Dios de la Muerte, Museo de Antropología, México, D.F.
The Ankh, or Cross of Life, is actually an Egyptian icon rather than a Wicca symbol. In hieroglyphics, the Ankh means “life”.
An Ankh is the union of the symbols for the Goddess and the God - the female oval and the male cross or staff. This symbolises the infinite creative power of the universe.
It “seems to have evolved from an ancient symbol of the Goddess in Libya and Phoenicia: a narrow triangle surmountd by a crossbar and a round or oval head.”
It is believed that in the fifth century, the Christians adapted the ankh again for their own use, leaving out the feminine aspect, and keeping only the masculine cross.
The ankh has been widely adopted in neopagan circles for its ancient mystical meaning of eternal life and the Divine Union of the Goddess and the God. Although not strictly a Wicca symbol it is worn by many witches.
The first recorded instance of veiling for women is recorded in an Assyrian legal text from the 13th century BCE, which restricted its use to noble women. Assyrian kings first introduced both the seclusion of women in the royal harem and the veil. Prostitutes and slaves, however, were forbidden against wearing veil, and were punished if they disobeyed this law.
Classical Greek and Hellenistic statues sometimes depict Greek women with both their head and face covered by a veil. Scholars think that it was commonplace for women (at least those of higher status) in ancient Greece to cover their hair and face in public. Beyond the Near East, the practice of hiding one’s face and largely living in seclusion appeared in classical Greece, in the Byzantine Christian world, in Persia, and in India among upper caste Rajput women.
(Pictured above are reproductions of the famous Veiled Lady, by Raffaelle Monti, 1875)
Buddhist worship, Thailand
After the craziness of India, Thailand seems like a tame place - even Bangkok came off as surprisingly calm in comparison! The capital was a great surprise actually - some lovely sights and friendly locals. Our next stop, Sukhothai, was amazing: the entire ancient city is now a UNESCO world heritage site and is full of old Buddhist temples and statues which we cycled around in the pleasant rural setting. We then went North to Chiang Mai, a lovely relaxing town full of Buddhist Wats which we spent a full day exploring followed by a vegetarian Thai cooking course and a relaxing (if not slightly painful!) Thai massage!
‘Distant Thunder’: Native Musical Aspires to Take Broadway by Storm
Now that Distant Thunder, the Native American musical, has premiered in New York City’s posh Greenwich Village, the next big step is to book the show at a theatre off Broadway, said the play’s co-author Shaun Taylor-Corbett.
Culture shock for Amazon chief’s son who left rainforest for New York (by 13jaipals13)
I absolutely love this. And this Chief’s son inspires me on my own path to do the same. I’ve always wanted to grow up to become an animated filmmaker, especially focusing on my own people. In hopes to teach and spread education and good things about my own people. *u* Very beautiful.