Sunday, April 30, 2017

YOU'VE HEARD OF BELTANE AND MAY EVE
BUT WALPURGIS IS INCREASINGLY POPULAR



YOU all know about Beltane and May Eve, but few people today still remember Walpurgis Night ... which is still celebrated on a mountain top in central Germany. 

Up to 150,000 witches, pagans and the simply curious are converging for May Eve revelries on the summit of the highest peak in the Harz Mountains in central Germany Thursday night for the four-day May Day holiday weekend.
Children in spooky costumes will participate in parades and street fairs in villages on the slopes of the Brocken, the mountain immortalised in Alexander Borodin's "Night on Bald Mountain" orchestral suite.

Bonfires will light the nighttime skies on mountain tops in the Harz region as local communities held their own May Day Eve festivals marking the end of winter and the coming of summer.

In the town of Schierke, a four-hour Walpurgis Night open-air play is being held, tracing the history of the persecution of witches, with players performing writhing modern dances to Medieval music.


The day of the Saint Walburga is celebrated on May 1. 

But the night before, April 30 or May Day Eve (Beltane Eve), is called Walpurgis Night, formerly the date of the pagan festival marking the end of winter. 

Of course, its autumnal counterpart, six months later on October 31, is Halloween, Samhain.

Walpurgis Night is celebrated from the Mediterranean up to Scandinavia, but no where as much as in the forested mountains of central Germany where so many Brothers Grimm fairy tales are set.

According to Germanic legend, this festival has been associated with a witches' carnival, and on this night it was believed that witches met with the devil for one final night of revelry before being consigned to the underworld until they emerge again exactly six months later on October 31 ... Halloween.

The Harz Mountains region is the location of many German fairy tales featuring witches and goblins and the Brocken is the highest Harz peak at 1,142 metres.

For 40 years, the region was split down the middle by the fortified border between East and West Germany. 


But in the years since unification in 1990, the region has regained its title as one of the most romantic fairy-tale areas ... and spookiest.

The mountain also features in the drama "Faust" about an alchemist nobleman who sells his soul to the devil … on Walpurgis Night.

Saturday, April 29, 2017

GREEK AND ROMAN STATUES
WORE TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOATS



GLEAMING white marble and limestone sculptures dominate our image of the Mediterranean world in classical antiquity.

However, it is not generally known that ancient architecture and sculptures were once painted in vivid colours.

But now, thanks to technology, experts are delving into the "archaeo-polychromy" of ancient reliefs and sculptures. They use digital scanners to detect faint smidgens of pigment. And then they do computer projections of what the original must have looked like.

For 10 years now, the traveling exhibit GODS IN COLOR (original title in German: Bunte Götter – Die Farbigkeit antiker Skulptur) shows statues such as "Paris the Trojan Archer" (above), from the west pediment of the Aphaia Temple in Aegina, the way that scientists believe the Ancient Greeks intended them to look.

The traveling exhibition has been seen in major cities on every continent and is still heading to new cities. Watch for it at a museum near you ....

The experts stress that these mock-ups are only "best guess scenarios" of what the originals must have looked like. And there are many, many possible variations. The result is very flat and uniform.


After all, the experts are going by only minute flakes of pigment on a chin or cheek to project the color of the entire face.

No doubt the Ancient artists used varying hues, so that this bust of Caligula (left) would look much, much more lifelike than it does here in this modern mock-up.

The experts claim that even bronze statuary was often gilded and painted. We think of bronze being beautiful when it has acquired a patina of greenish age. But the Ancients thought that was dreadful. 


They went to great pains to keep their bronze statues polished so that they gleamed in the sun. They put gemstones in the eyes and they gilded the lips and the brows and eyelashes.

Be sure to watch for this traveling exhibition at a museum near you!

Friday, April 28, 2017

COLOSSUS OF RHODES TO RISE AGAIN
AS A WALK-IN, SOLAR-POWERED MUSEUM



THE Colossus of Rhodes will rise again as a walk-in, solar-powered museum ... if a group of ambitious Greek entrepreneurs find funding.

Young professionals from Greece, Spain, Italy and the United Kingdom have been inspired to take up the ambitious COLOSSUS OF RHODES PROJECT

The young professionals are planning to create a gigantic 150 meter-high museum-structure, that will house thousands of archaeological findings that have long been abandoned beneath layers of dust in several storage areas in Rhodes, simultaneously arousing the same emotions that visitors who arrived on the island more than 2,200 years ago felt.

The colossal statue will also host a cultural center and a library, while at the same time will regain its ancient function as a point reference for boats (lighthouse). 

Its size will be larger than the original structure, while its "skin" will be covered by solar panels, making it energy autonomous.

Carved by Chares of Lindon, one of antiquity's greatest sculptors, the original Colossus of Rhodes was erected in homage to the Sun god Apollo-Helios. 

As shown in the diagram at right, the original Colossus is believed to have been about 36 meters high (120 feet) on an 8-meter (25 foot) white marble plinth (compared with the Statue of Liberty's 46 meters (151 feet) on a 48-meter (159 foot) plinth.

For almost seven decades it stood over Rhodes before being destroyed by an earthquake in 226 BC.

In later years, its huge bronze and marble parts were carted off by Arab tradesmen. 

"Even lying on the ground, it is a marvel," wrote Pliny the Elder. It was so big, he said, that "few people can get their arms around its thumb".

Although historians have spent years arguing about the wonder's exact location, artists have always depicted it straddling Rhodes' imposing harbor.

Unlike the original statue, which took Chares 12 years to carve in situ, the new statue could be built in less than half that time if adequate funding is found, project organisers say. 

