Sunday, January 21, 2018

THE ASSUMPTION OF GANYMEDE


OUR Father Jupiter descended upon the slopes of Mt. Ida in the form of an eagle and carried away Ganymede, the beautiful young prince of Troy, ravaging him, and elevating him to live among the immortals.

At the table of the Olympian gods, Jupiter installed his Ganymede as the divine cupbearer who pours out nectar-wine from the cup of eternal life.

This love affair between the Phrygian prince and the Father of the Gods is a divine parallel of the love between Antinous and Hadrian.

Ganymede is the emblem of the coming Age of Aquarius, when peace and love will rule the hearts of all men.

On this day, the beginning of the sign of Aquarius, we observe the deification of Antinous as having made union with the Thunderbird-Phoenix-Eagle, and having been elevated to reign among the immortals in the manner of Ganymede. And we pray for the hastening of the coming age.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

THE GOING FORTH OF ANUBIS


ON January 20th is the Ancient Egyptian Feast of "The Going Forth of Anubis" (Yinepu) when his statues are carried through the streets for worshipers to honor ... in hopes that Anubis will convey them through the darkness of death to eternal light and life. 

This feast occurs between the completion of the mummification of Antinous on January 11th and the birthday of Hadrian on January 24th.

Anubis leads the new god Antinous to the Home of the Gods amongst the Imperishable Stars.

SAINT SEBASTIAN


ON January 20th the Religion of Antinous honors SAINT SEBASTIAN who, despite being a Christian martyr, has been identified by homosexuals of all beliefs over the centuries as a symbol of our persecution and suffering.

Sebastian was an officer in the Imperial Guard of Emperor Diocletian, and he was a Christian.

In 302 A.D. Diocletian subjected the Christians to a brutal persecution, and it was during this period that Sebastian was "outed" to the Emperor as a practicing Christian.

When asked to sacrifice before a pagan altar, Sebastian refused and  was sentenced to death. He was tied to a column before Mauritanian archers, who shot him with arrows...but to no effect. 

Sebastian was strengthened by his faith, and did not die. He was finally clubbed to death in front of Emperor.



Homosexuals over the centuries have looked to Sebastian as a patron saint. 

His manner of death, which is like an affliction of Eros, and the sight of the beautiful young soldier plumed with arrows, has moved our hearts over the ages more than all other Christian saints.

In the Middle Ages, he was said to have power over the plague. And during the Black Death, his popularity grew among the penitent flagellants.

His image was a favorite subject of homosexual artists during the Renaissance who were fascinated by the erotic charge of his death. 

During the early 19th Century he was taken up as the model for homosexual suffering and persecution, some writers even claiming that he was the young lover of Diocletian and that his martyrdom had a jealous, sexual subtext.

In our time, the power of St. Sebastian over the Plague has made him a spiritual force in the fight against AIDS. And so we recognize his sanctity as the patron saint of homosexuals and as a protector from our modern plague.


 We consecrate him to the Religion of Antinous and offer our own quivering-hearts as a target for his thousand arrows of love.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

RUFUS WAINWRIGHT'S HADRIAN OPERA
TO PREMIERE IN OCTOBER IN TORONTO



THE long-awaited opera about Antinous and Hadrian by Rufus Wainwright will have its world premiere in October 2018 with the Canadian Opera Company in Toronto, it was announced today.

The opera by Wainright and Daniel McIvor, entitled "Hadrian," which explores the relationship between Roman Emperor Hadrian and the young Antinous, will run October 13–27 at Toronto’s Four Seasons Centre.

Peter Hinton will direct a cast that includes Thomas Hampson as Hadrian and renowned tenor Isaiah Bell as Antinous, with Karita Mattila as Plotina.

Wainwright and MacIvor's Hadrian (October 13-27) is a major draw for the company's 2018/19 season. 

The piece marks playwright/actor MacIvor's first libretto (the text of an opera) and Wainwright's second opera, following his 2009 Prima Donna. 

Their piece tells the story of the Roman emperor and his young lover Antinous, who was deified after his mysterious and premature death.

Between the Wainwright factor and Hadrian's subject matter, it's fair to say that this world premiere comes with a lot of hype.

Wainwright has offered the promise of something provocative:

"I think in our modern world," he says, "among younger audiences especially, there's a hunger for a sort of spectacle that the opera world thinks is no longer relevant."

The COC rounds up a fascinating cast of big names (Thomas Hampson, Karita Mattila and Ben Heppner ... who will venture out of retirement for the occasion) and rising stars Isaiah Bell (pictured at right) as Antinous and Ambur Braid as Hadrian's wife, Sabina.

"What's interesting about the story of Hadrian is he was actually in love with Antinous, who was another man," Wainwright says

"And he was persecuted for it. A lot of the same problems that exist today with homophobia and so forth were very much present back then," he adds.

Wainwright is the gifted Canadian singer/songwriter/musical man about the world who has forged a unique career in mainstream contemporary music as an original, quirky, thinking person's pop star. And he's not new to the world of opera.

"Prima Donna," his 2009 debut, which told the story of an aging opera singer attempting to make a comeback, has been presented in Manchester, London, New York, Toronto and around the globe, to reviews that roamed from the enthusiastic ("a love song to opera," wrote The Times of London) to the outraged (The New York Times called it "an ultimately mystifying failure") – the quality of reaction being determined, more or less, by the closeness of the reviewer to the world of classical music.


Wainwright started talking about Hadrian around the time he was serenading his mother with the opera's overture in early 2010.

