Sunday, July 12, 2020

MEDITATIONS ON THE HEART OF ANTINOUS
(NINTH INSTALLMENT)

By Priest Michaelus Isom



TODAY we are looking at part two on the Heart of Antinous as a SON.

9. Keep a sense of humor.

Laughter can always be a lifesaver — both to help you handle the stress of dealing with sometimes crotchety individuals and to help you bond. If you can laugh together with your parents, you’re doing okay.
I would imagine that Antinous and Hadrian had a many good laughs together. Imagine Hadrian watching Antinous perform some task and can’t just get it right Hadrian would have been ticked just watching. 
So, we will stop here for today. I hope I have given you some things to think about. Tomorrow we will be part two. 
10. Attend family gatherings and engage.

Of course, it was probably an obligation that Antinous attend that many functions with Hadrian. I don’t think here that Antinous was glued to Hadrian’s side that Antinous would be able to hold his own in conversation. 
11. Learn to make your own decisions.
Hadrian would have given Antinous some lead way in making decisions that affected his education, and training.

12. Be grateful.
Antinous would have known the position he was placed in was like no other. I am sure he thanked his Gods for all the time. And not only his Gods but the Emperor as well.

13. Be kind.
 There is strength in being gentle. Hadrian would have witness this with Antinous. Whether it was with animals or people. 
14. Give.

I believe that Antinous had the heart of a giver. The greatest gift Antinous gave was his life for Hadrian.
A selfish child will not win the respect of their parents; most people secretly hate those who are selfish or self-centered. Be a giving son — you should help, you should support, and you should try to help others succeed and achieve, but you should also expect respect in return.
15. Be cheerful.

I am sure that many times Antinous had to cheer Hadrian up due to the burden of running an empire. Antinous would have known the signs, looks, attitudes that Hadrian was displaying knowing the right time to cheer up the Emperor. 
16. Do not judge.

Hadrian would have made some major decisions that only he knows why he had to make them. Antinous was in a position not to judge Hadrian. 
Learn to love your parents ... and everyone else ... without judging them. I understand that everyone has their own perspectives on life based what they’ve learned, who they are and what they think the world is all about. So instead of thinking that you are smarter, better, wiser and more perfect than your parents, just love them without judgment.
17. Be a man of your word.

Antinous would have been a man of his word. 
Men who lie, exaggerate, cheat, steal or frequently go back on what they’ve promised, are not the type of guys who are respected by others. The most respected men are those who say what they mean instead of exaggerating, lying or pretending to like someone or something.  Respected men promise what they can deliver, and they then stick to that no matter what. As a man, the more you stick by what you promise, the more respected you will be.
18. Be the son that will make your parents proud.

The more of a man that you become, the more people will naturally begin to look up to you. You will be someone that people can lean on, a pillar of strength in this world. You will be someone who can be relied on to be yourself, to say what you really feel and mean and do what is right. Your parents will love you for this.

AVE ANTINOUS!
PRIEST MICHAELUS

Saturday, July 11, 2020

THE WELL OF CASTALIA —
HOW DELPHIC ANTINOUS
CAN TEACH YOU TO TAME PEGASUS


ON JULY 11th each year, the Religion of Antinous takes a moment to ponder the esoteric reflections in the Well of Castalia at Delphi — where Antinous took a sacred bath, and where he was initiated into the Delphi Mystery Teachings.

It is also where one of the most mysterious and inspiring statues of Antinous was found.

The Well of Castalia is a fresh-water spring that flows from Mount Parnassus at Dephi, the sanctuary of Apollo. 

The Castalian Spring is located about 500 yards/meters from the Apollo Sanctuary itself. Busloads of tourists are whisked through the ruins of Delphi, but few ever stray away from their groups to wander off over to the spring site, which makes it an even more secluded and magical and mysterious place. 

It really is like stepping into the scene pictured here — Tarot Trump XVII "The Star" — the trump card which was inspired by the Well of Castalia

The spring was created when Pegasus, the winged horse, struck his hoof against a rock at the base of Mount Parnassus and water gushed forth, creating a wellspring of divine inspiration for the gods of Olympus. 

The name Castalia is derived from a Nymph named Castalia, a daughter of the river Achelous, who, when pursued by Apollo, threw herself in the spring that took her name. It was the most holy spring at Delphi and was said to be the place where Apollo and the Muses bathed. 