While the Statue of Liberty was built in France and then assembled in New York, the new Colossus is expected to be built by locals on the island.

The Colossus was included in Sidon's List of the Seven Wonders of the World compiled some 2,150 years ago along with The Pyramids, the Walls and Hanging Gardens of Babylon, the Temple of Artemis at Ephesus in modern Turkey, the Statue of Zeus at Olympia, the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus and the Lighthouse at Alexandria.

Antinous and Apollo were equated with each other by the Ancient Priests of Antinous. Flamen Antonyus Subia describes Antinous-Apollo as Guardian of Civilization:

"Antinous-Apollo is more deeply concerned with the welfare of mankind. One finds the socially conscious aspect of this religion, the ways in which it can be used to heighten the consciousness of society. Those who seek to benefit our world with the wisdom and grace that the muses inspire follow this face of Antinous whose statue has always stood in the sanctuary of Delphi on the slope of Mount Parnassus. Antinous speaks through visions, dreams and the understanding of oracles. One who loves this god seeks after wisdom and learning, and after the enlightenment of all that is veiled in darkness and ignorance."

Here is the official video for this ambitious new project:


Thursday, April 27, 2017

HUSBAND OF SLAIN GAY POLICEMAN
SAYS 'I'M SUFFERING WITHOUT HATE'



LAST week, gay French police officer Xavier Jugelé laid down his life when an Islamic extremist opened fire on Paris' Champs Elysees. 

At a memorial ceremony, Jugele’s husband, Etienne Cardiles, paid loving tribute to his late partner.

"This pain makes me feel closer to your comrades who suffer in silence like you and me," Cardiles said, holding back tears. He described Jugele as a man who lived "a life of joy and huge smiles."

"I have no hatred, Xavier, because it is not like you and does not fit with what made your heart beat," he added. "Nor what made you a guardian of the peace."

A spokesperson for the French association of LGBT police officers described Jugelé as "a simple man who loved his job, and he was really committed to the LGBT cause."

"He was aware of the risks of the job and the terrorist threat," said Mickaël Bucheron, "although we did not speak a lot about it."

Jugelé, 37, grew up in Romorantin-Lanthenay in central France and was in a civil union with Cardiles. 

He had been among the first responders when DAESH Islamic State terrorists attacked Paris' Bataclan theater in 2015, and was actually preparing to leave the Paris gendarmes to join the Judicial Police, which pursues suspects and serves search warrants, among other duties.

After his death, flags at police stations across France flew at half-mast, and President Francois Hollande made him a posthumous knight of the Legion d’Honneur.

The memorial event was attended by major French dignitaries including French President Hollande and candidates Marine Le Pen and Emmanuel Macron. Le Pen is the leader of the far-right National Front party, and has promised to repeal France’s same-sex marriage law.


Wednesday, April 26, 2017

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MARCUS AURELIUS


ON April 26th the Religion of Antinous joyously celebrates the birth of one of the wisest rulers in history, a man hand-picked by the Divine Hadrian personally to become Emperor of Rome.

Marcus Annius Verus was born on this day in the year 121 to a Spanish Roman family, related to Hadrian. From the very start, the young Marcus showed a deep interest in learning and particularly in philosophy.

The Stoic philosopher Epictetus had the most profound influence over him, and his truthful and pious nature gained Hadrian's attention and Hadrian is said to have called him "Verissimus", or most truthful, and to have taken an interest in the future of the young philosopher.

Marcus would have been 9 years old when Antinous died, and he is not believed to have been with the court in Egypt.

When Aelius Ceasar died shortly after being chosen Emperor in 138, it is believed that Marcus was Hadrian's next choice. However, the ailing and grieving emperor felt that the 17-year-old Marcus was too young.

So Hadrian decided to elect Antoninus Pius instead, requiring Antoninus to choose Marcus and the son of Lucius, called Lucius Verus, to be Antoninus's successors in turn.

This became known as the Dynasty of the Antonines, the last flowering of the glory that was Imperial Rome.

Hadrian believed that the old Antoninus would only rule for the few years needed to allow Marcus to mature. But instead, Antoninus remained in power far longer than Hadrian, and Marcus was 40 years old when he at last took power.

But the Empire that he inherited was succumbing to more and more trouble along its borders, as the Germanic hordes began their slow migration across the borders. The Philosopher-King Marcus was doomed to spend the majority of his reign leading the armies along the cold northern border.

He was successful in keeping the barbarians outside the Empire, and in maintaining the peace and prosperity in the heart of Rome that had been left to him by Hadrian and Antoninus.


We celebrate the birthday of Imperator Caesar Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

A MILLION BRITISH MEN
ARE DESCENDANTS OF THE ROMANS



A million British men may be directly descended from the Roman legions which came, saw and conquered England and Wales almost two thousand years ago, a DNA study suggests.

The Romans departed abruptly in the early 5th Century AD, leaving behind relics of their rule including Hadrian's Wall along with a host of towns, roads and encampments.


The painting above is entitled "The Last Roman Leaves Britain" by John Everett Millais.

But, according to a report in THE TELEGRAPH, perhaps the most enduring sign of their legacy is in British genes, with an estimated million British men descending from the invading forces.

A genetic study of 5,000 people found that up to four million men in England and Wales carry distinctive genetic signatures which are most commonly found, and likely have their origin, in Italy, the newspaper report said.

Although it is impossible to prove whether any individual person's genes were introduced during the Roman occupation of Britain, and not before or after, researchers estimate that the influx of tens of thousands soldiers was responsible for at least a quarter of the total.

