"Christ was often depicted with a quartered circle surrounding his head as a symbol of his divinity, enlightenment."
It is imporatnt to remember that 'enlightment' is a healing of the mind which enables us to 'see God'.
Israel means 'seeing God' and is why Paul says in Romans:
"But it is not that the word of God has taken no effect. For they are not all Israel who are of Israel, nor are they all children because they are the seed of Abraham; but, "In Isaac your seed shall be called." That is, those who are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God; but the children of the promise are counted as the seed."
Apollo, like Christ, was the great physician of body and soul, and the rays of light, like a crown on their head, is an indication of corporeal submission to the incorporeal 'divine mind'.
Christ was crowned king of the Jews or "those who see God", but he had to die to his corporeal self to receive that honor.
Do you see? : )
We do not have to go further back than Philo to see the precursor of this 'Christian' philosophy and the significance of 'the sun crown', but we must understand middle Platonism and Philo's interpretation of it.
It is so apparent it is silly.
"The good man, then, alone sees; in reference to whom the ancients also called the prophets, seers. But he who advanced further outwards, not only seeing, but seeing God, was CALLED ISRAEL; the meaning of which name is, "SEEING GOD." But others, even if they ever do open their eyes, still bend them down towards the earth, pursuing only earthly things, and being bred ip among material objects; for the one raises his eyes to the sky, beholding the manna, the divine Logos, the heavenly, incorruptible food of the soul, which is food of contemplation: but the others fix the eye on garlic and onions, food which causes pain to the eyes, and troubles the sight"
"For my flesh is food indeed.....and this is the bread which came down from heaven, not as your fathers ate the manna and are dead, but he who eats this bread will live forever."
"And this class of men is small, indeed, in number; but in power it is very numerous and very great, so that even the whole circle of the earth cannot contain it. And it reaches even to heaven; for as it is possessed of an indescribable love of contemplation and of being always among divine objects, when it has thoroughly investigated and explained all that nature which is perceptible to the sight, it immediately proceeds onwards to that which is incorporeal and appreciable only by the intellect, without requiring the assistance of any one of the outward senses, indeed discarding even the irrational parts of the soul, and employing those parts only which are called mind and reason. Therefore, the first establisher of the
sentiments devoted to God, namely, Abraham......Again, to his grandson (Israel), the meditator on and practiser of virtue, who attained to what was good by indefatigable and incessant labours, THE CROWN which was given was the SIGHT OF GOD."
"And first of all he (Caligula) dressed himself up with the caduceus, and sandals, and mantle of Mercury, exhibiting a regularity in his disorder, a consistency in his confusion, and a ratiocination in his insanity. Afterwards, when he thought fit to do so, he laid aside these ornaments, and metamorphosed and transformed himself into Apollo, crowning his head with garlands, in the form of rays, and holding a bow and arrows in his left hand, and holding forth graces in his right.......Again, of all the attributes of Apollo, what is there which in the least degree resembles his characteristics? He (Caligula) wears a crown emitting rays all around, the artist who made it having given a most admirable representation of the beams of the sun; but how can the sun, or in fact any light at all, be a welcome object to him, and not rather night, or anything else, if there be such more completely enveloped darkness, or even anything darker than darkness itself, for the performance of his lawless actions? Since good actions do require the brilliancy of noonday for their proper display, but shameful actions, as they say, are suited to the extreme depths of Tartarus, into which they ought to be thrust in order to be concealed from sight, as is becoming.......But no doubt he with great felicity gave a new
representation of the medical skill of Apollo, for this god (Apollo) was the inventor of healing medicines......and is said to have been not only a physician but also an excellent prophet, by his oracular predictions announcing what was likely to conduce to the advantage of mankind, in order that no one, being overshadowed by uncertainty, going on without seeing his way before him like a blind man, might hastily fall into unexpected evils as if they were the greatest benefits; but that men having previously acquired a knowledge of the future as if it were really present, and looking at it with the EYE OF THEIR MIND, might guard against future evils just as they can see evils actually before them with the bodily eye, and in this way secure themselves against any irremediable disaster.....Let him (Caligula) cease, then, this pretended Apollo, from imitating that real healer of mankind, for the form of God is not a thing which is capable of being imitated by an inferior one, as good money is imitated by bad."
"therefore the meaning here is that the first-born offspring of the soul which has received the sacred seed, is purely white; being like light in which there is no obscurity, and like the most brilliant radiance: like the unclouded beam which might proceed from the rays of the sun in fine weather at midday."
"For the mind is the sight of the soul, shining transcendently with its own rays, by which the great and dense darkness which ignorance of
things sheds around is dissipated. This species of soul is not composed of the same elements as those of which the other kinds were made, but it has received a purer and more excellent essence of which the divine natures were formed; on which account the intellect naturally appears to be the only thing in us which is imperishable"
"But the likeness of the sun he (Moses) only indicates by symbols. And it is easy otherwise by means of argument to perceive this, since God is the first light, "For the Lord is my light and my Saviour,"is the language of the Psalms; and not only the light, but he is also the archetypal pattern of every other light, or rather he is more ancient and more sublime than even the archetypal model, though he is spoken of as the model; for the real model was his own most perfect word, the light, and he himself is like to no
created thing...........But according to the third signification, when he speaks of the sun, he means the divine Logos,....... For the Logos of God, when it reaches to our earthly constitution, assists and protects those who are akin to virtue, or whose inclinations lead them to virtue; so that it provides them with a complete refuge and salvation, but upon their enemies it sends irremediable overthrow and destruction. And in the fourth signification, what is meant by the sun is the God and ruler of the universe himself, as I have said already, by means of whom such offences as are irremediable, and which appear to be overshadowed and concealed, are revealed; for as all things are possible, so, likewise, all things are known to God."
"Now the whole of time being divided into two portions day and night, the sovereignty of the day the Father has assigned to the Sun, as a mighty
monarch: and that of the night he has given to the moon and to the multitude of the other stars. And the greatness of the power and sovereignty of the sun has its most conspicuous proof in what has been
already said: for he, being one and single has been allotted for his own share and by himself one half portion of all time, namely day; ......And when the sun rises all the appearances of such numbers of stars are not only obscured but absolutely disappear from the effusion of his beams;"
"If therefore the mind, which imagines itself and not God to be the cause of things, dies, that is to say, becomes inactive and contracts itself, then there is no cause of death in it; it has not absolutely destroyed
the living opinion, which attributes all power, and all exertion of power to God, but if the Sun rises, that is to say the mind which appears brilliant in us, and if it appears to see through everything and to judge everything, and not to flee from itself, it then becomes liable to death, and shall die in retaliation for the living doctrine which it has destroyed; according to which God alone is the cause of everything, being found to be wholly unable to effect any good purpose, and to be truly dead in as much as it has shown itself the interpreter of a lifeless and dead and departed doctrine."