of devil’s agents. Biblically at least they can scarcely be anything else if Israel is not for the dividing but intended rather for what the nation has - at least periodically- experienced: unexpected occasions of expansion. Undeniably Israel’s natal opposition of Jupiter to surprising Uranus, (the latter significantly ruler of the nation’s land sector ) is an aspect normally deemed to be about the challenges of mental and/or physical enlargement not diminishment.


I am finally ready for a bit of prophecy. Assuming the Annapolis conference goes ahead to date and plan what the conference will organize is necessarily what in the long term won’t succeed and could bring all the kind of disasters in its wake rather in the way some rabbis have been warning Bush it will entail. Certainly the conventional signs any astrologer would look to like previous eclipse, lunation etc are hardly promising.

The eclipse preceding Annapolis was at 18.25 of Virgo. This conjuncted Israel’s Part of Peril and its Part of The Year of Death. Obviously Israel won’t die because of Annapolis at whatever date it occurs but its arrangements could kill off much that so far Israel has known, or trusted in – it’s perhaps the year that sees the beginning of a slow end to American alliance.
The lunation before Annapolis fell at 17.20 Scorpio in difficulty square to Israel’s leadership house Saturn. Whether they realize it or not the leaders will be restricted and disadvantaged over land – they may even be plain deceived since a Neptune aspect of the kind that regularly favours deception is also involved in the lunation. Whether or not he’s the most corrupt leader in Israeli history that some maintain, it’s of incidental interest that Prime Minister Olmert is a Libran. Librans love peace and so much so that like Neville Chamberlain who trusted Hitler there’s a risk Olmert will sell Israel for peace, a subject Israel’s leadership is just not clear enough about (see below).

The Full moon before Annapolis gives more bad omen. It conjuncts Israel’s Part of Necessity and Constraint and opposes its Part of Catastrophe and Part of Hopes and Wishes, the peculiar natal conjunction of which possibly portrays how Israel doesn’t always hope and wish aright - which in at least one respect, as I will show, it almost certainly doesn’t. We can keep a somewhat more open mind on the fact that David is tied in with Hope and Wishes. This could reflect how some within Israel (witness some members of the new Sanhedrin) do wish and even intend to revive Davidic monarchy in modern Israel. In a more general sense David is perhaps always a name to conjure with, a symbol of hope.

Aspects around the assumed time of conference are suitably negative. I mention just two:
Restrictive Saturn opposes Israel’s conjunct Parts of Kingdom and Victory and asteroid Salavat (salvation/health). Aggressive Mars exactly opposes the Part of Fortune, itself curiously conjuncting the Part of Bondage (which suggests to me something in modern Israel’s profile holds back potential blessings. I won’t speculate here on what but the skies may supply a clue).

On the presently most likely days of conference (25th and 26th ) the moon is in Cancer. Whether or not these are the true dates the point leads me to mention a whole delusion factor among Israelis somewhat linked to the sign of Cancer.


Contrary to what some might imagine, what Israel wants is peace. The point is vividly made by the conjunction of Israel’s Part of Happiness with asteroid Frieden (peace). Israel as Lion of Judah is no Paper Tiger, but a pussy cat that can sometimes be tickled and stroked. However in any pattern a nation’s main peace concerns are always signified by Venus. Unfortunately for Israel its Venus falls in the natural mother and home sign of Cancer so that like most mothers Israel likes peace at home at almost any cost. But the Israeli Venus is opposed by The Part of Delusion! Political Israel imagines peace can be bought by purely political solutions, and at that rather along the lines of give the baby its bottle and rock it to sleep Cancerian ones buying slumber time and surrendering ever more homeland like so many feedings to people expected contentedly to keep their promises.

This disposition to delusion is amplified and confirmed by the opposition of Pax (Peace) to Israel’s natal Mercury. In context this is truly no joke since Israel’s Mercury rules its sector of debts, taxes and death. I’m not trying to say that everything Israel has done towards its neighbours is right or that implacable violence is the answer to whatever’s not working for it, but there are situations in which paradoxically desire for Pax may actually court death. Especially situations of division such as divisive, trickster Mercury “rules” in Israel’s case. There will be occasions when no compromise might prove the safer path. Israel’s much invoked prophet Elijah would probably agree. Asteroid Elias is in exact tension square to the dividing Mercury!

