Thursday, November 23, 2017

NEW STUDY SHEDS LIGHT ON BOYHOOD
IN ROMAN-ERA EGYPT NEAR ANTINOOPOLIS


IN Roman Egypt, 14-year-old boys were enrolled in a youth organization in order to learn to be good citizens, according to a new study into a field that has never properly been studied until now … boyhood in Roman-ruled Egypt.

The researchers from the University of Oslo and Britain's University of Newcastle, have unearthed papyrus documents from the 5th Century AD from OXYRHYNCHUS Egypt. 

(Image: Head of a 2nd Century AD Roman-era boy with Egyptian-style "Sidelock of Horus" in Oslo Museum of Cultural History)

The documents shed new light into boyhood in Egypt in the heyday of Antinoopolis, which was located only a short distance from Oxyrhynchus (also spelled Oxyrhynchos).

Only boys born to free-born citizens were entitled to be members of the town's youth organization, which was called a "gymnasium." These boys were the children of local Egyptians, Greeks and Romans. 

Their families would necessarily have been quite prosperous, and have had an income that placed them in the "12 drachma tax class." 

It is uncertain how large a proportion of the population would have qualified, probably somewhere between 10 and 25 per cent, says social historian and historian of ideas Ville Vuolanto.

Girls were not enrolled as members of the gymnasium, but are often mentioned in the administrative documents as being the boys' siblings. This may have had to do with family status or tax class. Both girls and women could own property, but in principle they had to have a male guardian.


For boys from well-off families of the free-born citizen class, the transition to adult life started with enrollment in the 'gymnasium'.

Other boys started working before reaching their teens, and might serve an apprenticeship of two to four years. 

(Illustration by Roger Payne)

The researchers have found about 20 apprenticeship contracts in Oxyrhynchus, most of them relating to the weaving industry since Oxyrhynchus was a major weaving center in Egypt. 

Males were not reckoned to be fully adults until they married in their early twenties.

Slave children could also become apprentices, and their contracts were of the same type as for the boys of free-born citizens. Slaves lived either with their owners or in the same house as their master, while free-born children generally lived with their parents.

But life was different for slave children nonetheless. Vuolanto says they have found documents to show that children as young as two were sold and separated from their parents.

(Image: Boys learning to write)

In one letter, a man encourages his brother to sell the youngest slave children, and some wine ... whereas his nephews should be spoiled. He writes "…I am sending you some melon seeds and two bundles of old clothes, which you can share with your children."

Little is known about the lives of children until they turn up in official documents, which is usually not before they are in their early teens. 

It seems that children began doing light work between the ages of seven and nine. Typically, they might have been set to work as goatherds or to collect wood or dry animal dung for fuel.

There were probably a good number of children who did not live with their biological parents, because the mortality rate was high.

"It's like putting together a jigsaw puzzle. By examining papyri, pottery fragments with writing on, toys and other objects, we are trying to form a picture of how children lived in Roman Egypt," explains Vuolanto.

The documents originate from Oxyrhynchus in Egypt, which was a large town of more than 25,000 inhabitants. 

(Image: Mummy-face portrait of a young boy from Antinoopolis)

Oxyrhynchus was so important that Antinous and Hadrian visited the city only a few days before Antinous died in the Nile in 130 AD.

The city had Egypt's most important weaving industry, and was also the Roman administrative centre for the area.

Researchers possess a great deal of documentation precisely from this area because archaeologists digging one hundred years ago discovered thousands of papyri in what had once been the city's rubbish dumps.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

WE PRAY TO ANTINOUS/DIANA
TO GUIDE US IN OUR HUNT BY MOONBEAMS


TONIGHT, November 22,  is one of the festivals of Diana goddess of the Moon and hunting. 

She is goddess of wild places and wild animals and the protector of young women, pregnant women and those giving birth. 

Diana is the twin sister of Apollo. 

As Antinous is often assimilated to Apollo, he therefore substitutes as the twin of Diana, though he can often be viewed as her male double, so that Antinous is Diana. 

Antinous and Diana are both hunters, and moon deities, and they are also gods of magic and darkness. 

Diana is often compared to Hecate, the supreme goddess of Theurgian magicians, who rose to prominence during the reign of Marcus Aurelius. 

Antinous therefore is the male equivalent of Hecate.

ANTONIUS SUBIA says: "We pray to Diana to guide us in our hunt and to illuminate our nights with the silver light of her sublime power. We recognize that the Moon of Diana is the Moon of Antinous."

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

SEE ANTINOUS IN A NEW LIGHT
AT CAMBRIDGE'S FITZWILLIAM MUSEUM



THE famous Lansdowne bust of Antinous as Dionysus can be seen in a new light … literally … during a new lighting instillation at the FITZWILLIAM MUSEUM in Cambridge, England.

The artist Hugo Dalton will be projecting his dramatic lightdrawings onto sculptures in the Greece and Rome Gallery.

His works will interact with the architecture of the surrounding gallery to create a series of immersive installations.

