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Stolen Legacy: Greek Philosophy is
Stolen Egyptian Philosophy
by
George G. M. James, Ph.D.
University of Arkansas, Pine Bluff
This work was originally published in New York by Philosophical Library in 1954. The content
herein has been slightly edited to mark word corrections and in its organization to assist
readability.
The author, George Granville Monah James was born in Georgetown, Guyana, South America.
His parents were Reverend Linch B. and Margaret E. James. George studied at Durham
University in Britain and after a period at the University of London, he earned his doctorate at
Columbia University in New York, NY. He then qualified to teach Mathematics, Latin, and
Greek. Later he was professor of Logic and Greek at Livingstone College in Salisbury, North
Carolina for two years, before teaching at the University of Arkansas, Pine Bluff. The author has
also written the following pamphlets: 1. Health Week in New Castle; 2. Intermarriage (published
in London, England); 3. Black People Under Germany (published in New York); 4. The Need of
a New Education for the Subject Peoples of the World (published in Arkansas, U.S.A.); 5. The
Probable Causes of Religious Apathy in our Institutions of Higher Learning and the Proposal of
a New Naturalism (published in Arkansas, U.S.A). And second, he has also authored the
following articles, titled: The Church and the New Mentality; Religion is an Inductive and
Progressive Science; The Anti-Classical Wave; The First Step In Negro Reconstruction; Know
Thyself (a series of 12 articles published in the New York Age and the Zion Quarterly); The
Influence of Mathematics Upon the Mentality and Character of Students (published in the
Georgia Herald).
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Stolen Legacy: Greek Philosophy is Stolen Egyptian Philosophy by George G. M. James
The Journal of Pan African Studies 2009 eBook
Contents
Introduction
(A) Characteristics of Greek Philosophy; (B) The Aims of The Book
Part I
Chapter I
Greek Philosophy Is Stolen Egyptian Philosophy
1. The teachings of the Egyptian Mysteries reached other lands centuries before it reached
Athens; 2. The authorship of the individual doctrines is extremely doubtful; 3. The chronology
of Greek philosophers is mere speculation; 4. The compilation of the history of Greek
philosophy was the plan of Aristotle executed by his school.
Chapter II
So-called Greek Philosophy was Alien to the Greeks and their Conditions of Life
The period of Greek philosophy (640–322 B.C.) was a period of internal and external wars and
was unsuitable for producing philosophers.
Chapter III
Greek Philosophy was the Offspring of the Egyptian Mystery System
1. The Egyptian theory of salvation became the purpose of Greek philosophy; 2. Circumstances
of identity between the Egyptian and Greek systems are shown; 3. The abolition of Greek
philosophy with the Egyptian Mysteries identifies them; 4. How the African continent gave its
culture to the Western World.
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Stolen Legacy: Greek Philosophy is Stolen Egyptian Philosophy by George G. M. James
The Journal of Pan African Studies 2009 eBook
Chapter IV
The Egyptians Educated The Greeks
1. The effects of the Persian Conquest; 2. The effects of the Conquest of Egypt by Alexander
the Great; 3. The Egyptians were the first to civilize the Greeks; 4. Alexander visits the Oracle
of Ammon in the Oasis of Siwah.
Chapter V
The Pre-Socratic Philosophers and the Teachings Ascribed to Them
1. The earlier Ionion philosophers and their doctrines; 2. Pythagoras and his doctrines; 3. The
Eleatic philosophers and their doctrines. 4. The later Ionion philosophers and their doctrines; 5.
Summary of conclusions concerning the Pre-Socratic philosophers and the history of the Four
Qualities and Four Elements. (a) The doctrines of the early Ionic, the Eleatic and the later Ionic
philosophers and Pythagoras are traced to their Egyptian origin; (b) The doctrine of the Four
Qualities and Four Elements is traced to its Egyptian origin; (c) Plagiarism shown to be a
common practice among the Greek philosophers who borrowed from one another but chiefly
from Pythagoras who obtained his ideas from the Egyptians; (d) The doctrine of the Atom by
Democritus is traced to its Egyptian origin, as well as his large number of books. He taught
nothing new.
Chapter VI
The Athenian Philosophers
1. SOCRATES
1. His Life: (a) Date and place of birth; (b) His economic status and personality; (c) His trial
and death; (d) Crito’s attempt to smuggle him out of prison; (e) Phaedo describes the final scene
before his death.