What’s certain is that there can be no solution that leaves religion out of the picture given that shalom/Venus is in Israel’s religion and beliefs sector. Secular solutions however apparently commonsensical won’t work even though it might be hard to see precisely what will. It’s nonetheless interesting in view of the historic call, “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem” that Venus stands in direct favourable aspect to asteroid Jerusalem which, recall, itself conjuncts Masi/Messiah without whom the issue of Jerusalem can perhaps never be sorted out.

Dividing Israel and/or Jerusalem is basically an alien, gentile idea agreeable to purely rationalist notions of what seems best. Sure enough we find it’s the asteroid Le Gentil (the Gentile) that conjuncts the birth chart’s division principle, Mercury, which as already stated rules Israel’s death house while to make matters doubly clear Le Gentil itself manages to conjunct Israel’s Part of Death. The message here seems to be that gentiles risk making for, or perhaps in some instances actively desire, the death of Israel through their plans. Whether for war or peace their divisive policies could nonetheless involve their own death to the extent the promise is that those who divide “my land” invoke judgement.


Though biblical prophecy seems to indicate the Messiah would arrive (Jews) or return (Christians) following the division of a restored Israel, (a division which if our times are truly apocalyptic would therefore have to take place), the Annapolis arrangements cannot and will not work in the long term and will only cause further unforeseen troubles. Next year February’s solar eclipse that opposes Israel’s Saturn from the nation’s land and inheritance sector bodes ill for Israel’s leadership and real estate issues. It possibly indicates a backlash for what has been done or is being pushed through during 08; it could well signal the end of Olmert’s rule. Whatever, as solar eclipses colour events for a year a difficult year seems promised. At the time of February’s eclipse Neptune, a dissolvent, is exactly opposite asteroid, Israel (Israel is being dissolved) while aggressive Mars is conjunct the territory ruling Uranus in divisive Gemini (the land moves towards division?)

However, according to traditional rabbinic astrology for which this gentile cannot warrant, lunar eclipses are more important for Israel than the solars that most astrologers set more store by. In that case August 08’s lunar eclipse conjunct Israel’s Tempel in the land sector ought to promise some kind of event, decision, agreement (or possibly crisis given an eclipse in excitable Aquarius?), with regard to the Temple Mount area. Could a Red Heifer be sacrificed? Will the Sanhedrin or the Temple Mount Faithful announce something? Might nature take over? I have no idea; but I suspect late 08 or early 09 could be a real Temple time and to expect the Aquarian unexpected within the six months from the eclipse would be reasonable. Simply handing over the Temple Mount with the rest of a returned Israel would definitely be trouble making and unreasonable.

Much may happen in the volatile society that is Israel and have its international reverberation but if – improbably - effects of the Annapolis agreements will not have run into difficulties long before 2014, the eclipse of October 2014, which falls conjunct Israel’s ascendant, opposite Jerusalem and Messiah and in tension square to its destiny Midheaven, is virtually guaranteed to light many fuses.

But whatever you do and think, don’t expect that temporary setbacks and losses will cause Israel to be overcome. With its Mars (military force) conjunct fame giving king star, Regulus, in fiery Leo in the leadership/destiny house in fortunate trine to a Jupiter strong in its natural sign, fiery Sagittarius, itself conjunct the religion and world relevant Galactic Centre, Israel is all of “a blazing pot ….a flaming torch among the sheaves” (Zech 12:6) scarcely able to lose for long if it tried. (And if Irani is Iran in Israel’s chart I include Iran within that statement). “The Lord, is a warrior” sings Moses. Yahweh of Israel, Plutonic ruler of the national birth chart is “the Lord God of hosts” (armies). Start dividing or sparring with Israel and sooner or later you might discover the fact with truly mystic force.