Dalton’s work has previously been shown at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, Today Art Museum in Beijing and he has created a stage set at Sadler’s Wells Theatre in Britain.

The lighting installation opened 21 November 2017 and runs through 14 January 2018. Admission is free of charge.

QUENTIN CRISP
SAINT OF ANTINOUS


ON November 21st the Religion of Antinous honors Saint Quentin Crisp, who died on this day in 1999. He was born on Christmas Day in 1908. 

He became a gay icon in the 1970s after publication of his memoir, The Naked Civil Servant, his true-life account of his defiant exhibitionism and longstanding refusal to conceal his homosexuality.

John Hurt helped to make Quentin Crisp a media star in the movie adaptation of The Naked Civil Servant in the 1970s. In a sequel 30 years later Hurt made him a screen legend, very much in keeping with the lifelong ambition of Quentin Crisp.

In the second film, An Englishman In New York, Hurt portrayed the elderly Quentin Crisp as the New York gay icon based in Manhattan's funky-gritty Lower East Side in the 1980s and '90s.


At an age when most people would retire to a nursing home, Quentin Crisp left his native England and moved to New York City, where he pursued a career as a bon vivant and raconteur.

Asked by a BBC interview if he intended to die in New York, Saint Quentin emphatically said: "Oh no, I didn't come to New York to die. I came to New York to LIVE."

Arriving in New York in his 70s, he lived in his accustomed artistic squalor in a Lower East Side walk-up with a view through a grimy window pane of the next door neighbor's grimy bedroom window.


Every bit the considerate Englishman, he turned off his bare-bulb light at 11 p.m. and sat in the dark, lest the neighbor complain the glare from the 60-watt bulb (through two filthy window panes) kept him awake.

Saint Quentin experienced a meteoric rise after his cunning agent launched him into a career as a raconteur in an off-Broadway one-man show and he became a movie reviewer for a Christopher Street magazine.

But he experienced a meteoric fall from grace when, during one of his frequent TV talk-show appearances, he flippantly remarked that AIDS was "just a fad" which would soon be out of fashion, and the gay community viciously turned on him. Quentin, who had never apologized for anything in his life (and was not about to start apologizing), was perplexed when he was dropped by his agent and editor until his eyes were opened when he got to know young artist Patrick Angus, who later died of AIDS.

But in a Hollywood happy ending, Quentin was rescued by performance artist Penny Arcade, who put him back on stage, and Christopher Street re-hired him, paving the way for a glorious comeback and reconciliation with the gay community when he was in his 90s. 


It is fitting that most people know Saint Quentin only through these two films. As might be expected, the best recommendation for the films comes from Quentin Crisp himself, who once famously said: "Any film, even the worst, is better than real life."

Monday, November 20, 2017

FINDS SUGGEST ROMANS USED CAMELS
EVEN IN ROMAN BRITAIN



DID Antinous ride a camel … in Roman Britain?

In a new blog post by Dr. Caitlin Green, the historian explores the prevalence of camels across the Roman Empire, based on a number of camel remains excavated in areas such as Spain, Italy, France, Germany, Austria, Hungary, Slovenia and the Balkans ... and possibly even in Britannia. 

As she notes, the remains are dated to between the 1st and 5th centuries CE, with many coming from the third century or later. 

Also, Dr. Green remarks on the variant use of different types of camels across the empire: 

"Recent surveys by both Pigière & Henrotay and Tomczyk indicate that, where identification is possible, the evidence points to dromedaries or Arabian camels being dominant in the western half of Roman Europe whilst Bactrian camels were mainly found in the east, although the split was not absolute … for example, a near-complete skeleton of a Bactrian camel is known from a Roman urban context at Saintes, France, and dromedary remains have been recovered from Kompolt-Kistér, Hungary."

Archaeological evidence indicates that camels were used across the Roman empire well into the early medieval period.

As historian Caitlin Green suggests, this includes the island province of Britannia.

In Roman antiquity, the camelus (from the Greek word κάμηλος) could come with one hump or two. 

The single humped camel is commonly called a dromedary. The dromedary was usually from the Arabian Peninsula and the African steppe regions.

The two-humped camel was the Bactrian camel (Camelus bactrianus), which generally hailed from the colder desert regions of Asia. 

There is strong evidence to support the hybridization of these two types as early as the 1st millennium BC, which produced a sturdier one-humped animal that could carry about 100 kg more per day.

From the Hellenistic to the Roman period, dromedaries were used to carry not only freight, but also mail along roads often protected by a police force. 

This was a camel mail service model inspired by the earlier Persian Empire. A number of overland trade routes stemming from the Red Sea ports used these pack animals to transport freight to the East, in order to connect to the Nile.

Yet bone evidence for camels within the empire has now expanded our view of these animals to include an area far beyond just the Red Sea region.