Following their arrival in 43 AD Romans are thought to have accounted for between four and eight per cent of all men in Britain – a much greater proportion than at any other point in history.

 The DNA markers are much rarer in Ireland, where there was no Roman invasion, and Scotland where the armies' presence was limited to a brief occupation of some southern regions.

Researchers examined DNA from the Y chromosome, which is only passed on by men, and identified five rare patterns which are unusually common among English, Welsh and particularly Italian men.


The figures only represent men whose Roman descent has been passed down from father to son, so the true total must be even higher, the newspaper report added.

Monday, April 24, 2017

MODERN SCULPTURE 'RUINS' GREETED
2.5 MILLION TOURISTS IN POMPEII RUINS



MORE than 2.5 million people saw this amazing exhibition of modern sculptural "ruins" against the backdrop of the ancient ruins of Pompeii.

The exhibition of over-size colossal bronzes by Polish artist Igor Mitoraj closes 1 Many 2017 after a 12-month run.

The traveling exhibition arrived in Pompeii from a widely hyped stints in the Valley of the Temples in Agrigento and the Trajan's Forum in Rome.

In all, 28 bronze sculptures were placed in strategic areas of Pompeii, including the Temple of Isis, the Forum, the Stabian Baths and the portico of the amphitheater.

Mitoraj chose the location of each sculpture in Pompeii before his death three years ago.

The elegant sculptures, inspired iconology based on Classical myths and legends, exquisitely complemented the ancient ruins of ancient Pompeii. A perfect marriage between modern and ancient culture.









Sunday, April 23, 2017

ANTINOUS FILM TIP:
'SOMETHING LIKE SUMMER'



THE reviews are in on one of the most exciting new gay films making the festival circuit.

SOMETHING LIKE SUMMER traces the tumultuous relationship of Ben and Tim, secret high school sweethearts who grow over the years into both adulthood enemies and complicated friends.

The film is based on the Lambda Award-winning novel by Jay Bell.

Producer J. T. TEPNAPA tells us that the film already thrilled audiences in February at the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Film Festival in Australia during the preview season.

The North American premiere was at the QFLIX film fest in Philadelphia in March.

This weekend the film was screened at Florida's MiFo Film Fest. Miami's Wire Magazine listed the movie as one of the "Best of the Festival."

The Miami reviews are in:

"The very talented and completely charming cast make this adaptation of Jay Bell's best selling 'young adult' movie compelling enough to engage the hearts and minds also of a 'not-so-young' audience, too," wrote queerguru editor Roger Walker-Dack.

Walker-Dack especially noted the performances of Grant Davis (Ben Bentley) and Ajiona Alexus (Fox's Empire, Netflix's 13 Reasons Why):

"Davis in particular really shines as the confused love-lost Ben and shows too that he is a very accomplished singer," he wrote, "as does Ajiona Alexus who plays his best girl pal Allison."

The reviewer concluded: "Young love is after all something to sing and dance about, with the synergy and passion that one has at that age, totally convinced that this is the first time that anyone anywhere has experienced such joy, and such heartache, too. If only."

Watch for this wonderful film when it comes to a film festival or art cinema near you:


Saturday, April 22, 2017

ON EARTH DAY 2017
ANTINOUS IS IN YOU HERE AND NOW



FOR us in the Northern Hemisphere it is Spring. For us in the Southern Hemisphere it is Autumn. For Antinous, all moments in time are NOW, all locations in space are HERE ... in your spiritual heart ... HOMOTHEOSIS ... Gay-Man-Godliness-Becoming-the-Same.

Dia da Terra. Para nós no hemisfério norte é Primavera. Para nós no Hemisfério Sul é de Outono. Para Antinous, todos os momentos no tempo é agora, todos os locais no espaço são AQUI ... em seu coração espiritual ... HOMOTHEOSIS ... Homem-Deus-Gay-tornou-se o mesmo que-Homem-Deus-Gay.

Día de la Tierra para nosotros en el hemisferio norte es la primavera . Para nosotros en el hemisferio sur es otoño . Para Antinoo , todos los momentos del tiempo están ahora , todos los lugares en el espacio está aquí ... en su corazón espiritual ... HOMOTHEOSIS ... Gay-Hombre-Dios-Ser-el-mismo-como-Gay-Hombre-Dios .

Friday, April 21, 2017

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, ROMA!
By Flamen Antinoalis Antonius Subia





MATER ROMA,
 
Thank you for saving me from perdition,
Thank you for giving my life meaning and purpose again
Today you have given me so much joy and mystery
I don't even know what to say sometimes
About the way you work your magic over my life
But I feel your power all around me.
You are with me where ever I go,
Where ever I am...You Are There.
Wolf Mother! 
My Latin forefathers flow through my blood
My allegiance to you will never die
I give my life, my strength, my courage to defend you
...and to restore your glory.
Happy Birthday Roma!

~ANTONIUS SUBIA

WE CELEBRATE THE FOUNDING
OF THE ETERNAL CITY OF ROME


ON April 21, as the Sun moves into the Sign of Taurus the Bull, we celebrate the ancient festival of THE EROTICON.

On this day we honor the great God of Love, Eros-Cupid, in his guise as Antinous-Phanes, the "radiant being of light who emerges from the egg of night". 


We also honor the Great God Priapus the divine phallus, the column of male virility, the bestower of the fertility of fields, vineyards, orchards and gardens. Priapus is the axis of the cosmos.

On this date we also commemorate the founding of the city of Rome, Natalis Urbis, personified by the Romans as Our Lady Roma. We celebrate the consecration of her sacred border, and of her birth, and eternal life, and remember that we are her children.