As his mother, Kate McGarrigle, faced her final days in January, 2010, Wainwright played his latest composition for her at the family piano ... the overture to his new opera about Antinous and Hadrian.

What attracted him to Hadrian was the power of the story Wainwright wanted to tell. 

Certainly the story of the Emperor Hadrian has plenty to offer contemporary audiences. Quixotic, domineering and visionary, Hadrian represented the end of the Classical era in Roman history, a fascinating period when the influence of Greek ideas began to predominate in Roman society, changing its political landscape in significant ways.

Wainwright adds, "And then there's Antinous, essentially the male equivalent to Helen of Troy ... though we know he actually existed and exactly what he looked like. At one point he was neck and neck with Christ in terms of cult status after disappearing in the Nile. Imagine what a different world that would have been if he had lived!"

Wainwright explains, "When I first discovered the story of Hadrian, I was instantly struck with the idea of transforming this historical subject into operatic form. 

"Both its intimate nature and wild grandeur seemed perfectly suited for what opera does best: creating a hyper-illustration of the dark inner lives of people up against formidable outer circumstances while at the same time musically careening through the jagged and surreal dimensions of what lies in between. 

"No other theatrical form truly refracts life into myriad vibrantly bright colors as much as opera does, and the tale of Hadrian, arguably Rome’s greatest ruler, is a diamond perfectly cut for such a task.

"I could go on and on exploring all the fascinating ideas which swirl around the subject of my second opera. But I am a composer, and therefore my armchair intellectual reach should be superseded by the music … music that I hope you enjoy."

NEW HADRIAN EXHIBITION OPENS
IN HIS FAVORITE CITY ATHENS



HADRIAN loved all things Greek (especially Antinous) and Athens was his favorite city.

Now an exhibition entitled "Hadrian! Savior and Builder," dedicated to the emperor, will feature at the newly restored Fethiye Mosque in Athens’ Roman Agora this week.

The exhibition opens on Wednesday and is being organized by the Ephorate of Antiquities of Athens.

A wealth of material on Hadrian’s architectural and infrastructure works which benefited Athens during Roman rule will be on display.

Hadrian was an avid admirer of Greek culture and he visited the city three times as Roman ruler. At the same time he brought important state reforms.

The new exhibition also features artifacts from Athens itself, influenced by the spirit of Hadrian.

Fethiye Mosque was built in the second half of the 17th century when Athens was under Ottoman rule. It is located in the northern part of the Roman Agora, near the Tower of the Winds, built on the ruins of a three-aisled basilica of the Middle Byzantine period.

Since 1834, when Athens became the capital of the Greek state and until the first decades of the 20th century it was used as a military bakery. Since then it has been used mainly as a warehouse for antiquities discovered in the excavations of the Agora and the Acropolis.

In the autumn of 2010, the Ministry of Culture decided to empty the building of the various antiquities and launched a renovation project.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

ROBOTS TO PROBE MYSTERY 'VOIDS'
DETECTED DEEP IN THE GREAT PYRAMID



USING cosmic particles called muons, and possibly tiny robots, scientists hope to figure out what created two mysterious voids inside the Great Pyramid.

Possibilities range from a new burial chamber to a sealed-off construction passage.

In November 2017, scientists using an imaging method based on cosmic rays have detected a mysterious and very large chamber-like "void" in the Great Pyramid of Khufu.

Researchers announced the discovery on today but said they did not know the purpose, contents or precise dimensions of what they are calling a "void" or "cavity" inside the pyramid.

To peer inside the pyramid, the scientists used an imaging technique called muon tomography that tracks particles that bombard Earth at close to the speed of light and penetrate deeply into solid objects.

They said the newly discovered "internal structure" was at least 100 feet (30 meters) long, and located above a hallway measuring about 155 feet long (47 meters) called the Grand Gallery, one of a series of passageways and chambers inside the immense pyramid.

The researchers said it constitutes the first major inner structure found in the Great Pyramid since the 19th century.

"What we are sure about is that this big void is there, that it is impressive, that it was not expected by, as far as I know, any kind of theory," said Mehdi Tayoubi, president and co-founder of the HIP Institute in France, one of the leaders of the study published in the journal Nature.

"We open the question to Egyptologists and archaeologists: what could it be?" added Hany Helal of Cairo University.

The findings come from a project called Scan Pyramids that relies on non-invasive scanning methods to probe the internal structure of the pyramids of ancient Egypt's glorious Old Kingdom period and understand how they were built.

"We are not doing this mission in order to find hidden cavities," Helal said.

Muon particles originate from interactions between cosmic rays from space and atoms of Earth's upper atmosphere. The particles can penetrate hundreds of yards (meters) into stone before being absorbed. Placing detectors inside a pyramid can discern cavities within a solid structure.


Tuesday, January 16, 2018

GOLDEN GREEK GOD ON THE GO



OUR Flamen Antonius Subia was amazed today when he was commuting to work and saw Antinous beaming at him from the side of an organic produce delivery truck in Hollywood, California.

"I saw HIM this morning!" Antonius said. "I really needed a good sign ... thank you, Antinous, sometimes I just need to know you're there!"

The Antinous motif is one of several emblazoned on the fleet of trucks operating for the GOLDEN GREEK FRESH organic produce company.

The trucks got their Antinous style make-over recently, so Antonius is among the first people to see it.

The trucks deliver produce to food retailers throughout the Los Angeles and Orange County area.

That means HOLLYWOOD TEMPLE OF ANTINOUS worshipers can expect to see their God on the highways and byways of their city.