Sunday, November 19, 2017

FLUSHED WITH PRIDE, WE OFFER
THE LATEST POOP ON WORLD TOILET DAY



TODAY November 19 is WORLD TOILET DAY and we are flushed with pride to have kept you on the edge of your seats for five years with headlines on what's new in ancient toilets.

In Ancient Rome, many people believed demons lurked in the sewers ... which meant going to the latrine exposed very delicate parts of the anatomy to demonic attack.

For that reason, lavatories in Rome sometimes featured frescoes emblazoned with protective deities and apotropaic serpents shielding a person squatting in a vulnerable position ... to ward off evil.

In the fresco above, some ancient visitor to a lavatory scrawled graffiti saying: "Cacator cave malum" which means "He who defecates here, beware of evil!"

We were the first to report the discovery by Philippe Charlier, a Parisian forensic expert, that Ancient Greek ceramic discs which hitherto had been thought to be gaming pieces may actually have been used as a form of ANCIENT TOILET PAPER.


Charlier (pictured here) presented among other things, a Greek proverb stating, "Three stones are enough to wipe one's arse," as evidence that such stones were used to clean up after going to the bathroom.

This blog also was among the first to report on the discovery of the world's oldest WOODEN TOILET SEAT in September 2014 at Vindolanda Roman Fort near Hadrian's Wall in northern England.

Experts at Vindolanda believe it is the only find of its kind and dates from the 2nd Century, which dates to the time when the Emperor and Antinous may have visited on an inspection tour.

The site, near Hexham, has previously revealed gold and silver coins and other artefacts of the Roman army. The seat (at right) was discovered in a muddy trench, which was previously filled with rubbish.

Dr Andrew Birley, director of excavations at Vindolanda, told the BBC: "We know a lot about Roman toilets from previous excavations at the site and from the wider Roman world, which have included many fabulous Roman latrines.

"But never before have we had the pleasure of seeing a surviving and perfectly preserved wooden seat.


"As soon as we started to uncover it there was no doubt at all on what we had found. It is made from a very well worked piece of wood and looks pretty comfortable. Now we need to find the toilet that went with it as Roman loos are fascinating places to excavate ... their drains often contain astonishing artefacts," he said.

"Let's face it, if you drop something down a Roman latrine you are unlikely to attempt to fish it out unless you are pretty brave or foolhardy."

Dr Birley said many examples of stone and marble toilet benches existed from across the Roman Empire, but this is believed to be the only surviving wooden seat.

He said it was probably preferred to a cold stone seat given the "chilly northern location".

Saturday, November 18, 2017

IS THIS A TEMPLE TO ANTINOUS?



IS this a small temple to Antinous in Newcastle England? 

This small temple is dedicated to a curly-haired boy god called ANTENOCITICUS ... a deity worshiped by soldiers and local people at the eastern end of Hadrian's Wall.

Antinous in the guise of Antenociticus is not mentioned at any other Romano-British site or on any inscriptions from Europe, which is why it has been identified as a local deity.

Antinous priest and writer MARTINUS CAMPBELL, author of THE LOVE GOD about the life of Antinous, says it is highly possible Antenociticus is a local aspect of Antinous ... perhaps in honor of a visit to this outpost by Antinous and Hadrian.

Martinus says: "Archaeologically there is a period of time in AD 126 to 127 when we have no record of where Hadrian was. We do know, however, that the wall was completed in Ad 128."

He says: "It is believed he would have come to Britannia to oversee the final stages of the wall. It is further believe he would have brought Antinous with him."

Martinus adds: "That is why the locals (mostly of mixed Roman and British blood, by then) connected Antinous to a local deity Citicus and re-named him Antenociticus."  Stone heads of Antenociticus have been found nearby.

Friday, November 17, 2017

NEW ATHENS MUSEUM EXHIBITION
FEATURES RARE ANTINOUS ART



ATHENS was Hadrian's favorite city, and now the National Archaeological Museum in Athens is putting the spotlight on Hadrian and Antinous in a special exhibition.

Included will be treasures long tucked away in storage, such as the inscribed base of a monument in honour of the Emperor Hadrian (below) and an outstanding bust of Antinous (above). 

The works are being displayed for the first time in the heart of the Museum, 19 centuries after the emperor's visit to Athens with Antinous at his side.

The exhibition, entitled "The Builder, Saviour and Olympian" opened 13 November 2017 in the “Hall of the Altar” (hall 34). The show runs through 4 March 2018. 

Their display in the Unseen Museum is part of the temporary exhibition of the National Archaeological Museum entitled "Hadrian and Athens. Conversing with an ideal world" that begins on 28 November 2017 and will be on for a year.

From December 2017 to February 2018, the Museum's archaeologists will welcome visitors and take them on a magic walk into the world of Hadrian and Antinous, from Athens to the sanctuary of the Egyptian Gods in Marathon, revealing the spiritual rebirth of Greek culture in the times of the philhellene emperor.

