Jesus or Lucifer? Santa or Satan?
The Apocalyptic Parables of Norbert Kox
by Adam Parfrey
Norbert Kox is no panty-waist Hallmark card-reading, mainstream church-loving imbecile.
The now gentle, middle-aged Norbert Kox--"Norb" to friends--began his life as a badass biker, a guy who fought all comers at bars. Once he slit the throat of a barfly with the aid of a pool cue. In his early days, Norb stripped and painted motorcycles and cars, kind of like a Northern Wisconsin Von Dutch. According to his friend David Damkoehler, a Green Bay art professor: "While [Norbert] was a biker his actions were legendary. People who encountered the early Norb recount vivid, vulgar acts done with a flair and an originality that compares with the most outrageous performance art of the time."
A bad acid trip--a really, really bad trip--led Norb to come to grips with his "Born to Lose" mania, and explore the other side of the fence:
It was the summer of 1974 at a motorcycle hill climb in Wisconsin Rapids; we would always go a day ahead of time and party hard until the hill climb.
I never experimented much with LSD. That night when the acid was being passed out, I was already stoned and overconfident. When I said I would take two hits, my friend wasn't able to dissuade me, knowing I had never done more than a half-hit before.
Before long, the acid was swimming in my mind, and everything around was either comical or beautiful. Everything that moved had a tail like a comet, and everything that shined had a million sparks. It was blowing my mind. I remember thinking, "Wow! This is fantastic." But the beauty was intermittently shattered by ugly visions and obscene words. The force was closing in on me and I started to feel its effect.
I became trapped in a circle of events, events which always brought me back to the same spot, but each time it would occur I became a little more frightened. Events would happen exactly the same as before. It was not within my power to change one thing, not even the words I would speak. What I saw was an exact recurrence of previous events; the only thing different were my thoughts. I became more and more paranoid each time around.
Vicious dogs were in the air all around, snarling. Everyone was walking through fire, which wasn't unusual for our bunch except for the frequency and order it was happening. My brother Magoo was wearing an underwater snorkling mask. He broke the glass out while it was still on his face. He would laugh hideously, waving a broken-off car antenna, sparks flying in every direction. Fear gripped me deeper as I thought to myself, "I have to talk to someone. I am so scared, I've never been this frightened before." Then another guy I knew, Teen Angel, would jump out of the trunk of his car, and a new spark of hope would lighten my heart as I rushed towards him, then as quickly as he appeared, he was gone. I thought if only I could get some sleep, I might find rest. I knew I could not take much more. I would start to head for the tent, but only a few steps later I would stumble and begin to fall. Then I would find myself staring at the Coleman lantern while the moths would land in the fire and die. Every episode ended at the Coleman lantern, where it began, and then the horrible sights would begin yet again, and I knew I was in for another lap.
While at the lantern, I would feel a certain temporary relief. I would seem to recompose my senses a little, somehow hoping that it was all over, but still knowing in my mind that the repeating chaos had just begun. Soon the fear would grip deep in my bowels. Was I alive, or dead? There was no way for me to know. I prayed that it was all my imagination and that the gang was just trying to freak me out. But to my dismay I would find myself staring once again at Magoo, seeing him through the shiny glass of the snorkling mask, which would then again twist and break, glass falling down his heavy beard. It's one thing to watch the Twilight Zone tv show, it's another thing to live a creepy episode over and over again. I was crying, I was peeing my pants. I thought I would die of fear, but when death didn't come, I thought that I had already died and gone to hell. I'd been through these hell circles four, five, six times, and then they were still going. By now I had almost given up hope thinking that I'd ever see my family again. I was in another world. If I was not dead, I was a zombie locked in an insane asylum.
I wanted to repent. I wanted another chance. "Oh God," I said, "don't let me be like this forever." I do not know how long I prayed, or all that I said, but God did hear me.
The air began to feel different. The ice-cold chill had melted away in the summer breeze. the cases of beer which had been stacked high the last time around were now empty cans and torn cardboard. The perspiration evaporated from my forehead and I began to collect my thoughts. I could not believe it. It was too good to be true. Had hell rejected me, or was Satan just building up for the big one?