And also on this date we remember the Sacred Bear Hunt. While in Mysia in Asia Minor, in the year 129, the court engaged in a Bear Hunt near the city which Hadrian had founded (on an earlier trip) called Hadrianotherae, "Hadrian's hunting ground". It is the modern-day city of Balikesir in a lovely area of wooded forests and lakes in northwestern Turkey.

Hadrian loved animals and is known to have built tombs for his dogs and horses (according to Royston Lambert) and he loved to hunt. The Bear is the sacred animal of Diana-Artemis, and symbolizes the solitary, forest-roaming character of the Virgin Huntress. In the ferocity of the bear lies the secret of Diana's power, against which Hadrian and Antinous pitted themselves, as shown on the tondo from the Arch of Constantine.

The grand themes of the Eroticon are Love and Sex and Ferocious Anger. The Beast is always lurking inside of us. The mystery teaching surrounding the Bear Hunt involves getting to know your animal instincts -- sex and lust and rage -- and to become one with them and to turn them into powerful allies for your spiritual development.

Flamen Antinoalis Antonius Subia has expressed this mystical mystery meaning as follows:

"Antinous, under Hadrian's guidance, was an accomplished hunter, indeed it is perhaps his natural skill and bravery in the chase that elevated him to the absolute love and adoration of Hadrian. The Emperor was madly in love with hunters, and Antinous was one of the best. Antinous had perhaps been silently stalking and hunting the Emperor's favor for quite some time, and now, in Asia, in the sacred Hunting Grounds of Hadrian, Antinous closed in on the heart of his prey and captured the Emperor completely. In our commemoration of the Sacred Bear Hunt we recognize that Artemis and Antinous are twin deities, and we seek the Dianic-Artemis-Bear within ourselves."

Thursday, April 20, 2017

ROME'S PANTHEON BECOMES A SUNDIAL
FOR THE FOUNDING OF THE CITY OF ROME



THE crowds of tourists at Hadrian's Pantheon witness a spectacular light show on April 21, 2,770th anniversary of the founding of Rome, when a ray of sunlight illuminated the temple portals.

The phenomenon, similar to one on the March Equinox, is one of the mysteries that have always surrounded what lies behind the unusual design of the Pantheon, the giant temple in the heart of Rome that was built by the Emperor Hadrian.

Now experts have come up with an intriguing theory – that the temple acted as a colossal sun dial, with a beam of light illuminating its enormous entrance at the precise moment that the emperor entered the building on the anniversary of the founding of the city of Rome each April 21.

Constructed on Hadrian's orders and completed in 128 AD, the Pantheon's hemispherical dome is punctured by a 30 foot-wide circular hole known as the 'oculus'.

It provides the interior of the building with its only source of natural light and allows in rain and – on rare occasions – snow.

Giulio Magli, a historian of ancient architecture from Milan Polytechnic, Italy, and Robert Hannah, a classics scholar from the University of Otago in New Zealand, have discovered that at precisely midday during the March equinox, a circular shaft of light shines through the oculus and illuminates the Pantheon's imposing entrance.

A similar effect is seen on April 21, which the Romans celebrated as the founding date of their city, when at midday the sun beam strikes a metal grille above the doorway, flooding the colonnaded courtyard outside with light.

The dramatic displays would have been seen by the Romans as elevating an emperor into the realm of the gods – a cosmological affirmation of his divine power as he entered the building, which was used as an audience hall as well as a place of worship.

He was in effect being "invited" by the sun to enter the Pantheon, which as its name suggests was dedicated to the most important deities of the Roman world.

"The emperor would have been illuminated as if by film studio lights," said Professor Magli.

"The Romans believed the relationship between the emperor and the heavens was at its closest during the equinoxes. It would have been a glorification of the power of the emperor, and of Rome itself." 

The sun had a special significance for the Romans, as it did for the ancient Egyptians.

The god Apollo was associated with the sun, and the emperor Nero was depicted as the Greek sun god Helios in a giant statue called the Colossus, which gave its name to the Colosseum.

One of antiquity's most remarkable examples of engineering, the Pantheon's fine state of preservation is thanks to the fact that it was converted into a church in the seventh century, when it was presented to the Pope by the Byzantine Emperor Phocas.

It retains its original bronze doors and marble columns, some of which were quarried in the Egyptian desert and transported by the ship down the Nile and across the Mediterranean to Rome at huge expense.

SCIENCE PROVES FREDDIE MERCURY'S
VOICE TRULY WAS ONE-OF-A-KIND


HE died 25 years ago, but a team of international researchers are paying homage to saint of Antinous FREDDIE MERCURY with a new study in that reveals exactly how singular a musical talent he was.

Urban legend maintains Mercury had a four-octave singing range, and while the team couldn’t prove that, they did discover some interesting facts. Like he was actually more of a baritone (the average frequency Mercury at spoke was 117.3 Hz.) despite usually being billed as a tenor.

Without Mercury to provide live samples, scientists brought in vocal coach Daniel Zangger-Borch to imitate Mercury’s voice. Filming Zangger-Borch’s vocal chords at 4,000 frames per second, the team got a better understanding of how Mercury probably sang.

They discovered he utilized subharmonics, which are generated when the ventricular folds in your throat vibrate along the vocal folds. Such a feat is usually only associated with Tuvan throat singers.

The study, printed in Logopedics Phoniatrics Vocology, also reveals that Mercury’s vocal chords moved faster than other people’s: A typical vibrato will fluctuate between 5.4 Hz and 6.9 Hz. Mercury’s was 7.04 Hz, beyond even that acclaimed opera singer Luciano Pavarotti.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

JOHN ADDINGTON SYMONDS
SAINT OF ANTINOUS THE GAY GOD


THE Religion of Antinous honors St. John Addington Symonds, the English poet and literary scholar who shocked Victorian sensibilities by openly promoting the cause of same-sex love.