NOTE. The horoscope used for Israel is a widely accepted one. Set for 4.35 pm EET, 14.5.1948 at Tel Aviv it takes as symbolic moment of birth the end of Ben Gurion’s broadcast Independence speech when he declared “The State of Israel has arisen”. Some Israeli astrologers use the beginning of the broadcast with Libra rather than the 0 degrees Scorpio which makes Pluto chart ruler. The horoscope is familiar to me from an astrologer friend specializing in political astrology who regularly consulted with a rabbi on the data for its interplay with Israeli history. There is every reason to suppose this is the true chart though its alternative being near in time will also render sense like a portrait taken from a different angle. However, for working Arabic Parts the time must be correct as formulae for most Parts require a correct ascendant degree. When I refer to conjunctions or opposition of Parts to planets or asteriods I usually mean within one and half degrees, possibly two which I allow for asteroids. Whereas planets are read through many aspects, some quite wide, Parts are mostly valid in close conjunction/ opposition though in isolation their position can still suggest a biographical feature worth noting. Today astrologers rarely use more than the Part of Fortune. This could be a limitation. However be warned not all Parts may apply so efficiently as here. For one thing Israel’s is a straightforward daytime chart. Some Parts change formulae for night. I am not persuaded this works so well and it’s one of the disputed points in this area among astrologers.

Thursday, November 1, 2007



The question raised by Brother Yun, The Heavenly Man’s, most famous miracle - a spectacular prison escape hard to contest seeing it was reported on the news and people lost their jobs over it - is less did it happen than would its occurrence have to constitute one of the best attested, most remarkable miracles since the Book of Acts? I mean…there are usually limits!

Not to know about Brother Yun is to perhaps to miss out on something, something beyond St Peter and Jackie Chan - of which in a sense Yun is the Christian version without making it to film. It is also something to run against ideas like those of the sceptical philosopher, David Hume, on the miraculous. The celebrated Humean maxim is: "That no testimony is sufficient to establish a miracle, unless the testimony be of such a kind, that its falsehood would be more miraculous, than the fact, which it endeavours to establish...” Well, if not miraculous it would be extraordinary to deny Yun is out of Chinese jail seeing he’s now residing in Germany. His wanted status appears sufficiently attested by arguments with Chinese authorities over him by the embassies of Germany and Myanmar. And if improbably the biographer of the best-seller, The Heavenly Man, was lying about diplomatic incidents wouldn’t the Chinese government, which doesn’t exactly shine in the book, and other governments be keen to deny the facts?


Liu Zhenying, Brother Yun called “The Heavenly Man” was born in poverty in 1957 in Nanyang in the central and most highly populated Chinese province of Henan. It is the province from which since Hudson Taylor’s work in the nineteenth century Protestant missions have spread out into China. His farming family had traces of Taoist allegiance through the father and a vague awareness through his illiterate mother of a Christianity she later resumed following the cure from cancer of her husband. After conversion and deep religious experiences during adolescence Yun rose to a degree of prominence as preacher and organizer within the Chinese House Church movement which especially at the time of the Cultural Revolution in the seventies was persecuted – it still periodically is so today but less so and less widely as a major threat to the nation.

If you want to have an impression of rural China and the hidden world of house churches you only have to read The Heavenly Man by Paul Hattaway (Monarch Books, 2002). It’s emphatically not a story for the faint hearted due to details regarding torture of which Yun would have more than his share and surviving which is part of a larger aura of miracle around him.

Chinese media was reasonably familiar with Yun either because of his supposed threat to authority or wanted status. He was the subject of many a public poster, had been arrested thirty times, escaped custody many times but done a couple of stints in jail and on one occasion was - sort of - miraculously released on the distinctly exceptional basis his stubbornness suggested he was too unteachable to do anything with. Other escapes or releases however don’t begin to compare with the escape of May ‘97. When he was arrested and imprisoned in March that year his judge and everyone was determined he would not escape so he was sent to a maximum security jail in Zhengzhou, Henan. Yun had been arrested because he had attended a meeting of leaders aimed to achieve greater unity of the Christian groups, something interpreted by spies of the secret police as a political move opposed to national stability. The Chinese government seems never to feel very secure in itself!