Presentations

Dates of presentations: December 15 2017, January 12, 26, February 9 and 23 2018, on Friday. December 17 2017, January 14 and 28, February 11 and 25 2018, on Sunday.
Starting time: 13.00

To participate in the presentation it is necessary to purchase a ticket and register upon arrival. The first come first served policy will be observed.


Contact details: National Archaeological Museum, 44 Patision Str, Athens. Tel.: 213214 4817, 213214 4856 / -4858 / -4866 / -4893. Opening hours: Monday 13:00-20:00, Tuesday-Sunday 09:00-16:00. E-mail: eam@culture.gr, www.namuseum.gr

QUINTUS AURELIUS SYMMACHUS
VENERABLE SAINT OF ANTINOUS



WE are proud to consecrate Quintus Aurelius Symmachus as a Venerable Saint of Antinous for his unyielding efforts to uphold the Religion of Antinous in the face of Christian opposition.

A Roman statesman, orator, and man of letters who lived 345 – 402 AD, he held the offices of governor of proconsular Africa in 373, urban prefect of Rome in 384 and 385, and consul in 391.

Symmachus sought to preserve the traditional religions of Rome at a time when the aristocracy was converting to Christianity, and led an unsuccessful delegation of protest against Gratian, when he ordered the Altar of Victory removed from the curia, the principal meeting place of the Roman Senate in the Forum Romanum.

Two years later he made a famous appeal to Gratian's successor, Valentinian II, in a dispatch that was rebutted by Ambrose, the bishop of Milan.

Symmachus's career was temporarily derailed when he supported the short-lived usurper Magnus Maximus, but he was rehabilitated and three years later appointed consul.

Much of his writing has survived: nine books of letters, a collection of Relationes or official dispatches, and fragments of various orations.

Antonius Subia says:

In an age when almost all other Roman Nobility were turning away from our ancient Religion, this gentleman stood strong and faithful and was a voice of dissent against the tidal wave of Christianity that was enveloping the Roman world.  This was the time when the Ancient Religion of Antinous was finally suppressed and destroyed.  We can be sure that this Great Noble Roman was one of the last champions and defenders of our God.

The portrait above shows the Apotheosis of Symmachus ... a relief depicting Symmachus being carried up to the realm of the gods by two divine figures as though he were being deified.  The Zodiac figures may indicate that his Deification took place around the Winter Solstice.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

LOZEN, APACHE WARRIORESS
SAINT OF ANTINOUS



WE honor Lozen, the two-spirit Apache warrioress and holy woman who fought with Geronimo, and who was with his final band of warriors when they surrendered.

She is a blessed Saint of Antinous.

A contemporary observer said:


"Lozen had no concern for her appearance and, even though she is seen in several famous photos of Geronimo with his warriors, there is nothing to indicate that she is a woman. You would never spot her. She was very manly in her appearance, dressed like a man, lived and fought like a man. She never married, and devoted her life to the service of her people, to the very end."

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

HOW TO PLAN YOUR OWN
FESTIVE ANTINOUS BIRTHDAY PARTY



ANTINOUS was born on November 27 and worshipers around the world are busy planning their own festivities ... from Chile to Canada and from New England in the US to New South Wales in Australia.

November marks the start of the ancient pagan Festive Season, a season which is still full of fabulous party dates ... including Christmas, New Year's Eve, Twelfth Night and of course American Thanksgiving. Dia de los Muertos and Halloween/Samhain usher in this Festive Season of twinkly lights and over-eating and drinking way too much. 

Our brothers and sisters at the Fundación Epithimia Antinoo in Mexico are busy making final preparations for an Antinous birthday fiesta. 

For worshipers at the Templo de Antinoo México Temple of Antinous in Mexico City, the fiesta requires weeks or even months of preparation because the papier-mâché icons are created by artist Yanko Garibaldi ... each a work of art. Caricaturis Sirius has also created iconic images of the Martyrs and Saints of Antinous.


Other images on this page offer inspiration for Antinous Birthday festivities. 

At left is "Das Gastmahl" (The Symposion Feast) by Anton von Werner (1877) - preliminary color sketch as part of a series of wall murals on the theme of "Roman Life" for the Café Bauer (53 x 89 cm) (Privately Owned).

Images below are courtesy of the gifted artist FELIX D'EON and serve as an inspiration for Antinous Birthday festivities in the open air ... in the Southern Hemisphere, where the jacarandas are in bloom and summer will soon be here.

These ancient festivities go back WAAAAY before Christianity, of course. So it's a safe bet that Hadrian and Antinous would recognize many of the features of these festivities

So when you plan your Antinous Birthday Party, you can mix-and-match customs from all sorts of pagan Festive Season holidays, in full knowledge that Hadrian and Antinous would nod in approval.

It should be celebrated with feasting and drinking and singing and carousing. Green boughs (palm fronds, holly, pine boughs or whatever is native to your climate) should decorate the feast room in honour of the forests of Bithynia, the highlands of modern-day Turkey where Antinous was born.