John Addington Symonds was born on 5 October 1840, to a wealthy middle-class family in Bristol England. His father was a liberally minded doctor with connections and close friendships with many of the most illustrious and forwards minds of the time.

It was this environment of Victorian middle-class sexual repression that caused John Addington Symonds to blossom into one of the first and most prolific proponents for the cause of love between men.

While teenager in school, he was awakened by Plato to the awareness of love between boys among his schoolmates and almost immediately and unhesitatingly came out of the closet, even to his father, who was initially dismayed but ultimately supportive.

From then on, Symonds devoted his entire life to the study of homosexuality through art and history. He was the most pronounced defender of the ancient and glorious legacy of love between men, and a champion of social change.

He was a deep admirer of Walt Whitman, and later worked closely with Edward Carpenter, and Dr. Magnus Hirschfeld, co-founding the British Institute for Sexual Science, which advocated a methodical study to overturn the laws against homosexual love.

For his life-long work and devotion, and for his early recognition and exultation of his sexuality, John Addington Symonds is a canonized Saint of the Religion of Antinous.


The most sacred of his many contributions to the enlightenment of our freedom are the words that he wrote about Antinous, whose beauty he glorified with poetry and elegance in the language of a lover of the homosexual, erotic beauty of Our God. John Addington Symonds died in Rome on the 19th of April 1893.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

EGYPT TOMB FIND RAISES HOPES
FOR LOST TOMB OF ANTINOUS



EGYPTIAN archaeologists have unearthed several mummies, colourful wooden sarcophagi and more than 1,000 funerary statues in a 3,500-year-old tomb near the city of Luxor hailed as an "important discovery".

The discovery proves once again that secrets still lie under the sands of Egypt … raising hopes that one day the Lost Tomb of Antinous might be found.

"There are 10 coffins and eight mummies. The excavation is ongoing," Mostafa Waziri, the head of the archeological mission, told AFP.

The 18th Dynasty tomb, discovered in the Draa Abul Nagaa necropolis near the famed Valley of the Kings, belonged to a nobleman named Userhat who worked as the city judge, the ministry said in a Tuesday statement.

It was opened to add more mummies during the 21st Dynasty, about 3,000 years ago, to protect them during a period when tomb-robbing was common, said Waziri, the head of the archaeological mission, at the site.

"It was a surprise how much was being displayed inside" the tomb, Antiquities Minister Khaled el-Enany told reporters outside the tomb.

"We found a large number of Ushabti (small carved figurines), more than 1,000 of them," Enany said.

"This is an important discovery," he said.

Ushabti figurines were often placed with the deceased in ancient Egyptian tombs to help with responsibilities in the afterlife.

Inside the tomb, archaeologists wearing white masks and latex gloves inspected the sarcophagi, which were covered with intricate drawings in red, blue, black, green, and yellow, and featured the carved faces of the dead.

The coffins were mainly well-preserved, though some had deteriorated and broken over the years.

Archeologists were also examining a mummy wrapped in linen which was inside one of the coffins.

White, orange, green, and patterned pots were also found in the tombs.

"It is a T-shaped tomb (which) consists of an open court leading into a rectangular hall, a corridor and an inner chamber," the ministry said in a statement.

A nine-metre shaft inside the tomb held the Ushabti figurines, as well as "wooden masks and a handle of a sarcophagus lid," the ministry said.

Another room in the tomb was also discovered, though it has not yet been completely excavated, it said.


Nevine el-Aref, the spokeswoman for the antiquities ministry, said "there is evidence and traces that new mummies could be discovered in the future."

PALATIAL ROMAN VILLA MAY HAVE BEEN
HADRIAN'S HOME IN BRITANNIA




ONE of the largest Roman villas ever discovered in Britain may have been built to accommodate Emperor Hadrian … and Antinous … on trips to oversee construction of Hadrian's Wall.

The ruins of the sprawling villa have been found buried under a home in Wiltshire. Rug designer Luke Irwin was laying an electricity cable in a barn on his property last year when he struck upon a mosaic under the ground.

"I sent a photograph to the council and within 24 hours they were here with archaeologists to see what we'd found," he said.

Experts from Historic England and Salisbury Museum began excavation of the site and realised the mosaic formed part of the floor of a much larger Roman building.

A grand villa to be precise, which was built sometime between the time of Hadrian and 220 AD and could have been home to a visiting Roman emperor.

Archaeologists described it as the most significant discovery of its kind in more than a decade.

Archaeologists described it as the most significant discovery of its kind in more than a decade.

Dr David Roberts, an archaeologist from Historic England, helped work on the excavation.

He said: "The site has not been touched since its collapse 1,400 years ago and so it's of extreme importance.

"The large scale and complexity of the site present a unique opportunity to understand Roman and post-Roman Britain."

From their research, archaeologists believe the villa had three-storey structures similar to those found at another Roman villa in Chedworth, Gloucester.

This means there is reason to believe the villa belonged to a family of extraordinary wealth and importance.

Experts also found hundreds of discarded oyster shells, a perfectly preserved Roman well and the stone coffin of a Roman child.

Amazingly, the coffin had gone unnoticed and held flowers until it was identified.

"It's unbelievable," Mr Irwin said. "The thought of the footsteps we are following in. I have always been fascinated by history ever since I went to Pompeii as a child.

"But to find it 20 yards from your own front door - and then the 20 billion to one shot that you design luxury rugs for the Roman aristocrats of today. It's mind blowing."

