His lovely face is back, in full force, in my life, and my immediate visual range, once again, dear friends…
So, I arrived back from our Foundation Day ritual for Antinous almost ninety minutes ago, and before I head to bed for the night for a few hours before I have to get up for work at 6 AM, I wanted to get a few thoughts down on how things went.
Including myself, there were eight people present at the ritual: five Mystai, one person I’d not met previously, one of my friends/students who was kind enough to drive, and myself. I brought a relatively small number of gods with me–Hathor, Bes, and Serapis, Wepwawet, Ianus, and Hekate, plus Polydeukion and all of the Divi of whom I have coins (Hadrian, Sabina, Aelius Caesar, Trajan, Lucius Verus, Marcus Aurelius, Plotina, Marciana, and Matidia), but others also brought Hermes, Apollon, Dionysos, Pan, and Aphrodite.
We did a variety of things slightly differently this year: no Obelisk of Antinous, for example, but instead the “Frankensteinian Hymn” from last year (which works incredibly well, and creates the space that the Obelisk also can in a different fashion–to the point that when we left, I had the strange woozy feeling I always get when stepping across a sacred boundary). We “plunked” our stones into the representation of the deifying and transforming waters of the Nile at the start. We also did the preliminary prayer to Antinous, and the prayers for Wepwawet, Hekate, and Ianus. We didn’t do the usual Foundation Day preface, but we did do the deification of Antinous via our version of Coming Forth By Day. We did the Prayer Against Persecution, and also the Antinoan Petition, in which everyone present offered prayers for themselves, and also many of our friends, allies, and co-religionists and community members were prayed for specifically and enthusiastically.
Then, we did several sacred dramas, including “Hadrian and Antinous” and “Foundation.” Then, I read the entirety (including the bits I haven’t posted yet) of “Nine Days Along the Nile,” and parts of it were extremely emotional for me as I read them–more so than I was expecting, actually, to the point I was having difficulty going on because I couldn’t read with all of the tears in my eyes. It was quite wonderful, though, and I’m glad I had a chance to do it. After that, Michael Sebastian Lvx also read the “Orphic Hymn to Antinous,” which was great to hear in a ritual context; we got all storax’d up during it, too. We had considered doing a few other things as well, but due to a variety of matters, we decided to start wrapping things up.
We mentioned one new Sanctus, Lou Reed, and then we ended things as usual, with the final words from Cicero, blessings, and V.S.L.M. Then, we shared the food offerings (in good Egyptian style, being that his deification was Egyptian in origin), which consisted of some lovely bread, and also a chocolate orange, which is now peer-corroborated gnosis as one of Antinous’ preferred offerings.
The ride home featured a lot of Lady GaGa, including the following song, which I’ve been listening to a lot this week, and which has some Antinoan resonances…gosh, I wonder why? (And, as the version here is a tribute to Jamey Rodemeyer Sanctus, it’s all the more appropriate for this occasion.)
As a few other notes for the past week:
1) I’ve been having what I can only call “psychic flashes,” starting on the first day of the Sacred Nights of Antinous. While I get these very occasionally, there have been multiple ones over the past week that have involved knowing the exact words someone will say, or premonitions (in the literal sense) of things that will not be pleasant to know/etc., often involving friends or co-religionists. I don’t know if it’s intensified by the season, or if this is just a coincidence. Anyway…
2) When I covered my image of Antinous at my home shrine in the last hour of the night before the Death of Antinous, I ended up having help in doing so from two unexpected sources: Freyr and some unspecified Celtic deities. I suspect that because of the Hibernian viewpoint of “Nine Days Along the Nile,” that might account for the latter…Of course, even though it was a sad occasion, I was grateful, pleased, and even slightly happy for the help I was given.
And, that’s about all I have to say about it for now…
If Foundation Day’s events do lend auspices for the coming year, then this next year should be fantastic…since last year’s was so bad and restrained, and the year that followed had some of the most difficult things I’ve experienced over the last few years, I can only assume that this next year will be much better in a great variety of ways.
I hope everyone else’s was good, and if you’d care to share your own observances, please feel free to do so in the comments below.
Ave Ave Antinoe–Haec Est Unde, Haec Est Unde, Haec Est Unde Vita Venit!