Electric lights should be turned off in favor of candlelight or at the very least those strings of tiny "fairy lights" Moslems use during Ramadan and Hindus during Divali and Christians at Christmas.

The one really bright spot in the room should be a bust or image of Antinous, which is spotlighted, signifying our belief that Antinous brings light into the world.

The Antinous Rosy Lotus would be perfect. But since not everyone has access to lotus blossoms in late November, orchids would also be fine. 



Bithynia was well known even in Ancient Times for its forest orchids and the Romans loved orchids ... even orchid root beverages!

Orchids would be lovely as well as being a Hellenistic conversation piece. 


If they are too pricey, then your favorite seasonal flower will do. 

Look around and find something that is beautiful and unique to your own locale which you think would be very nice.

The Birthday of Antinous would be a wonderful opportunity for a costume party, also in keeping with the Halloween-Carnaval-Christmas flavor of these ancient pagan holidays. Guests might be encouraged to come as Greco-Romans or Egyptian priests.

The menu could be Mediterranean, with lots of finger foods such as tahini and couscous and humous and pita bread, stuffed olives, eggplant/aubergine, goat's cheese and so on. 



Refried beans (which the Egyptians call "fuul" and eat for breakfast) would be ideal since the theory goes that the Moors introduced "fuul" to the Spaniards, who introduced it to the New World, where it became refritos ... Mexican refried beans.

But you should feel free to go local with favorite regional dishes of your home area. 


There must be lots of good South American dishes which would be perfect, or Scottish specialties, or Aussie barbecued prawns or New England pot pies ... good simple "plebeian" food which is festive and spicy and filling.

In keeping with these pagan festivals, foods should represent birth and regeneration: beans, peas, black-eyed peas, pumpkins, squash, nuts, berries.

It doesn't really matter what food is served, of course, as long as it's delicious and plentiful, and as long as there is plenty of drink to wash it down, wine or beer or just good old iced tea.



Beer is appropriate, since the Ancient Egyptians were brewing beer thousands of years before Antinous was born.

Antinous' last meal may have been refried beans and beer and flat bread.

In a change from holiday cakes and cookies, how about baking Antinous cookies? 


Bake simple sugar cookies which have been cut out to resemble stars, comets, an imperial crown and Bithynian fir trees and lions and so on and decorate them with Antinoian lettering or symbols.

Instead of gingerbread men, make gingerbread Antinouses. The gingerbread man, after all, is thought to come from pagan rituals for honoring Thor or other gods. 


Generally, they are sweet dough which is filled with a nut-date-spice filling representing rebirth and spiritual sustenance. You still find them today on St. Nicholas' feast day throughout Europe.

Whatever you bake, make sure to include a small "surprise" somewhere in the cake or muffin or cookes for some lucky guest to chomp down on. It doesn't have to be a diamond ring, but a trinket of some sort is always fun. 


If that is too challenging for your skills as a confectioner, then just an ordinary cake with the letters "A-N-T-I-N-O-U-S" in store-bought candy lettering would do the job just as nicely. 

Or just a large "A" in icing in the middle of the cake.

Another tradition should be oracle games. This is the first major festival of the New Year in the Antinoian liturgical calendar, so oracles are appropriate.

And when your guests suggest you are robbing traditions from Christian festivals, just look them square in the eye and insist that the Christians stole these wonderful traditions from us pagans because the Christians didn't have any of their own. 



Where would Christian holidays be without pagan traditions?

Who knows? Perhaps Hadrian and Antinous enjoyed these very same pagan traditions in their Saturnalia revelries.

One more thing: Mistletoe. Mistletoe is plentiful in the forests of Bithynia. You can never have enough mistletoe ... as these two 1928 vendors in Paris show.


Antinous would be well familiar with mistletoe. I'm sure he would like it as a reminder of his boyhood hikes through the woods of home.

Use your imagination and you'll come up with lots of ideas.


Let the Festive Season Begin with an Antinous Birthday Party!

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

YOU DON'T NEED A TEMPLE OF STONE
TO CELEBRATE THE BIRTHDAY
OF ANTINOUS



THE birthday of Antinous is November 27 and worshipers all over the world are planning celebrations.

But some people are unable to celebrate as expansively and as joyously as they would like. 

We received the following succinct smart phone message yesterday from a very dear adherent of Antinous in the American Bible Belt who said:

"I am a bit envious that you get to celebrate his birthday openly. I've got two straight housemates. Oh well ... maybe some day ...."

And like many people, he also has to work on that day ... and others have to work perhaps at two jobs to make ends meet. And then there are the people who just don't have the money or the facilities for a formal celebration.

There is a common misconception that you need to have a large and elaborate ALTAR OR SHRINE in your home. But the truest shrine is in your heart. You can download a photo of Antinous and put it in your wallet ... and it truly becomes Antinous the Gay God if you see HIM in it.

A shrine or sacred image of Antinous can be very SMALL AND MODEST.