Pilgrims washed in the sacred water before visiting the Pythoness at the Delphic Oracle. According to Euripides, washing one's hair was sufficient for the average visitor, but persons who had transgressed more seriously against the Gods (he mentions habitual murderers as an example) had to strip off and wash themselves completely in the purifying waters.

The ancients believed the name Pegasus came from an even more ancient word meaning "wellspring of magical inspiration" and it was said that Pegasus was drinking from the Castalian Pool when Bellerophontes (or in later versions Perseus) sneaked up on him to harness Pegasus to do battle against fearful monsters.

In the Delphic Mystery Teachings,  the initiates were called upon to harness the magical inspiration of Pegasus for their own quest against the inner-demons of darkness towards spiritual enlightenment.


It was also said that the water of Castalia possessed the gift of prophecy, and any man who drank there would derive prophetic vision. Castalia is also a metaphor for the Well of Knowledge, and was said to be the fountain from which wisdom and learning poured from the heart of Apollo.

We know that Hadrian and Antinous visited this spot and it seems certain that Antinous purified himself in these waters — or at least washed his luxuriant hair.

An exquisite statue of Antinous was discovered at Delphi. The forearms had been broken off, but the ancient priests had lovingly buried the statue standing upright — which was the way it was found in the 19th Century, incredibly intact except for the missing forearms.

Alas, Antinous would drown in the similarly magical waters of the River Nile only a few scant months after visiting Delphi, during what we call the imperial "Three-Year Peregrination" — the wondrous and fateful final three-year Eastern Empire travels of Hadrian and Antinous. 

Flamen Antinoalis Antonius Subia explains why this special day, July 11th, is venerated by us Antinoians:


"We venerate the wisdom-gushing Well of Castalia on this day, half a year distant from the Well of Juturna, and bathe in preparation for the transition of the Peregrination year. We pray to Castalia to sweeten our tongue, as Antinous once bathed there, exposing the pure beauty of his flesh to the cold, fresh-gushing pool that imparts inspiration of the mind. In reverence of the wisdom and poetic elegance  of Antinous, we bathe in our own Fountains of Castalia."

The imagery of this purifying plunge into the magically inspiring waters of the Castalian Well has been used throughout history — even adorning the walls of early Christian churches, as seen in the mosaic (above) found in Libya. 

The imagery lives vibrantly in the XVIIth Greater Trump in the Tarot as The Star.

Open your Mind and your Heart to the Mystery Teachings of Delphi. Permit yourself to be carried aloft upon the magical wings of Pegasus, whose name means "wellspring of magical inspiration". Become one with Antinous through the wonder of HOMOTHEOSIS and allow yourself to conquer your demons and to soar to glory amongst the stars.

Friday, July 10, 2020

THE DAY HADRIAN DIED


ON JULY 10th the Religion of Antinous commemorates the Apotheosis of Hadrian. After a prolonged illness, at Baiae, on the Bay of Naples, Hadrian died on July 10, 138. 

His ashes were placed in the mausoleum on the bank of the Tibur that is now called Castel Sant'Angelo.

After the death of the gentle Antinous, Hadrian became embittered and mistrustful, capricious and cruel. 

When Hadrian died, the Senate wished to condemn his memory for atrocities against them during his final years. 

But his successor, Antoninus Pius, persuaded them to declare Hadrian a God. 

A temple was built for him known as the Hadrianeum on the Campus Marius, the remains of which are now part of the Roman Stock Exchange.

Flamen Antinoalis Antonius Subia explains:

"Hadrian the God is venerated as the manifestation of Jupiter Optimus Maximus on Earth, the ruler and guiding force behind the Antonine Dynasty, the most sacred family of emperors, whose reign is the Golden Age of Rome, because of the peace and prosperity that it maintained, which was the result of the wisdom of Hadrian's far-sighted and divine plan stretching out over the world. We worship and adore Hadrian the God, Savior of the Cosmos."

Thursday, July 9, 2020

THE DAY HADRIAN WAS DECLARED
EMPEROR OF ROME



ON JULY 8th-9th we commemorate the Ascension and Consecration of Hadrian — when he became master of the world after years of worrying and waiting. Hadrian was declared Emperor by the Legions when Trajan died suddenly while campaigning in Parthia on August 8th, 117 ... and nearly a year later, on July 9th, 118 AD, he formally became Emperor of Rome. 

In this illustration, you see Hadrian entering the Roman Forum at the height of his power. Standing behind him in the chariot is Antinous saying: "Respice post te! Hominem te esse memento! Memento mori!": "Look behind you! Remember that you are a man! Remember that you'll die!"