2. Doctrines: The doctrines of (a) The Nous; (b) The Supreme Good; (c) Opposites and
harmony; (d) The immortality of the soul and (e) Self knowledge.
3. Summary of Conclusions: (a) The doctrines of Socrates are traced to their Egyptian origin, as
he taught nothing new; (b) The importance of the farewell conversation of Socrates with his
pupils and friends is set forth.
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Stolen Legacy: Greek Philosophy is Stolen Egyptian Philosophy by George G. M. James
The Journal of Pan African Studies 2009 eBook
2. PLATO
(I) His early life; (II) His travels and academy; (III) His disputed writings; (IV) His doctrines.
1. The theory of ideas and its application to natural phenomena including (a) the real and
unreal; (b) the Nous and (c) creation.
2. The ethical doctrines concerning (a) the highest good; (b) definition of virtue and; (c) the
cardinal virtues.
3. The doctrine of the Ideal state whose attributes are compared with the attributes of the soul
and justice.
(V) Summary of Conclusions:
(a) The doctrines of Plato are traced to their Egyptian origin, as he taught nothing new;
(b) Magic is shown to be the key to the interpretation of ancient religion and philosophy;
(c) The authorship of his books is disputed by modern scholars, and ancient historians deny his
authorship of the Republic and Timeas;
(d) The allegory of the charioteer and winged steeds is traced to its Egyptian origin.
3. ARISTOTLE
(I) (a) His early life and training; (b) His own list of books; (c) Other list of books; (II)
Doctrines; (III) Summary of Conclusions.
A The doctrines are traced to their Egyptian origin, as he taught nothing new; B (1) The library
of Alexandria was the true source of Aristotle’s large numbers of books; (2) The lack of
uniformity between the list of books points to doubtful authorship; C The discrepancies and
doubts in this life.
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Stolen Legacy: Greek Philosophy is Stolen Egyptian Philosophy by George G. M. James
The Journal of Pan African Studies 2009 eBook
Chapter VII
The Curriculum of The Egyptian Mystery System
1. The education of Egyptian Priests according to their Orders;
2. The education of the Egyptian Priests in: (a) The Seven Liberal Arts; (b) Secret systems of
languages and mathematical symbolism; (c) Magic.
3. A comparison of the curriculum of the Egyptian Mystery System with the list of books said
to be drawn up by Aristotle himself.
Chapter VIII:
The Memphite Theology is the Basis of all Important Doctrines of Greek Philosophy
1.
(a) The history, description and complete text of the Memphite Theology are given and the
subject matter is divided into three parts;
(b) The text of the first part is followed by the philosophy which the first part teaches;
(c) The text of the second part is followed by the philosophy which the second part teaches;
(d) The text of the third part is followed by the philosophy which the third part teaches.
2. The Memphite Theology is shown to be the source of modern scientific knowledge;
(a) The identity of the creation of the Ennead with the Nebular Hypothesis and;
(b) The identity of the Sun God Atom with the atom of Science.
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Stolen Legacy: Greek Philosophy is Stolen Egyptian Philosophy by George G. M. James
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3. The Memphite Theology opens great possibilities for modern scientific research:
(a) The Greek concept of the atom is shown to be erroneous; (b) With the new interpretation of
the atom the Memphite Theology provides a vast field of scientific secrets yet to be discovered.
Part II
Chapter IX
Social Reformation through the New Philosophy of African Redemption
1. Social Reformation
The knowledge that the African continent gave civilization the Arts and Sciences, Religion and
Philosophy is des- tined to produce a change in the mentality both of the White and Black
people. 2. There are three persons in the drama of Greek philosophy: (a) Alexander the Great;
(b) Aristotle’s School and; (c) The Ancient Roman Government who are responsible for a false
tradition about Africa and the social plight of its peoples; (3) Both the White and Black people
are common victims of a false tradition about Africa and this fact makes both races partners in
the solution of the problem of racial reformation. (4) The methods suggested for racial
reformation: (a) Reeducation of both groups by worldwide dissemination of Africa’s
contribution to civilization; (b) The abandonment of the false worship of Greek intellect; (c)
Special attention must be given to the re-education of missionaries and a constant demand made
for a change in missionary policy.
2. The New Philosophy of African Redemption
1. A statement and explanation of the new philosophy of African Redemption are made; 2.
Black people must cultivate methods of counteraction against: (a) The false worship of Greek
intellect; (b) Missionary literature and exhibition and; (c) must demand a change in missionary
policy.