The Ancient Priests of Antinous were experts in such things ... though 1,800 years of Christianity has resulted in that knowledge having become lost for the vast majority of people in Western civilization.

For the Ancient Priests of Antinous, what existed on the physical level drew to itself the specific spiritual energies of which the physical form was a type.

For the Magical Consciousness, every ritual action done on the physical level, every form created, every word spoken or written, acted as the magnet to which its spiritual counterpart irresistably was pulled.

Thus, a consecrated image of Antinous is not an "idol" and his worshippers are not "idolators."

Why not?

Because an idol is a physical object and nothing more than a physical object. The statues of Antinous were not "idols" because the Ancient Priests of Antinous could  never have conceived of such a notion. It is important that we remember that the Ancient Priests of Antinous conceived of a world which was ... unlike our own ... an ANIMATED world from the beginning. Everything in their physical world was alive with spiritual dimensions.

They didn't PROJECT a spiritual entity into a hunk of carved marble. Instead, they APPREHENDED the spiritual entity that was already inside the stone.

Anybody who has been around our own FLAMEN ANTONIUS SUBIA has seem him use his Inner Eye to do the same thing. He will look at a statue of a "Greek Ephebe" and will look inward for a moment and then will say, "It's Antinous!"

Some have criticized him for doing this, saying he can't possibly know the provenance of the statue and whether it was perhaps actually supposed to be Hermes or someone else. Antonyus uses his Inner Eye and "sees" the spiritual Blessed Boy in the stone ... or says it is not Antinous, as the case may be.

The Ancient Priests of Antinous did the same thing in carrying out religio-magical services for the faithful. Not only could a physical image (whether two-dimensional or three-dimensional) provide a "body" for an already existent spiritual entity, but images could also become the spiritual base for "thought forms" that were called into existence through their being represented in miniature on the physical plane.

The Ancient Priests of Antinous were deeply aware of the interdependence between the Divine World and the Human World. In the times in which they lived, these two spheres were not experienced as separate from each other in the way that they have come to be experienced today.


"As Above, So Below" was not just a catch-phrase for them, but instead it was a way of life.

It is our goal in this distant, soulless, post-modern age, to rediscover this ability to live in relationship to, and act as a conduit for, Antinous the Gay God.

We cannot recreate the ancient religion of Antinous. It is dead and we human beings have developed in other directions. We are not attempting to "reconstruct" the Religion of Antinous. Our goal is to fashion a Religion of Antinous which meets the spiritual needs of post-modern, post-Christian and post-pagan gay men.

But we can learn from the Ancient Priests of Antinous. The cosmos of which they were aware was primarily spiritual and only secondarily material. In their physical world, everything was spiritually alive ... even soft-toys, coins and bronze (or maybe brass) statuettes bought on eBay ... even a downloaded photo in a hip wallet.

The main task of the Ancient Priests of Antinous was to build a magical bridge between physical and spiritual reality, momentarily bringing them into conjunction.

So the answer to the question "Is that image really Antinous?" would be answered this way by an Ancient Priest of Antinous: "It is so if you MAKE it so. Open your eyes to the 'Antinous Within'. Apprehend HIS presence which is already inside the earthly reproduction. Through you, then, it IS Antinous!"

HOMOTHEOSIS ... Gay-Man-Godliness-Becoming-the-Same.


You don't need to build a temple of steel, stone and glass. You ARE the temple.

Monday, November 13, 2017

THE FEAST OF JUPITER, JUNO, MINERVA



ON the 13th November we celebrate the Roman feast of Jupiter, Minerva and Juno. Romans celebrate with a lavish feast outdoors, with the statues of the gods being brought in as the major guests. The feast is in the inner courtyard, open to the sky, so that the gods can see that all is done correctly.

13 de novembro é a festa romana de Júpiter, Minerva e Juno. Os romanos celebraram com uma festa pródiga ao ar livre, com as estátuas dos deuses sendo trazidas como os principais convidados. A festa está no pátio interior, aberta ao céu, para que os deuses possam ver que tudo é feito corretamente.

El 13 de noviembre es la fiesta romana de Júpiter, Minerva y Juno. Los romanos celebraban con un festín lujoso al aire libre, con las estatuas de los dioses como los principales invitados. La fiesta está en el patio interior, abierto al cielo, para que los dioses puedan ver que todo está hecho correctamente.

Sunday, November 12, 2017

HOW A PLASTER HEAD
OF ANTINOUS IS MADE


HERE are some stunning photos of how a plaster head of Antinous is made, using a silicone form and water and plaster ... and craftsmanship. CLICK HERE for the artisan's explanation.











Saturday, November 11, 2017

NIANKHKHNUM and KHNUMHOTEP
SAINTS OF ANTINOUS


ON November 11th the Religion of Antinous honors two men whose love for each other has survived the fall of all ancient civilizations.

We honor Niankhkhnum and Khnumhotep, Blessed Saints of Antinous.They lived in Egypt 2,000 years before the siege of Troy. 