(--From Norbert Kox¹s unpublished, 900-page book, Six Nights Till Morning)
After being sent to hell, Norb repented and came up the other side. Like the mythological entity, Sol Invictus, the sun god. The drug-taking hell-raising alcoholic Norbert Kox gave away all his possessions, and brought a bible with him out to he Wisconsin forest to intensely study the word of God, and become a mystic. Between cave explorations and creating a kind of monastery filled with his Visionary Art, Norb came to grips with essential realizations that still drive him today.
Norbert's research impales the sacred cows of contemporary Christianity with truck-sized holes. Armed with findings from his investigations, Norbert paints startling, even gruesome canvases in which one can see the influences of Mattias Grünewald, Salvador Dali, even Joe Coleman.
In his readings of biblical text, in the original Greek and Hebrew, Norbert discovered that what contemporaries believe to be Christ is actually a demonic imposter. The way the word "Jesus" is spelled and pronounced has nothing to do with the way it was conveyed in the original holy book--as "Yesu" (yay-soo). The letter "J," as Norbert found, was the invention of a 16th century German printer, a fancy way of depicting the letter "I."
Jesus, Yesu. Semantics. Pronunciation. Big deal. So what. And as some historians have discovered, such as Acharya S. in her book, The Christ Conspiracy, or J. M. Robertson in his tome, Pagan Christs, the idea of Jesus Christ has been assimilated from a multitude of pagan cultures. The crucifixion. The dates of Christmas and Easter. The Passion Play. All of it.
Norbert Kox directs your attention to the words of Yesu that preach against "prophets of deceit which cause my people to forget my name." The Christ personified in the iconic Warner Sallman illustration of the blonde-haired high-cheekboned European-looking "Jesus" is a demonic pretense. Norbert backs up that assertion with his artwork; one of his most famous paintings is of a demonic entity poking through his Warner Sallman-type disguise. Norbert discovered that the word "Jesus" adds up to 666 by his numbering system, a bible code whispered to him by Holy inspiration 20 years ago, and not by Michael Drosnin's recent bestselling book. "I just about fell over when I discovered that about the word Jesus. Lucifer also adds up to 666."
Investigations into false beliefs occcupy much of Norbert's time and attention. The Catholic church is chockablock full of them, he says, including such things as incorruptible bodies, miraculous visions, tens of thousands of gruesome holy relics spread across the world in the form of bleeding statues, appearances in the sky and on windowpanes and tortillas of the Holy Virgin, and other forms of unsavory phenomena. One of the biggest lies of the modern age is the supposed Christian link invested into the person of Santa Claus, an entity Norbert calls "Satan Claws." As Norbert wrote for the December 1986 edition of the very small publication, The Wisconsin Caver:
The origin of the Santa Claus myth has been traced through the ancient religious traditions and beliefs of many cultures. In most European countries the Christ Child is the traditional "gift-bearer." Kris Kringle is the corrupted form of the German Christkindel. In modern Christmas tradition Kris Kringle and Santa Claus are synonymous.
Santa is referred to as "the children¹s Christmas deity," but we all know that Santa Claus is not really the Christkindel. Then what deity is he? Another of Santa¹s names is Saint Nicholas, and an archaic name for the Devil is "old Nick," viz. jolly old Saint Nick. He swore to pose as God, and to sit upon his throne in the north. Santa is an anagram, can you figure it out?
Zeus, a prototype of Santa Claus, was identified in Norse Mythology as Odin or Wotan, "god of the sky." Odin was revered for his wisdom. "From his high throne is Asgard, he could see all of heaven and earth." Asgard was the farthest point north, viz. Santa¹s throne at the North Pole from where he knows and sees all. Odin's (Zeus') Eye is also called "the All-Seeing Eye."
"Odin was believed to bestow special gifts at Yuletide to those who honored him by approaching his sacred fir tree." (Babylon Mystery Religion, p. 165.)
The idea of Santa Claus riding through the sky in a sleigh drawn by reindeer may have been derived from ancient sun-god myths. The pagan god Mithra rode through the sky in the mule-drawn chariot of the sun-god. He passed through the underworld at night. Is Santa Claus the image of Mithra?