On this day in 117 AD, however, Hadrian truly had been in fear of death. Hadrian had been on tenterhooks for years wondering whether Trajan would formally adopt him as his heir. 

If Trajan died without the issue of succession being settled, it could result in civil war — or at least in the assassination of Hadrian by some other ambitious man.

It is said that the Divine Empress Plotina forged the will of her husband and gave the throne to Hadrian, who had been her protégé and friend for years.

After assuming power, Hadrian first settled the conflict with the Persian King, signing a peace treaty that was to last through the whole of his reign. As Trajan's military representative in the provinces, he had seen how the empire was beginning to over-reach its resources. So he set about consolidating things in the East, lest his Empire become embroiled in the sort of chronic blood-letting that modern superpowers now seek to extricate themselves from in that same region.

It is also said that he wanted to let the political dust settle back in Rome before returning to a city where his critics were waiting. Many thought him unfit. Hadrian was Hispanic — literally so. He was born in the province of Hispania and spoke Latin with a provincial "Hispanic accent" which was the cause of much derision by high-born Patricians when he was sent to Rome as a boy to be educated. He never liked Rome and, throughout his reign, spent as little time there as possible.

Settling other matters in the East, Hadrian waited a full year before  returning to Rome, and on July 9th, 118, he entered the Holy City and was formally and ritually installed as Emperor by the Senate. He was then consecrated as Pontifex Maximus, highest priest of the Roman Religion, and head of all foreign cults.

He inherited from the warrior-king Trajan the largest empire that the western world had ever known — Rome at her greatest size and strength — and he wisely chose not to continue to expand the frontiers, but to turn instead to the development of the interior.


He visited every province, traveling more than any other emperor before or after, dedicating his power to art, literature, legal reform and the promotion of peace, prosperity, and the united religious consciousness of Roman citizenship after his beloved Athenian model.

Flamen Antinoalis Antonius Subia says the following about this Sacred Day in our Liturgical Calendar:

"On this day, Imperator Caesar Traianus Hadrianus Augustus was to assume responsibility as the spiritual leader of the Empire, Father of the Country with a vigor unparalleled by his predecessors, and was to be one of the foremost builders of cities, temples, and public structures world-wide. For his love of Antinous and the extraordinary gesture of deifying our god, we worship and venerate Hadrian as the founder of our faith and as our immortal father, the lover of Antinous."

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

MEDITATIONS ON THE HEART OF ANTINOUS
(EIGHTH INSTALLMENT)

By Priest Michaelus Isom



TODAY is the eighth installment on the Heart of Antinous. It will be broken down into two parts. 

Today we want to talk a little on The Heart of Antinous as a Son. Little is known of the origins of Antinous except that he was from the Bithynian city of Claudiopolis modern-day Bolu, Turkey.

In many ways I am sure Antinous possessed all these 18 traits. I see Antinous far more matured for his age. 18 traits one for each year that Antinous lived.  Here are the first 9. 

18 ways to be a better man … by being a good son:

1. Cherish the time you have with your parents.
The time you have with your parents is short and precious, so make the most of it. Spend as much time as you can with them. Make it quality, loving time — don’t let your mind drift away.
Thought far from home and his family. Antinous surely valued the time he spent with Hadrian. The quiet times when no one was around to the thrill of hunting or attending major functions Hadrian had to attend as Emperor. 
2. Talk to your parents.

Whether you are close to your parents or not, keeping them informed about your hopes and fears and how they can support you is imperative.  Don’t limit your conversations strictly to family memories, or gossip about family members, or your personal life. There’s a whole wide world out there — why not try talking about it.

Antinous and Hadrian spent many hours just talking. Hadrian wanted to hear what his young companion had to say and encouraged him to speak his mind. Like any young man Antinous had dreams, hopes and fears. 

3. Bond with your parents.

Find things that you have in common with your parents.  Just spending ‘quality time’ will mean more than you know.
Probably the thing that bonded Hadrian and Antinous more than anything was hunting. Hadrian loved the thrill of hunting even from as a young man, he was criticized for hunting too much. Not only hunting was a bond between Hadrian and Antinous but the pursuit of knowledge and the mysteries they both were initiated into. 

4. Listen to your parents.

If you listen to them and treat them with the respect they deserve, they will listen to you and treat you with respect that you desire. This gesture of respect is something that they will appreciate.
Even though teenagers can be stubborn and hardheaded Antinous I am sure listen to Hadrian and the sound advise he gave. 