Appendix
Notes
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Stolen Legacy: Greek Philosophy is Stolen Egyptian Philosophy by George G. M. James
The Journal of Pan African Studies 2009 eBook
Introduction
Characteristics of Greek Philosophy
The term Greek philosophy, to begin with is a misnomer, for there is no such philosophy in
existence. The ancient Egyptians had developed a very complex religious system, called the
Mysteries, which was also the first system of salvation.
As such, it regarded the human body as a prison house of the soul, which could be liberated from
its bodily impediments, through the disciplines of the Arts and Sciences, and advanced from the
level of a mortal to that of a God. This was the notion of the summum bonum or greatest good, to
which all men must aspire, and it also became the basis of all ethical concepts. The Egyptian
Mystery System was also a Secret Order, and membership was gained by initiation and a pledge
to secrecy. The teaching was graded and delivered orally to the Neophyte; and under these
circumstances of secrecy, the Egyptians developed secret systems of writing and teaching, and
forbade their Initiates from writing what they had learnt.
After nearly five thousand years of prohibition against the Greeks, they were permitted to enter
Egypt for the purpose of their education. First through the Persian invasion and secondly through
the invasion of Alexander the Great. From the sixth century B.C. therefore to the death of
Aristotle (322 B.C.) the Greeks made the best of their chance to learn all they could about
Egyptian culture; most students received instructions directly from the Egyptian Priests, but after
the invasion by Alexander the Great, the Royal temples and libraries were plundered and
pillaged, and Aristotle’s school converted the library at Alexandria into a research centre. There
is no wonder then, that the production of the unusually large number of books ascribed to
Aristotle has proved a physical impossibility, for any single man within a life time.
The history of Aristotle’s life, has done him far more harm than good, since it carefully avoids
any statement relating to his visit to Egypt, either on his own account or in company with
Alexander the Great, when he invaded Egypt. This silence of history at once throws doubt upon
the life and achievements of Aristotle. He is said to have spent twenty years under the tutorship
of Plato, who is regarded as a Philosopher, yet he graduated as the greatest of Scientists of
Antiquity. Two questions might be asked: (a) how could Plato teach Aristotle what he himself
did not know?; and (b) why should Aristotle spend twenty years under a teacher from whom he
could learn nothing? This bit of history sounds incredible. Again, in order to avoid suspicion
over the extraordinary number of books ascribed to Aristotle, history tells us that Alexander the
Great, gave him a large sum of money to get the books. Here again the history sounds incredible,
and three statements must here be made.
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Stolen Legacy: Greek Philosophy is Stolen Egyptian Philosophy by George G. M. James
The Journal of Pan African Studies 2009 eBook
(a) In order to purchase books on science, they must have been in circulation so as to enable
Aristotle to secure them. (b) If the books were in circulation before Aristotle purchased them,
and since he is not supposed to have visited Egypt at all, then the books in question must have
been circulated among Greek philosophers. (c) If circulated among Greek philosophers, then we
would expect the subject matter of such books to have been known before Aristotle’s time, and
consequently he could not be credited either with producing them or introducing new ideas of
science.
Another point of considerable interest to be accounted for was the attitude of the Athenian
government towards this so-called Greek philosophy, which it regarded as foreign in origin and
treated it accordingly. Only a brief study of history is necessary to show that Greek philosophers
were undesirable citizens, who throughout the period of their investigations were victims of
relentless persecution, at the hands of the Athenian government. Anaxagoras was imprisoned and
exiled; Socrates was executed; Plato was sold into slavery and Aristotle was indicted and exiled;
while the earliest of them all, Pythagoras, was expelled from Croton in Italy. Can we imagine the
Greeks making such an about turn, as to claim the very teachings which they had at first
persecuted and openly rejected? Certainly, they knew they were usurping what they had never
produced, and as we enter step by step into our study the greater do we discover evidence which
leads us to the conclusion that Greek philosophers were not the authors of Greek philosophy, but
the Egyptian Priests and Hierophants.