The early Santa Claus, "Father Christmas," with evergreen holly and scepter, was a representation of Father Zeus, or Jupiter.
Magistrates and generals, in celebrations, donned the costume of Jupiter. With special robes and reddened face, they carried a laurel branch scepter and wore a laurel wreath of their head. Another name for Santa Claus is Kris Kringle, which is a corrupted form of the German Christkindel (Christ Child). The Magi confused the Christ child with Mithra. Thus Mithra, the deified Nimrod, is the image of Kris Kringle. Nimrod, the founder of Babylon, can undoubtedly be identified as the first Santa Claus.
In Dark Age Germany a play about the Garden of Eden was performed each Christmas, using a fir tree decked with apples. The "Paradise Tree" was later accomodated to home use. Eating apples or fruit from the Paradise or Christmas tree was slightly rebellious, but once the first bite was taken, it was not long before the tree was bare. Another custom was the "Christmas Pyramid." A wooden pyramid was decorated with candles and shiny decorations, and placed in the living room of the home. About the 15th century, people began to combine the tree and pyramid, moving the decorations to the tree. By the 17th century even the candles were moved to the tree, thus eliminating the wooden structure, the tree itself becoming the pyramid.
The Christmas tree idea actually originated in Egypt long before the so-called Christmas era. Other civilizations also revered a sacred tree. The Buddhists worshipped in caves, and their sacred tree was found inscribed in almost every cave, according to the Encyclopedia of Freemasonry. Historical records prove that Santa Claus and the Christmas tree were associated with pagan religion, and both have been worshipped in ancient cave temples.
Ideas communicated by Norbert Kox through his artwork are not very popular with individuals pushing the status quo. An August, 1999 news story in the Associated Press discusses Norbert¹s latest run-in with powerful church entities, who consider him blasphemous. As it turns out, the controversy backfired on the offended church leaders. attendance of the exhibit, and monitary donations the museum escalated drastically as a result of there ire:
GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP)--A national Roman Catholic group is protesting that a museum exhibit is blasphemous.
The exhibit, which opened in early July at the Neville Public Museum in Green Bay, uses rosaries, crucifixes and other religious objects to bring out artist Norbert Kox's interpretations of biblical themes.
The display includes the Virgin Mary depicted as the "Great Harlot'' and a Christ wearing a necklace with the Satanic symbol "666.''
"It's very clear that there's no logical conclusion other than that Mr. Norbert Kox wants to stick it to Catholics," said William Donohue, president of the New York-based Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights.
Donohue said he is not seeking removal of the exhibit, but he wants the museum's board to put a written statement next to the exhibit explaining that its members don't personally condone it.
The museum's governing board, an advisory group appointed by Brown County Executive Nancy Nusbaum, voted Wednesday to support the display.
Nusbaum said her office had received two negative phone calls and two negative letters since the exhibit opened in early July. No local Catholic diocesan officials or clergy members have voiced complaints, she said.
Clergy throughout the area have been invited to attend a discussion of the exhibit with the artist tonight, she said.
Brown County runs the museum through a partnership with Neville Public Museum Corp., which funds all exhibits and related activities. The corporation's board plans to discuss Donohue's protests next week.
The New Franken artist contends that his exhibit, called "To Hell and Back,'' is not meant to be offensive. Kox said he carries the Bible with him and regularly quotes scripture.
Kox has said his pictures convey his belief that "pagan teachings have crept into the church,'' and that the faithful must think for themselves. [indent end]
Wanting people to think for themselves? If that¹s Christianity, that's the sort of belief
the editor of Apocalypse Culture would not mind being part of. But it's
clearly not the sort of Christianity manifested by most of its organized variables in the world today.
* * * * *
Norbert Kox¹s work is seen on the cover and in the interior of the Dilettante Press book, The End is Near: Visions of Apocalypse, Millennium and Utopia, with text by Roger Manley, Stephen Jay Gould, Howard Finster, The Dalai Lama, John the Divine and Adam Parfrey. His artwork has shown in Milwaukee, Los Angeles, New York, Chicago and elsewhere. To get in touch with Norbert Kox, write to nhkox@yahoo.