The arrest was both photographed and videoed. Trying his luck as usual Yun had jumped from a window but this time injured his feet. Police then kicked and trod on Yun fracturing his legs and once inside jail in the course of innumerable interrogations and beatings his broken legs get beaten leaving him screaming in agony and the result was that his legs turned black and presumably would have gone gangrene and needing eventual amputation. His judge had in fact said to Yun when he admitted he would try to preach the gospel again if he escaped and was given the chance: “ You delinquent! I’m going to break your legs permanently so you’ll never escape again”. Yun got known in the jail as the “crazy cripple” who was regularly carried everywhere by three prisoners designated to the job. His pain was so intense that to sleep at all he had to rest with his legs up against the wall. His situation and long term prospects were so ghastly that finally he felt let down by God.


Two months later on May 5th, a Christian prisoner in an adjoining cell gave Yun the message God intended him to escape which at the time seemed absurb - short of crawling out to be shot in the back it what could it mean given Yun’s personal condition and his jail?. Rather than encouraged by the message it only brought out all of Yun’s gathering depression and triggered an intense argument with God based on passages of Jeremiah which he was reading though he knew whole tracts of the Bible by heart, Chinese style. When he reached a certain passage of warning and promise to Jeremiah Yun suddenly had an intense vision (such seem to feature widely in Chinese culture and Christianities). He saw his wife, who had also been arrested, out of prison and making medicines. He asked her about her release; her only reply was to ask why not open “the iron door”. The vision ended there and Yun heard the voice of God say “this is the hour of your salvation”. Acting on the instant in obedience almost blindly Yun did the only thing he could which was knock on the wall using the signal to be taken to the toilet for which he would have to be carried outside the cell.

Brother Xu appeared at his cell to carry him but promptly commanded him, before returning to his cell for toothbrush and bathroom regalia for himself: “you must escape now”. This was hardly feasible when crippled Yun would need to pass down through 3 floors with 3 iron gates each regularly watched by two armed guards, then cross a prison yard with a further guarded gate to the outside world plus the time was 8 in the morning when there was a lot of activity in the prison. Whenever a prisoner left a cell for anything a gate to the corridor was locked from the outside so there was no chance of exit.

A sort of dream sequence now takes over which if the book has so far periodically made the reader nauseous with its tortures might now leave one feeling a bit dizzy. No longer thinking how and why he is even moving Yun propels himself towards the first gate and because someone is entering it accompanied by one of the two guards of the gate he manages to slip through unobserved because a telephone suddenly rings temporarily distracting the other guard of the gate who runs off. Moving down to the next floor Yun picks up a broom from the wall which makes him looks like he’s on a working job. The next floor has an iron gate that is occasionally left open because a guard would always be on duty day and night beside it. The voice of the Holy Spirit now tells Yun “the God of Peter” is his God and he must go through. The guard is staring straight at Yun but somehow dazed with it so that Yun passes straight through this second gate after which no other guards either on the descent or out into the yard manage to see him as he carries his broom (or if they do they presumably decide he must be a worker).

Yun is still human and realistic enough to fear he must surely be shot in the back as he crosses the open yard in full view of the prison compound towards the main entrance yet still nobody sees or stops him. When he reaches the main gates these are mysteriously ajar. Just as he exits, a yellow taxi stops at the gates of the prison and he automatically gets in giving the address of a Christian family in the city he knows who will need to receive him and pay for the fare he doesn’t have. When he arrives at their home there is great excitement but minimal shock as the family had been told in a vision while at prayer the day before that Yun would escape and call on them as the first thing. Knowing this they had already arranged a secret hiding place for him. Meanwhile…

It’s not long before alarm is raised road blocks are put up around the city, a hunt is on and Yun’s escape is on the news but Yun has already left on a bicycle with a member of his protector’s family steering him down small alleyways to avoid the blocks that were set up. The city hunt is then made more difficult by the intervention of a sudden violent storm which brings on near darkness and torrential rain washing away traces which sniffer dogs could otherwise have used in pursuit. It’s only as he pedals the bike that Yun finally absorbs that his legs must actually have been healed, something a prisoner later said he had realized had to be the case when he saw Yun slip upright through the first of the three gates.