The site in Warminster has now been scheduled to protect and preserve it, but for the time being there will be no more research until archaeologists get more funding and technology improves.

Roman Emperors in Britain:

:: Rome's most famous ruler, though not technically an emperor, Julius Caesar made two expeditions to Britain, in 55 and 56BC, but failed to gain much of a foothold. His adventures are recounted in varying levels of seriousness in his own De Bello Gallico and in comic book classic Asterix In Britain.

:: Hadrian (117-138) visited Britain in response to a major rebellion, ordering the building of Hadrian's Wall, "to separate Romans from barbarians".  Much of the wall remains intact some 2,000 years later.

:: Septimius Severus (193-211) seized power in the bloody "Year of the Five Emperors" (think a particularly cast-depleting episode of Game Of Thrones). After a series of victories over Rome's enemies and his own rivals, he got bogged down fighting the Caledonians in what is now Scotland, and died in York.

:: Septimius' son Caracalla (211-217) was with him in York when he died. One of Rome's cruellest emperors, Caracalla got round the problem of having to share power with his brother Geta by simply having him murdered in front of their mother. He was himself assassinated a few years later while relieving himself by the road in Turkey.

 :: Constantine The Great (306-337) was proclaimed emperor in York after his father Constantius died there. He went on to earn his moniker by uniting the empire, founding Constantinople (now Istanbul) and adopting Christianity as the official religion of the Roman empire. A statue of Constantine now stands outside York Minster.

Monday, April 17, 2017

SAINT SOR JUANA INÉS DE LA CRUZ


ON April 17th the Religion of Antinous honors Saint Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, 17th Century Mexican nun, scholar, poet, scientist, playwright, musician and lesbian.

She was exceptional not only for her intelligence and beauty, but also because she wrote literature centered on intellectual and sexual freedom.

In the poem "Redondillas" she defends a woman's right to be respected as a human being. "Hombres necios" (Stubborn men) criticizes the sexism of the society of her time, and pokes fun at men who publicly condemn prostitutes, among other things, but privately hire them.

She also has a philosophical approach to the relative immorality of prostitution. This was exemplified when she posed the question, "Who sins more, she who sins for pay or he who pays for sin?"

In the romantic comedy entitled "Los empeños de una casa" about a brother and a sister entangled in a web of love, she writes using two of her most prominent themes, love and jealousy.

She did not moralize, but rather, in the spirit of her lifetime interests, inquired of how these deeply emotional matters shaped and carved a woman's pursuit of liberty, knowledge, education and freedom to live her life in self-sovereignty.

Her revolutionary writings brought down upon her the ire of the Roman Catholic Church at the end of the 17th Century. She was ordered to tone down the sexuality of her writings. She did not.

However, powerful representatives from the Spanish court were her mentors and she was widely read in Spain, being called "The Tenth Muse". She was lauded as the most prominent poet of the post-conquest American Continent. Her work was printed by the first printing press of the American Continent in Mexico City.

She is believed to have penned 4,000 works, but only a few have survived. They were rescued by the Spanish Viceroy's wife, who was rumored to be her female lover. In April 1695, after ministering to the other sisters struck down by a rampant plague, she is said to have died at four in the morning on April 17th.


For her love of learning and her devotion to the beauty of sexuality and for her courage to write about controversial things in the face of the Spanish Inquisition, we honor Saint Sor Juana as a Prophet of Homoeros.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

PAGAN JOURNALIST MARGOT ADLER
IS A SAINT OF ANTINOUS


WE honor Margot Adler as a Saint of Antinous the Gay God.

She was a pioneering modern pagan and well-respected all-round journalist who enabled millions of listeners on NPR radio in North America to get a balanced and informed view of paganism. 

She reported on news and current affairs from New York City ... most notably the 9/11 tragedy ... and her listeners respected her religious beliefs were did not make her "weird" or "demonic."

Margot Adler authored DRAWING DOWN THE MOON, a 1979 book about Neopaganism which was revised in 2006 to include our own modern Religion of Antinous. 

The book is considered a watershed in American Neopagan circles, as it provided the first comprehensive look at modern nature-based religions in the US.

For many years it was the only introductory work about the American Neopagan communities. And it mentions Antinous ... and our new religion!

Saturday, April 15, 2017

JEAN GENET ALWAYS WANTED TO BE A SAINT
HE IS A SAINT OF ANTINOUS


ON April 15th the Religion of Antinous remembers Jean Genet as a Saint of Antinous.

Saint Jean Genet was one of the first and most modern gay poets, whose elegance and sordid love for the street life was unprecedented, and has never been matched.

Among his most fervent desires, expressed from the very beginning was that he should one day be elevated to Sainthood.


We of the Religion of Antinous, fully and faithfully, take faith in the spirit of Saint Jean Genet, through whom the eternal voice of Antinous spoke with the most voluptuousness and vain-glory.

Saint Jean Genet died on this day in Paris in1986.

Friday, April 14, 2017

KENNETH WEISHUHN
SAINT OF ANTINOUS


WE honor Kenneth Weishuhn as a blessed Saint of Antinous because he killed himself at age 14 after bullies taunted him relentlessly for being gay.

April 14th, 2012, Kenneth James Weishuhn, of Primghar, Iowa, succumbed to the bullying he'd been receiving since coming out as a gay teen only a few short months earlier.  

He was a very happy young man.  Handsome and full of life.  He was loving to others.  More than that, he was loved by his friends and families.

Unfortunately, coming out of the closet cost him his young life.  The bullying was relentless and severe to the point where he couldn't take it any longer.