They had been dead and forgotten for 2,650 years when Hadrian and Antinous visited Mennefer (Memphis) Egypt in 130 AD. 

Most likely Hadrian and Antinous stood directly on top of (or very nearly on top of) the lost tomb of these two men — two men who were buried together at the Memphis necropolis some 4,500 years ago.

When the tomb was discovered in 1964 it sent shock waves through the dusty world of Egyptology. The vividly painted reliefs on the walls of the tomb showed an intimate embrace between two male Royal Manicurists — the first recorded depiction of an openly homosexual couple.
Prudish Egyptologists have argued ever since that the two men were "just good friends" or perhaps that they were possibly "twin brothers".

But recent research by more open-minded archaeologists, such as California-based EGYPTOLOGIST GREG REEDER, has offered compelling evidence that the two men were more than "just good friends" or "close brothers."

Greg Reeder has written and lectured extensively on this extraordinary tomb, which was uncovered in 1964 in the necropolis of Saqqara at Memphis, on the west bank of the Nile. The site atop a cliff overlooking the Nile has drawn tourists since ancient times. Julius Caesar and Cleopatra stood atop this cliff and gazed in awe at its ancient tomb structures.

Hadrian and Antinous almost certainly stood on this very same spot in October of the year 130 AD, only weeks before Antinous drowned in the Nile. Beneath their feet was the Lost Tomb of Niankhkhnum and Khnumhotep. The sand has been removed and now that long-lost tomb is no longer lost.

And what a tomb it is! It has a splendid entrance and charming layout befitting a pleasant gay holiday retreat cottage — for an eternal, never-ending holiday vacation.

While grave robbers stripped the tomb of relics in antiquity, the wall paintings reveal tantalizing hints about its original occupants. The men are repeatedly depicted together, sometimes holding hands, sometimes with their arms around each other.

In two instances they are shown with their noses touching — the most intimate embrace permitted in Egyptian art of the time — tantamount to kissing. Their bodies are pressed so closely together that their groins rub against each other in a decidedly intimate sort of way. 

In Ancient Egypt, such male-male depictions were reserved for kings who merged with gods, not for two mortal men.

They are so close together that some Egyptologists have theorized that they may have been Siamese twins joined at the hips.

Other figures, identified as wives and children, are relegated to the background. In one scene, in which the two men share a final banquet before their journey into the afterlife, Niankhkhnum' s "wife" has been plastered over by the craftsmen who decorated the tomb. Khnumhotep's spouse fails to make an appearance at all — highly unusual in Egyptian tomb art, if not totally unprecedented.

Throughout the tomb, the two men are depicted in joyous pursuits, such as this relief vignette (right) showing one of them playing flute accompaniment as the other sings.

The magnificent reliefs show a variety of scenes involving nude or semi-nude males involved in all sorts of artistic and manly activities, such as one scene (below left) of a sort of "Egyptian Rodeo" bull-roping tournament with accompanying scenes of a raucous "beef barbecue" feast.

Or the scene (below right) of athletic youths — so sparingly attired you can see they are circumcised — engaged in a playful mock battle using reed skiffs on the Nile.

Throughout the tomb, the reliefs show men, men, men (and a few token females) engaged in service to the tomb's two male occupants who are — unprecedented in Egyptian Sacred Art — wholly committed to each other. Other tombs invariably show man-and-wife. Not this one.

Hieroglyphs describe the men as "Overseers of the Royal Manicurists" to pharaoh. 
Ostensibly, they were responsible for the care of the pharaoh's hands and were among the select few permitted to touch the ruler. 

However, it is also possible that the title "Royal Manicurist" could be a ceremonial honor similar to the "Order of the Garter".

Though the hieroglyphs say nothing of the two men's relationship, Greg Reeder, an Egyptologist based in San Francisco, believes the wall paintings suggest homosexuality is the answer. Reeder points out that Niankhkhnum and Khnumhotep clearly chose to depict themselves in poses usually restricted to husbands and wives in other tombs. 

"Same-sex desire must be considered as a probable explanation," Reeder said at a lecture in Britain which made headlines a couple of years ago.

"We can only say for certain that the carvings show a profound intimacy between the two men, and the people who built the tomb were possibly unsure how to portray this," the US archaeologist noted.

The tomb was restored by German archaeologists in the late 1970s and opened to the public in the 1990s.

While gay tour operators have not targeted the site, in large part because Egypt outlaws homosexual activity, Greg Reeder's articles and lectures have created gay interest in this long-lost tomb.

"It has now become famous and lots of gay tourists go there," he says with scholarly pride.

Reeder notes that, regardless of whether the two men were sexual lovers, they were definitely two men who loved each other so much that they wanted to spend all eternity in an intimate embrace.

Even their two names are intertwined. Over the entrance to one chamber their names are mingled together so that Niankhkhnum and Khnumhotep become "NiankhKHNUMhotep" — Peace and Life joined in the ram-headed Source-of-the-Nile Deity Khnum, clearly their mutual sacred patron.

