Yom Kippur and High Priest Rite

Once a year on Yom Kippur, the day of atonement, the High Priest would prepare to enter the Holy of Holies in the Temple. He would dress in his ephod, decorated with gems representing the twelve tribes of Israel (i.e., Jacob) and his "Mitznefet" or mitre/ turban, symbolizing the sacred mountain and ushnisha of the temple crown. In his hand he held the sacred incense pot (likely containing "pot").

The priest would carry a string with goat's blood on it into the Holy of Holies, and if it turned white when he came out, it meant that the sins of the children of Israel had been forgiven, if it remained red, the Lord was displeased.

When the priest prepared to enter the Holy of Holies and Well of Souls underneath the Foundation Stone, he was expected to be completely pure in thought and deed. If he had even one impure thought, he would be struck dead instantly by the Divine flame. This is perhaps a reference to the fire alter on the Rock, upon which some believe was burned cannabis and/or acacia, the sacred wood.

As a precaution, a chain was attached to the priest's ankle before entering. Other priests would hold this chain to render assistance in the event he pulled the chain or was struck dead by the Divine flame.

After some time praying before the burning altar, the priest would proceed down the stairs at one end of the Rock into the Well of Souls cave underneath. There he found the Ark of the Covenant, said to contain the Talmud scriptures and heavenly manna. Made with some blend of entheogenic substances, such as acacia or Amanita muscaria, he would eat the manna and drink his brew (He-brew?) as a Holy Communion to induce visions.

As the Well of Souls reverberated with the eerie sounds of voices, he might chant from the Talmud to focus his visions. As ordinary consciousness was replaced by Unity Consciousness, he would reach into his hoshen and take out the Urim and Thummim.

"...the Urim and Thummim...shall be upon Aaron's heart when he goeth before the Lord: and Aaron shall bear the judgment of the children of Israel upon his heart before the Lord continually." - Exodus 28:30.

Described as flat crystals or transparent gems, he might hold the Urim and Thummim over his eyes like spectacles - one red and one green. Indeed, this is precisely what the founder of Mormonism Joseph Smith did to enhance his visions. Looking through these would have been much like gazing into a crystal ball to try and divine God's will or see into the future. When combined with entheogens, psychoacoustics, symbolisms and meditation ritual, it is easy to see how the priest would have experienced an extraordinary religious vision.

Exiting the Holy of Holies, the priest would present the bloody string as proof of God's displeasure with his children. Sharing his vision with the other priests, they would begin anew to please God and do His bidding in the coming year.

In modern day rites, the Jewish Temple ephod remains a central symbol of Freemasonry and is commonly worn by priests in the Mormon Church. Even the Catholic pope and priests sometimes wear an ephod as a symbol for the first piece of clothing given to Adam and Eve. It harkens back to a time when sacred food and sacred spaces went hand in hand.

* The above description is a composite taken from several reputable sources, but can only be considered a conjecture based on the available evidence.