Two of Kenneth's friends, Kristi and Brandi, made a YOUTUBE VIDEO TRIBUTE to their gone-too-soon friend.


Antinous is the God of teens who suffer for being gay. Kenneth Weishuhn is in the embrace of Antinous the Gay God. 

SIR JOHN GIELGUD
SAINT OF ANTINOUS


ON April 14th the Religion of Antinous honors one of our most blessed thespian saints and martyrs, St. John Gielgud, who was born on this day in 1904.

The most terrible moment in John Gielgud's life -- on which he maintained a public silence for 50 years -- was the subject of a critically acclaimed play in the London West End.

The play, entitled "Plague Over England", was about the scandal which swept across Britain in 1953 when John Gielgud was arrested by an undercover policeman in a public toilet in London.

But the 2008 play was concerned with much more than Gielgud's arrest in on the charge of "importuning for immoral purposes". The play showed the plight of gay men in the 1950s Cold War atmosphere when gays were associated with Communist espionage. 

Its characters include the producer who nearly ended his career, the virulently anti-homosexual Lord Chief Justice Rayner Goddard, an American fleeing his own country's anti-Communist paranoia, and a doctor who claims to "cure" same-sex attraction with "Clockwork Orange"-style electric shock therapy.

Homosexuals had long been feared and hated in England as men who, it was believed, preyed on the innocent young, and were thus unfit to lead normal, happy lives. Until 1967, they risked prosecution for what the law called "acts of gross indecency between male persons", even in private, and could be arrested for merely showing -- in a police spy's opinion -- an intent to commit them.

Police throughout England were alert for any hints of homosexual behaviour. Just before Gielgud was arrested, two prominent high-class gay men had been uncovered as KGB spies, resulting in a further crackdown on all gay activities. The officer who arrested Gielgud was part of a Metropolitan Police squad established in 1930 that regularly lurked in central London toilets.


The year in which Gielgud came to grief in a Chelsea public convenience was a particularly dangerous one for homosexuals, as the increased frankness of the period allowed politicians, the police, and the press to profit by inflaming public hysteria, warning that a "plague" or "epidemic" of sodomy and Communism was sweeping the land.

The climate of fear was chilling to gay men who paid even the slightest attention to the news.

Gielgud, however, was, in his own words a "silly gubbins" who took no notice of anything outside of acting. On October 21, following the rehearsal for the play "A Day By the Sea", this supremely unworldly man, then 49, had a few drinks at a party and then visited a public lavatory popular with "cottagers" -- English gay slang for men who cruise toilets.

Arrested, and aware that he should give a false identity, he said he was a clerk called Arthur (his real name) Gielgud. The next day he  appeared before a magistrate who did not know who he was, fined him 10 pounds, and ordered him, with the disdain and sexual ignorance of the period, to "see your doctor the moment you leave this court".

Unfortunately, a better-informed Evening Standard reporter was there, too. When that afternoon's paper hit the streets, he was on the front page.

You can imagine the shame and the terror with which Gielgud turned up at rehearsal (he had considered suicide) for the role of a bachelor diplomat whose mother worries that he is lonely and unloved.

But the company, led by his co-star, Dame Sybil Thorndike, in fact welcomed him with open arms. "Oh, John," she said, in one of the most magnificent double entendres of all time, "you HAVE been a silly bugger!"


The producer of "A Day By the Sea", however, the immensely powerful Binkie Beaumont, saw the newspaper articles and the hate mail, and worried that the public would stay away. 

Yet his thoughts of firing the star were thwarted by Gielgud's brother, Val, who applied a little judicious blackmail about Binkie's very own private life.

Everyone was nervous that the audience might react with silence or even boos.


But as the curtain came down he was cheered to the rafters.

Gielgud was known for having a penchant for anonymous bathroom sex -- It's one of the reasons his knighthood (just a few months before the arrest) was postponed for years. He even had a "cruising cap" for such forays, an attempt to disguise himself so as to avert detection by fans who might recognize him.

The arrest had important consequences, and not only for Gielgud, who was told by the British embassy in Washington to forget about a planned American production of "The Tempest". because he might prove "an embarrassment".

Afterwards, the floodgates opened as the public was confronted by the disturbing fact that an extremely distinguished and beloved artist was one of the people they, in theory, despised. The fuss contributed to the Wolfenden Commission, set up the following year to study prostitution, taking on homosexuality as well. Its recommendations eventually led to decriminalisation in Britain.

While the affair broke Gielgud emotionally, he put himself back together in a way that made him better suited to a theatre in a world of greater change and upheaval.


For his talent and for his courage, the Religion of Antinous honors Saint John Gielgud as a Prophet of Homoeros.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

AS THE BEES MYSTERIOUSLY DISAPPEAR
WE REMEMBER ANTINOUS-ARISTAEUS


A mysterious malady seems to have expanded drastically, wiping out as many as half of the beehives needed to pollinate much of produce in North America and many other parts of the world.

This is a crisis of mythic proportions ... in the truest sense of the word. In Classical Mythology the world's bees all vanished ... and it took the daring plunge of a brave Hero to find the divine powers to bring the bees back ... and to save mankind.

It is all there in Virgil's version of the story of Aristaeus (Aristée/Arista
ios).

As this statue in the Louvre shows, Antinous was identified by the Ancients with Aristaeus ... they both descended into a river and emerged with godly powers.

Aristaeus was the son of Apollo and the river-nymph Cyrene and his assignment on the earthly plane was to teach mortal humans the art of farming and cultivating crops and tending livestock and keeping bees.