Aristotle died in 322 B.C. not many years after he had been aided by Alexander the Great to
secure the largest quantity of scientific books from the Royal Libraries and Temples of Egypt. In
spite however of such great intellectual treasure, the death of Aristotle marked the death of
philosophy among the Greeks, who did not seem to possess the natural ability to advance these
sciences. Consequently history informs us that the Greeks were forced to make a study of Ethics,
which they also borrowed from the Egyptian “summum bonum” or greatest good. The two other
Athenian Philosophers must be mentioned here, I mean Socrates and Plato; who also became
famous in history as philosophers and great thinkers. Every school boy believes that when he
hears or reads the command “know thyself”, he is hearing or reading words which were uttered
by Socrates. But the truth is that the Egyptian temples carried inscriptions on the outside
addressed to Neophytes and among them was the injunction “know thyself”. Socrates copied
these words from the Egyptian Temples, and was not the author. All mystery temples, inside and
outside of Egypt carried such inscriptions, just like the weekly bulletins of our modern Churches.
Similarly, every school boy believes that when he hears or reads the names of the four cardinal
virtues, he is hearing or reading names of virtues determined by Plato. Nothing has been more
misleading, for the Egyptian Mystery System contained ten virtues, and from this source Plato
copied what have been called the four cardinal virtues, justice, wisdom, temperance, and
courage. It is indeed surprising how, for centuries, the Greeks have been praised by the Western
World for intellectual accomplishments which belong without a doubt to the Egyptians or the
peoples of North Africa.
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Stolen Legacy: Greek Philosophy is Stolen Egyptian Philosophy by George G. M. James
The Journal of Pan African Studies 2009 eBook
Another noticeable characteristic of Greek philosophy is the fact that most of the Greek
philosophers used the teachings of Pythagoras as their model; and consequently they have
introduced nothing new in the field of philosophy. Included in the Pythagorean system we find
the doctrines of (a) opposites (b) Harmony (c) Fire (d) Mind, since it is composed of fire atoms,
(e) Immortality, expressed as transmigration of Souls, (f) The summum bonum or the purpose of
philosophy. And these of course are reflected in the systems of Heraclitus, Parmenides,
Democritus, Socrates, Plato and Aristotle.
The next thing that is peculiar about Greek philosophy is its use in literature. The Egyptian
Mystery System was the first secret Order of History and the publication of its teachings was
strictly prohibited. This explains why Initiates like Socrates did not commit to writing their
philosophy, and why the Babylonians and Chaldaeans who were very closely associated with
them also refrained from publishing those teachings.
We can at once see how easy it was for an ambitious and even envious nation to claim a body of
unwritten knowledge which would make them great in the eyes of the primitive world. The
absurdity however, is easily recognized when we remember that the Greek language was used to
translate several systems of teachings which the Greeks could not succeed in claiming. Such
were the translation of Hebrew Scriptures into Greek, called the Septuagint; and the translation
of the Christian Gospels, Acts and the Epistles in Greek, still called the Greek New Testament. It
is only the unwritten philosophy of the Egyptians translated into Greek that has met with such an
unhappy fate: a legacy stolen by the Greeks.
On account of reasons already given, I have been compelled to handle the subject matter of this
book, in the way it has been handled: namely (a) with a frequency of repetition, because it is the
method of Greek philosophy, to use a common principle to explain several different doctrines,
and (b) the quotation and analysis of doctrines, because it is the object of this book to establish
the Egyptian Origin and this cannot be so satisfactorily done if the doctrines are not presented.
Greek philosophy is somewhat of a drama, whose chief actors were Alexander the Great,
Aristotle and his successors in the peripatetic school, and the Roman Emperor Justinian.
Alexander invaded Egypt and captured the Royal Library at Alexandria and plundered it.
Aristotle made a library of his own with plundered books, while his school occupied the building
and used it as a research centre. Finally, Justinian the Roman Emperor abolished the Temples
and schools of philosophy i.e. another name for the Egyptian Mysteries which the Greeks
claimed as their product, and on account of which, they have been falsely praised and honoured
for centuries by the world, as its greatest philosophers and thinkers.
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Stolen Legacy: Greek Philosophy is Stolen Egyptian Philosophy by George G. M. James
The Journal of Pan African Studies 2009 eBook
This contribution to civilization was really and truly made by the Egyptians and the African
continent, but not by the Greeks or the European continent. We sometimes wonder why the
people of African descent find themselves in such a social plight as they do, but the answer is
plain enough. Had it not been for this drama of Greek philosophy and its actors, the African
continent would have had a different reputation, and would have enjoyed a status of respect
among the nations of the world.
This unfortunate position of the African continent and its peoples appears to be the result of
misrepresentation upon which the structure of race prejudice has been built, i.e. the historical
world opinion that the African continent is backward, that its people are backwa …
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