In its way the miracle, whether of healing or escape, can be seen, and has come to be seen, as a divine reply to authorities who had challenged Yun’s God with the prospect of the prisoner’s permanent injury and incarceration. Even those who have questioned this story because, “well, it’s just not possible” have no way of accounting for the simple fact of escape. If one presumes to say (as no one has) that Yun had the resources to bribe or drug all the guards we would only begin to arrive at the Humean situation where explanation finishes as or more remarkable than the given story. The loudest voices against Yun have at one time, distressingly to churches inside and outside of China who rushed to his defence, have come from a small group within the house churches pushing their own apostolic type authority as fifth generation Christians from the times of Hudson Taylor.

To be precise, what happened is that a Chinese in Germany put out a nasty report which some reasonably well known and influential house church leaders, (who when questioned later admitted they hadn't personally met and knew virtually nothing about Yun), were willing to endorse, apparently on the basis of "no smoke without fire" (and perhaps because they sensed a threat to their standing if some upstart seized the international limelight). With the venom of the Pharisees or those Nestorians who tried to wreck the work of the Franciscan, John of Montecorvino in medieval Pekin, these people concentrated not on the escape story but simply the character they were happy to assassinate portraying Yun as a modern Judas, intent on dividing and betraying churches, a greedy con man (though it is well known he and his family lives very modestly within prosperous Germany), a liar and thief. At one time Yun’s self righteous enemies thought nothing of putting his family’s lives at risk by betraying their whereabouts within Myanmar.

Yun’s breakout story is so extraordinary one feels it could well be celebrated in the kind of poetry that concludes Keat’s celebrated St Agnes Eve with its purely mythic, dreamlike tale of escape of another kind from which I excerpt lines:

Down the wide stairs a darkling way they found…
In all the house was heard no human sound.
A chain-droop'd lamp was flickering by each door….
And the long carpets rose along the gusty floor.
They glide, like phantoms, into the wide hall;
Like phantoms, to the iron porch, they glide,,,
The wakeful bloodhound rose, and shook his hide,
The key turns, and the door upon its hinges groans.
And they are gone: ay, ages long ago
These lovers fled away into the storm….

Yun too may have fled into a storm but it wasn’t ages ago and it wasn’t myth because he went on to escape China causing scandal among embassies.


There is understandably much controversy, perhaps even more, over another of Yun’s reported miracles, namely his 1984 seventy four day fast, allegedly of both food and water - for which he would needless to say require to be supernaturally sustained as he claimed to be! There is no question he was on some kind of fast, the authorities had tried to torture him out of it with beatings and electro-shock and people knew and saw he was reduced to skin and bones.

Unless you dismiss him and especially this story as a total fraud so far as one can tell Yun does earn his popular name of “Heavenly Man” because beyond his own bodily survival in so many situations of danger it looks suspiciously as though his fast was if not the trigger, then one of the major triggers to what has become the virtual spiritual explosion of Christianity within China. This is something that followed soon upon his fast seriously accelerating after 1989 when the faith moved beyond peasant circles to more middle class and intelligentsia ones.

I have yet to read his book but according to former Time magazine journalist, David Aikman, in The Beijing Factor (2002,2005), about the rise of Christianity in modern China, the situation of the rapidly growing movement he analyses is complex. There is both severity and indulgence in different regions for different reasons as the government essentially tries to limit and contain, or if possible canalize to national benefit, the trends it sees this religion, - which is probably now the main religious future of China - as encouraging.