Honey was practically a form of ambrosia, or at least the nearest thing to ambrosia that mortal men had. It was the job of Aristaios to teach men how to cunningly harvest honey without being stung.

But Aristaeus had inadvertently caused the death of Eurydice by causing her to tread upon a venomous serpent. Her death and Orpheus's attempt to bring her back to the earthly plane were the origins of the Orphic Mysteries.

Shortly after Eurydice died, the bees which Aristaeus had been nurturing all began dying of a unexplainable cause. Nothing he could do seemed to prevent them from dying and soon they were all gone and humans were deprived of honey, beeswax, mead and the many other products which bees provide to man, not to mention the fact that, without bees, there was nobody to pollinate plants. The situation was dire.

Here's what Bulfinch writes, quoting Virgil:

"Aristæus, who first taught the management of bees, was the son of the water-nymph Cyrene. His bees had perished, and he resorted for aid to his mother. He stood at the river side and thus addressed her: 'O mother, the pride of my life is taken from me! I have lost my precious bees. My care and skill have availed me nothing, and you my mother have not warded off from me the blow of misfortune.'

"His mother heard these complaints as she sat in her palace at the bottom of the river, with her attendant nymphs around her. They were engaged in female occupations, spinning and weaving, while one told stories to amuse the rest. The sad voice of Aristæus interrupting their occupation, one of them put her head above the water and seeing him, returned and gave information to his mother, who ordered that he should be brought into her presence.

"The river at her command opened itself and let him pass in, while it stood curled like a mountain on either side. He descended to the region where the fountains of the great rivers lie; he saw the enormous receptacles of waters and was almost deafened with the roar, while he surveyed them hurrying off in various directions to water the face of the earth.

"Arriving at his mother’s apartment, he was hospitably received by Cyrene and her nymphs, who spread their table with the richest dainties. They first poured out libations to Neptune, then regaled themselves with the feast, and after that Cyrene thus addressed him: 'There is an old prophet named Proteus, who dwells in the sea and is a favorite of Neptune, whose herd of sea-calves he pastures. We nymphs hold him in great respect, for he is a learned sage and knows all things, past, present, and to come. He can tell you, my son, the cause of the mortality among your bees, and how you may remedy it.'"

The story goes on to say a river nymph escorted Aristaeus to the cave of Proteus where he subdued the cantankerous old prophet (who was a shape-shifter and tried unsuccessfully to elude Aristaeus by changing form). Aristaeus told him of his plight and wanted to know the cause of this misfortune and how to remedy it. Bulfinch writes:

"At these words the prophet, fixing on him his gray eyes with a piercing look, thus spoke: 'You receive the merited reward of your deeds, by which Eurydice met her death, for in flying from you she trod upon a serpent, of whose bite she died. To avenge her death, the nymphs, her companions, have sent this destruction to your bees. You have to appease their anger, and thus it must be done: Select four bulls, of perfect form and size, and four cows of equal beauty, build four altars to the nymphs, and sacrifice the animals, leaving their carcasses in the leafy grove. To Orpheus and Eurydice you shall pay such funeral honors as may allay their resentment. Returning after nine days, you will examine the bodies of the cattle slain and see what will befall.'

"Aristæus faithfully obeyed these directions. He sacrificed the cattle, he left their bodies in the grove, he offered funeral honors to the shades of Orpheus and Eurydice; then returning on the ninth day he examined the bodies of the animals, and, wonderful to relate! a swarm of bees had taken possession of one of the carcasses and were pursuing their labors there as in a hive."

So there we have it! Even the most illiterate and ignorant peasant would know the story of Aristaeus and the bees and the plunge into the river to unravel a Sacred Mystery. Aristaeus survived the plunge and emerged with Secret Knowledge which was of a great service to mankind.

For without bees to pollinate orchards and crops, mankind can scarcely survive ... a fact which has come home to haunt us today as bee populations dwindle worldwide and food riots rage in developing countries.

Ancient peoples, even those who could not read or write, could look at the statue of Antinous-Aristaeus and immediately see the Sacred Symbolism ... Like Aristaios, Antinous is a god who took the plunge into a river and who emerged with knowledge of Sacred Mysteries.


Wearing a sun hat, carrying a farm tool and holding an olive sprig, Antinous-Aristaeus symbolizes the union of sunshine and water (Apollo/Cyrene) combined with ingenuity and hard work and the ability to dive into the spiritual depths ... defying death ... and to emerge with a miracle which benefits all humankind.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

NOW THERE IS AN OBELISK OF ANTINOUS
ON THE NORTH AMERICAN CONTINENT




YOU all know of the ANTINOUS OBELISK in Rome ... now there is an Antinous Obelisk in North America.

On Monday, April 11, 2017, a cenotaph obelisk inscribed with Antinous' name and dates was erected by an Antinous adherent in the Congressional Cemetery in Washington DC. 

It is thought to be the only cemetery with a LGBT section. 

Above is a picture of the grave of Leonard Matlovich under the blooming cherry tree. If you should visit Leonard's grave and turn around, directly behind you you will see the obelisk in the second picture. 

Take the short walk to the obelisk and you will see the name of Antinous and his dates inscribed on the fifth niche down from the top. 

The Antinous worshiper's name, James Crawford, is on the plate as well as that of Henry Moses III, a saint of Antinous, whose urn is within the niche. 

The names of two other gay men immortalized on this cenotaph are covered over out of respect for their wishes. 

Antinous is now inscribed on an obelisk on the North American continent. 

The landscaping has not been completed because the installation just occurred yesterday. 

If you are ever in Washington, DC, and intend to visit the very historic and interesting Congressional Cemetery, you might want to stop by and give a remembrance to our Antinous.