Sunday, September 18, 2005

Ante Diem XIII Kalendas October

Modern Date : September 19th

Ante Diem XIII Kalendas October
The Ludi Romani

This is one of the dies comitiales when committees of citizens could vote on political or criminal matters.

The emperor Antoninus Pius was born at Lanuvium this day in 86 AD.

Pliny records that in 61 BCE, Dimitius Ahenobarbus provided a spectacle in the circus with a hundred Numidian bears and the same number of Ethiopian hunters. No wonder you don't find any native bears left in Africa.

In Greece, the Festival of the Eleusinian Mysteries continued this day, a procession was led from Athens, presumably from the sea to the Temple. Initiations would take place in a secret underground chamber full of passageways and sacred objects, and these rites would continue till the end of the month. Many Romans sought admittance to these mysteries, incuding Marcus Aurelius, who succeeded, and Nero, who did not. Cicero, who succeeded, implied of the rites of Eleusis that "...they seem to be a recognition of the powers of Nature rather than the power of God." (from The Nature of the Gods)

This is the last day of the Ludi Romani, the great games celebrated in honor of Jupiter (Jove).

September is the 'magical' seventh month (after March).

The Egyptians honored their god Thoth today with a day-long fast. Thoth is the name given by the Greeks to the Egyptian god Djeheuty. Thoth was the god of wisdom, inventor of writing, patron of scribes and the divine mediator. He is most often represented as a man with the head of an ibis, holding a scribal palette and reed pen. He could also be shown completely as an ibis or a baboon.

As with most Egyptian deities there were many different stories regarding the parentage of Thoth. Many sources call him the son of Re, but one tradition has him springing forth from the head of Seth. This latter story is reminiscent of the birth of the Greek goddess Athena, who like Thoth was the patron divinity of wisdom. Thoth was also a lunar deity, and whatever form he took he wore a lunar crescent on his head. Some Egyptologists think that the Egyptians identified the crescent moon with the curved beak of the ibis. It is also suggested that the Egyptians observed that baboon was a nocturnal (i.e. lunar) animal who would greet the sun with chattering noises each morning. Since he was the messenger of the gods Thoth was identified by the Greeks with their own god Hermes. For this reason Thoth's center of worship is still known to us today as Hermopolis.

Song Jiang the God of Thieves
On the 17th day of the 8th lunar month, the Chinese honor Song Jiang, the God of Thieves and Whistleblowers.

Who says crime doesn't pay? After breaking every law imaginable, he went straight to Feng Du, the Chinese Hell. Yen Lo Wang, the God of Death, was shocked at his blatent naughtiness and booked him into every torture chamber available. But then Song Jiang spoke up. "You may think I was evil, but all the bureaucrats in my province are ten times worse. I was only following their example." He then proceeded to give names, places and dates.

This evidence convicted many high-ranking officials and filled Feng Du's punishment zone to overflowing. The Gods were most pleased, gave him a free pardon and elevated him to deity status. Sounds like the US Government. Thus by becoming an informant, he scammed his way into the job he now holds. The perfect crime.

St. Januarius
In the Roman Catholic calendar, feast of St. Januarius, Bishop of Beneventum and celebrated martyr who went the hard way during the persecutions of Diocletian (285 - 310). Januarius was one of the bishops and other Christians who were thrown to the beasts in the circus of Campania by the prefect, who was mortified when lions and tigers who should have been ravenous, chose not to eat the Christians, but lay down around them. Januarius and his fellow saints were then beheaded, only to steal the show in the end in one of history's most remarkable ongoing miracles. Two vials of Januarius' blood, preserved in their congealed state in the cathedral of Naples, sometimes liquefy when they are brought near the saint's head in a solemn annual festival. This last happened in 2000. St. Januarius is better known in Italian as San Gennaro (sausage), whose feast is literally that, a raucous celebration of sausage and merriment. The month of January is not named after this Saint, that distinction belongs to the Roman god Janus.

Lailat Al-Bara'ah
In the Islamic calendar, the evening of this day begins Lailat Al-Bara'ah, also called Nisfu Sha'ban, the night of repentance, when the devout ask forgiveness for all wrongs done in the preceding year. On this day Allah writes the destinies of all men for the coming year. It is a joyous occasion and the whole night is spent in revelry and merry making. Sweets, specially sevvaiyan (vermicelli) are sent to the houses of friends and relatives. Fatiha or blessings are recited over food in the name of the Prophet, his daughter Fatimah, and his son-in-law Ali. The Holy Koran is recited and at night, fireworks light the sky.

1ST Amendment Violation
On this day in 1985, Congressman Robert S Walker, a Republican Congressman from Pennsylvania, introduced bill HR-3389 to amend IRS rules to deny tax-exempt status to witchcraft organizations. It didn't pass thank the Goddess.

Ante Diem XIV Kalendas October

Modern Date : September 18th

Ante Diem XIV Kalendas October
The Ludi Romani

This is one of the dies comitiales when committees of citizens could vote on political or criminal matters.

The emperor Trajan was born Marcus Ulpius Traianus at Italica in Spain, in 53 AD.

The emperor Domitian was murdered in the Imperial Palace this day in 96 AD. He was 44. Nerva became the next emperor this day.

Flavius Dalmatius became co-emperor, in Constantinople, on this day in 335 AD.

In Greece, the Festival of the Eleusinian Mysteries continues this day. Many Romans sought admittance to these mysteries, incuding Marcus Aurelius, who succeeded, and Nero, who did not. Cicero, who succeeded, implied of the rites of Eleusis that "...they seem to be a recognition of the powers of Nature rather than the power of the Gods."

The Ludi Romani, the great games in honor of Jupiter (Jove) continued this day and were celebrated through to the 19th.

The emperor Constantine was victorious over Licinius this day at Chrysopolis in 324 AD. Licinius was initially exiled, and later Constantine had him killed.

September is the 'magical' seventh month (after March).

St Sophia
In Hugo's "Lives of the Saints" it reads, "Nothing is known about this saint who is commemorated today, except her baptismal nameā€¦found inscribed on a tomb in a cemetery reserved for martyrs." In her pictures she is shown with her three daughters: Faith, Hope and Charity. Attwater (The Penguin Dictionary of the Saints), lists her feast day as September 30. It is appropriate that her feast day falls in the same month as so many holy days honoring Mary, for she represents the feminine principle, otherwise missing in Christianity. She's the saintly version of the great goddess of wisdom, Sophia, praised in Proverbs (3:13)

"She is more precious than jewels, and nothing you desire can compare with her.

Long life is in her right hand; in her left hand are riches and honor.

Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace.

She is a tree of life to those who lay hold of her; those who hold her fast are called happy."

Birthday of the Monkey God, Ts'oi T'in Tai Seng Yeh
The 16th day of the eighth month is celebrated in Singapore as the birthday of the Monkey God. Although his shrines are often small and humble, they are popular with the people who come to consult the mediums attached to them.

Priests enter trances to channel the spirit of the Monkey God, making them behave like monkeys. To signify the Monkey Gods bravery, they skewer themselves through the cheek and tongue, or slash their arms and legs. A grand procession through the streets leads to the Monkey God Temple. An empty sedan chair is carried by devotees and the entranced, pierced priests file behind with spears and skewers. Chinese opera and puppet plays are often performed in the temple courtyard.