Thus, their names blend together, forming a single name: "Joined in Life and Joined in Peace at the Source of All That Lives and Dies and is Born Again for All Eternity". Such is the subtlety of the Egyptian language, which turns a name into a commitment.
Our Flamen Antinoalis Antonyus Subia says:
"Niankhkhnum and Khnumhotep is one of the earliest and most vivid portrayals of homosexual love, crossing all boundaries, binding two men and two families for all time, and demonstrating the profound antiquity and sacredness of our form of love." 
Thanks largely to the bold and candid research of Greg Reeder, the names of Niankhkhnum and Khnumhotep have been rescued from oblivion, so that their KAs might live forever — together! 

Friday, November 10, 2017

SAINT ARTHUR RIMBAUD


ON November 10th the Religion of Antinous honors St. Arthur Rimbaud, the free-spirited French poet whose openly gay lifestyle shocked even the most avant garde artists of London and Paris in the late 19th Century.

On this day, in 1891, the poet Arthur Rimbaud, Saint of Antinous, died of cancer just three months short of his 37th birthday. Despite his early death, he was already an acclaimed and highly controversial literary figure.

In his youth, Rimbaud had been what we would nowadays call a twink. A schoolboy friend said he was prettier than any of the girls and that he had "the most beautiful pale blue eyes" he had ever seen.

Raised by a staunchly Catholic single mother in isolation in the country, Rimbaud ran away to Paris at age 16 with no money but with a prodigious talent for poetry — he had already published a couple of highly praised poems.

In Paris, Rimbaud's behavior became outwardly provocative. The mild-mannered country boy started drinking, speaking rudely and writing scatological poems, stealing books from local shops, and instead of his previous neat appearance and in defiance of short-hair fashions, he began to wear his hair rebelliously long.

At the same time he wrote to an old school teacher of his who had encouraged his poetic talents, telling him about his method for attaining poetical transcendence or visionary power through a "long, intimidating, immense and rational derangement of all the senses. The sufferings are enormous, but one must be strong, be born a poet, and I have recognized myself as a poet."

Still a teenager, he was friends with radical Communists in Paris known as the Communards (hence the name of the '80s pop group) and he even wrote a poem about being sodomized by drunken Communard paramilitary men entitled "Le Coeur Supplicié" (The Tortured Heart).

He solicited the friendship of the established poet Paul Verlaine by audaciously writing a love letter to him and enclosing two hotly sexy poems, including the hypnotic, gradually shocking "Le Dormeur du Val" (The Sleeper of the Vale), in which the forces of Nature more or less rape a sleeping soldier.
  
Verlaine, who was intrigued by Rimbaud, sent a reply that stated, "Come, dear great soul. We await you; we desire you," along with a one-way ticket to Paris.

Verlaine was so smitten with the 17-year-old Rimbaud, that he abandoned his heavily pregnant 17-year-old wife and took up living with Rimbaud instead. Verlaine quit his job to become what he called "a full-time professional drunk" At left is a caricature of Rimbaud that Verlaine lovingly sketched about that time.

All of Paris was shocked by their behavior which, even among avant-garde artists, was considered scandalous.

The two of them fled to London, where they lived the life of starving artists. Rimbaud spent most of his time in the Reading Room of the British Museum for the simple reason that "heating, lighting, pens and ink were free", he later said. 

Verlaine and Rimbaud had a volatile on-again, off-again relationship punctuated by drunken bitch fights and which climaxed with Verlaine firing a gunshot at Rimbaud which resulted in a wrist wound.

In his 20s and early 30s, Rimbaud was a vagabond poet who traveled the world, mostly on foot, doing odd jobs and writing poems. There is a marble plaque on the island of Java commemorating his short visit there as a soldier in the Dutch Colonial Army — he decided the military life was not for him and deserted almost immediately upon arrival there and returned to Europe.
He was living on the Horn of Africa with an Ethiopian mistress (he had had several lovers of both sexes, basically one in every port) when his health began to deteriorate due to what would later be diagnosed as cancer — alas, the diagnosis would be made too late to save his life.

He was 17 years old when he wrote the poem The Drunken Boat: 


"..Lighter than a cork, I danced on the waves which men call eternal rollers of victims, for ten nights, without once missing the foolish eye of the harbor lights! Sweeter than the flesh of sour apples to children, the green water penetrated my pinewood hull and washed me clean of the bluish wine-stains and the splashes of vomit, carrying away both rudder and anchor. And from that time on I bathed in the Poem of the Sea, star-infused and churned into milk, devouring the green azures; where, entranced and pallid, a dreaming drowned man sometimes goes down; where, suddenly dyeing the bluenesses- deliriums and slow rhythms under the gleams of the daylight, stronger than alcohol, vaster than music-ferment the bitter redness of love."
We dedicate this poem and the course of the free and disordered life  of St. Arthur Rimbaud to the period of 72 Archons, and our difficult passage towards godliness.