5. Trust your parents.

You may not always like what your parents have to say or feel like they understand you, but they care for you and will usually do and say what they feel is in your best interest.
I am sure that Antinous learned lessons sometimes the hard way and Hadrian let him fail at times. Antinous trusted that if anything went wrong while chasing the Libyan lion that Hadrian would be there for him. 

6. Be loyal.

Always be true to your family and friends.
Antinous was fully committed to Hadrian and was loyal. Many in the Imperial Court would have tried to influence Antinous for their own gain but Antinous remained loyal to Hadrian.


7. Be helpful.

Learn to serve other people without expecting payment or reward.
Antinous would have been one to help where needed. The concern he must have felt for Hadrian when illness struck. 


8. Be courteous.

Be polite to everyone regardless of their age or position. Using good manners makes it easier for people to get along.
Being part of the Imperial Court Antinous had to be courteous to all kinds of people and I am sure even to the ones that he didn’t care for.  Everyone would be watching Antinous to see how he would act or react. Any misstep would have brought disfavor not only upon him but to Hadrian as well. 


9. Keep a sense of humor.

Laughter can always be a lifesaver ... both to help you handle the stress of dealing with sometimes crotchety individuals and to help you bond. If you can laugh together with your parents, you’re doing okay.
I would imagine that Antinous and Hadrian had a many good laughs together. Imagine Hadrian watching Antinous perform some task and can’t just get it right Hadrian would have been ticked just watching. 

So, we will stop here for today. I hope I have given you some things to think about. Tomorrow we will be part two. 

AVE ANTINOUS!
PRIEST MICHAELUS

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

MEDITATIONS ON THE HEART OF ANTINOUS
(SEVENTH INSTALLMENT)

By Priest Michaelus Isom


TODAY'S installment on The Heart of Antinous is Excitement.  

There are many synonyms that can be associated with excitement. Many times, throughout his life Antinous would have experienced pleasure which is a feeling of happiness, enjoyment, or satisfaction. 

No doubt Antinous experienced much happiness and enjoyment with Hadrian. 

I am sure the most was when they could be just the two of them alone. 

Perhaps just talking about a subject they both loved. Walking together on the beautiful grounds of Hadrian’s Villa. 

Next, we have excitement itself. With all the traveling Antinous did the pure excitement at seeing all the wonders each place has to offer. 

Then there is enthusiasm. Antinous would have been enthusiastic to try new experiences especially when it came to the different Mysteries that he and Hadrian went through. 

This enthusiasm could possibly have made Hadrian feel young again and who knows maybe Hadrian lived at times vicariously through Antinous.  

When I see the synonym anticipation which means a feeling of excitement about something enjoyable that is going to happen. I picture Antinous about to be initiated into the Eleusinian Mysteries. Or the feeling of hunting the Libyan lion. 

We can’t forget ecstasy a feeling of great happiness and pleasure, often sexual pleasure that he experienced with Hadrian. 

Lastly there is joie de vivre a feeling of pleasure and excitement that comes from enjoying life. 

AVE ANTINOUS!
PRIEST MICHAELUS

Monday, July 6, 2020

MEDITATIONS ON THE HEART OF ANTINOUS
(SIXTH INSTALLMENT)

By Priest Michaelus Isom


TODAY'S installment on the Heart of Antinous is STRENGTH. 

We are not talking about strength in the sense of able to lift heavy objects. 

What we are talking about is strong hearted. A person is strong hearted when they don’t give up, they fight for what they believe is right. 

They are not intimidated, and they let nothing get in their way. 

Another is someone who is confident and determined and is not easily influenced or worried by other people.

Antinous was in a unique position within the court of Hadrian.

Everyone in Court had their unique place from Senators to Generals who were always around the Emperor.

Accountants, Astrologers all the way down to the everyday workers who kept the Court moving. 

Antinous on the other hand was none of these. He could not be placed neatly into place as a plug into a hole. 

We know he was the beloved of Hadrian. He had the ear of the Emperor and for that many saw him as dangerous.

The daily intrigue within the Imperial Court had to be overwhelming. 

Through all of this Antinous was strong hearted. 

He only cared for and about the love of his life the Emperor Hadrian. He didn’t care at all what was going on in the Imperial Court their whispers and lies and because of this many rumors spread and people really hated Antinous for his unique position. 

So, Antinous never gave up. 

I am sure there were times that people tried to influence him for their personal gain but Antinous stood steadfast and true to his true love. He fought for what he believed in and the love that he and Hadrian shared.  

AVE ANTINOUS!
PRIEST MICHAELUS