It is hard to encompass and assess a figure like Yun who in some respects could be seen as an Asian St Francis of Assisi - certainly his character and experiences are more impressive than seriously flawed modern saints like Mother Teresa (see Sept archive). At the same time the Heavenly Man’s honestly recounted human side surprises. One wonders if even the average believer with far less experience of the divine than Yun would quite, as he frankly admits, have ignored and disobeyed the divine voice as he did over the issue that brought on such fiascos in Myanmar. It seems that Yun can be a bit exasperating by virtue of stubbornness or insensitivity (as his own very devout wife virtually attests) and in the style he himself accuses some of the best Chinese Christian leaders of being. Yun’s wife, Deling, mentions being troubled by the reckless generosity which has thought nothing of giving to strangers what to herself were treasured mementoes or what could have contributed to make a home for her and her children (who have of course greatly suffered and whose story in some respects justifies St Paul’s preference for the celibacy of evangelists). Women often have it rough from male saints!

I don’t doubt too that Yun has caused unnecessary guilt and anguish to quite a few women on subjects like abortion - which many women are forced into in China by government policy or resort to after falling victim to what seem like the periodic outbreaks of rape and violence in rural areas - which Yun calls “a great sin” and “not even an option”. He sought to avoid it for some distressed women by arranging for dirt poor families to raise infants they could not really manage as again Yun’s wife more realistically attests. Without approving all abortion or policies of the Chinese government in relation to it, such absolutist ethical positions are controversial and as I indicate in Sense and Nonsense in Right to Life (June archive) the Bible Yun knows largely by heart seems anything but a good and clear support for any unqualified right-to-life claims (these owe more to philosophy and tradition than scripture). And that’s without considering the frequency of stillbirths and miscarriages (as God’s will?) before the days of modern medicine!

But then I don’t quite appreciate Yun’s use and understanding of some biblical texts. In the case of such persons it’s perhaps a matter of just what works and at a rather visionary plane. And Yun has heavenly man saintly characteristics. He attests and it must surely be an achievement to think:

God is my witness that through all the tortures and beatings I’ve received I have never hated my persecutors. Never. I saw them as instruments of God’s blessing and his chosen vessels to purify me and make me more like Jesus.

Heroically admirable though this is, even here one has a few questions because this looks like conflating a possible result (that God can use evil for good) with divine intentions and so to arrive at the kind of Buddhist position that teaches your enemies are your greatest friends. Christianity never teaches that belief and is more nuanced about both opposition and forgiveness. Even Jesus who forgave those who crucified him called some of his enemies “vipers”. Surely Yun must believe at least some of his torturers were simply evil, a sort of devil’s agents who must be called to justice. If not, then the martyrs under the altar in Revelation who call on God to be avenged (Rev 6:10) would be wrong and Jesus should never have told the apostles they can pronounce or refuse to pronounce forgiveness for some evils. So there’s forgiveness and forgiveness in Christianity and criminals must be called to justice, a justice Christians don’t get enough of in China.

But that’s to be theological and cerebral about this whole subject and if Yun’s super saintliness releases spiritual energies in China and he has healing powers he has directed upon people including in some cases his enemies one should not be too easily critical. There’s room in the world for more saints and miracles and perhaps Yun is in himself more a miracle than even his certified one of the Henan jail.


Presently Yun is travelling the West where he is a prophetic gadfly to the churches –he is understandably enough a critic of America’s “prosperity gospel” . He is also behind the peculiar and ambitious Back to Jerusalem movement which is training believers in China and Asia to evangelize back towards Israel along the old Silk Road and other regions west minimally reached by Christianity. Christians of the Sinim Fellowship which have been the original backbone of this movement believe, not without all reason, that the biblical Sinim or Syene, whose people from “far away” will in latter days come to Israel according to Isaiah 49:12, is China. (Sinim would be ancient Hebrew’s only possible rendition of Chinim and China is named from the Chin of the Chin dynasty). Yun believes it is a Chinese destiny to reach out to the Asian nations between China and Israel before the apocalypse he anticipates.

This of course in itself belongs to the radicalism and protest position Yun has always represented within his native land. The Three –Self Patriotic Church movement which the House Church movement has always distanced itself from and formed itself in reaction to due to the high levels of political control Three Self tolerates, has not until quite recently even been permitted by the Chinese government to mention Second Advent as any belief within Christianity. The Book of Revelation, it seems, remains one of China’s more censored works just as Yun remains one of its more censored, if celebrated personalities.