Posted by: aediculaantinoi | May 25, 2015

Achilleus and Antinous 2015

Achilleus to Antinous: I give you my shield, fashioned by Hephaistos.

Antinous: Hail and thanks to you, Achilleus, son of Thetis and Peleus, the hero of the Achaeans!

Because of you, I will be foremost among the heroes on Ogygia, the isle of the blessed!

I shall be hymned by the Muses when Thetis conducts them at my mourning.
I shall have descendants in Epirus, including Alexander through Olympias.
I shall have as my mates Medea in Elysium and Helen on Ogygia.
I shall be the father of Pyrrhus Neoptolemus and of Euphorion.
I shall have ambrosia-anointed skin hardened in fire and the River Styx.
I shall be fostered by Chiron and fed on the marrow of lions, bears, and boars
I shall have renown in poetry from Homer onwards.
I shall be the avenger of the deaths of Patroklos and Antilochus.
I shall be given a shrine at Tryo and on the isle of Leuke.
I shall be a song of the rage of Lyssa when battle is waged.
I shall be the hidden one raised in shadows within the quarters of women.
I shall be the memory of those fallen in battle, and the emblem of victory for nations.

Hail and thanks to you, Achilleus!

Hail and thanks to you, Antinous!

Posted by: aediculaantinoi | May 23, 2015

Milestones, Major and Minor…

So, my birthday yesterday was quite lovely!

I was able to see many folks (including several Many Gods West presenters as well as old friends and co-religionists–though the overlap in those categories is almost total in early every case!), have some lovely food–including sushi and the ol’ standard “liminality burger” (!?!)–buy some fun things, and travel down and back was actually quite favored by Hermes, Hanuman, Lugus, and Antinous, too, at several points. ;)

Thank you to all who helped make it a memorable and enjoyable occasion!

Hwever, something else happened of major significance: Ireland legalized same-sex marriage by referendum! Given that homosexuality was only legalized there in the early 1990s, that’s quite a major leap to have occurred in “W/Hol(l)y Catholic Ireland.”

The spirits of some Middle Irish Queer Women, and Cú Chulainn and Fer Diad, are probably having a party tonight in honor of this, as well they should.

Earlier today, the Green Egg Radio podcast had Crystal Blanton, Taylor Ellwood, Clio Ajana, Lilith Dorsey, Shauna Aura Knight, and myself on. We were ostensibly there to talk about Bringing Race to the Table, but we actually didn’t talk much about the book at all, and the whole thing was a bit *weird* (even apart from some of the technical oddities). If you have a listen, perhaps I’ll say more in comments about it if any of you point out how it went a bit strangely.

So, yeah. Stuff. ;)

Posted by: aediculaantinoi | May 22, 2015

The Dioskouroi and Antinous 2015

The Dioskouroi to Antinous: I give you the spear, the cestus, and my pilos, that you may excel at hunting, at boxing, and in horsemanship.

Antinous: Hail and thanks to you, Dioskouroi, two brothers and sons of Zeus, Leda, and Tyndareus!

Because of you, I will be given temples in Sparta, Athens, and Rome!

I will be a patron of the Equites in Italy.
I will be honored with the theoxenia in many lands.
I will be symbolized by the dokana.
I will have solidarity with Polydeukes as a brother.
I will give my divinity to Hadrian in loyal love.
I will have an epiphany at Juturna’s font for victory at Lake Regillus.
I will be known as the origins of the youthful Kouroi and the dancing Kouretes.
I will be honored as the Kabeiroi in Samothrace’s mysteries.
I will be given inscriptions at Lavinium.
I will be remembered in stars like the constellation Gemini.

Hail and thanks to you, Dioskouroi!

Hail and thanks to you, Antinous!

Posted by: aediculaantinoi | May 22, 2015

The Daimon Antinous 2015

The Daimon to Antinous: I give you the serpent, that you may travel in any realm.

Antinous: Hail and thanks to you, O Daimon, intermediary for Gods and mortals!

Because of you, I will be active in the lives of many upon the earth!

I will be the numen which inhabits sacred images.
I will be the sudden light in a forest glade.
I will be the unexpected breeze upon the mountainside.
I will be the genius for some who breathe and walk as humans.
I will be the Iove for men who worship me.
I will be the Iuno for women who are devoted to me.
I will be the Ianus for those of other genders who adore me.
I will be the voice from oracles and a whisperer in dreams.
I will be the warmth within the breast perceived during ceremonies.
I will be the engenderer of love for those who call upon me.
I will be the spirit of myself to and in others that are not myself.

Hail and thanks to you, O Daimon!

Hail and thanks to you, Antinous!

Posted by: aediculaantinoi | May 22, 2015

Canis Erigoneius 2015

[“Erigone” by Halldora; click on the photo to be taken to Galina Krasskova’s site where this image is available as a prayer card!]

The first days of the period of Gemini were always confusing for Maira, for she did not know whether she was rising or falling, and in fact who she was at all.

On some years, when those days arrived, she thought she was a nymph, a daughter of Atlas, who married Tegeates the son of wolfish Lykaon in Arcadia. Their land had been cursed by Apollon and Artemis for not giving refuge to Leto when she had come there before the birth of the twins. Her and her husband were loyal in propitiating them, however, and for this she became placed in the stars as Sirius.

On other years, when those same days came about, she thought she was a dog. She had been the hound of Erigone, the daughter of Ikarios, when Dionysos came to teach mortals the art of making wine. She died when her mistress hung herself in grief over her father’s murder after her keen-scented nose had lead her mistress to the body.

She was not the first dog to die, a nymph hung up like Hekate in service to Artemis in Ephesus. Some said that it was Orion’s hound who became Sirius, after he had gone astray of Artemis as well. She wasn’t sure any more whether she was hound or star, bitch or dog, nymph or human, Athenian or Arcadian…

And she found it even more confusing that the Egyptians reckoned the rising of the Nile by her own heliacal rising, as would so many others across the world.

But it was Ovid the poet who made her the most confused, for her natural rising was not when he had said it was, and none could account for it.

Her madness, though, seemed to be justified by how things played out in islands far off and peninsulas far distant around the days of her purported rising.

For on the day of her actual rising, a saint who was accused of being a werewolf–though, unlike Lykaon, had committed no crime–was celebrated in Cornwall under St. Rumon’s name, and in Brittany as St. Rónán.

The day which Ovid spoke of, however, was another occasion when another St. Rónán–who had made a geilt of Suibhne as easily as Dionysos drove the Athenians mad after Ikarios’ death–was celebrated instead.

Was it any wonder that so many names in common, so many strange occurrences, retributions, wolves, deaths, and dogs swirled together into one confusing jumble for Maira?

How much simpler would it have been to instead be the spirit of Scintillica Canis Mirabilis, the lapdog of the Emperor Hadrian’s wife Sabina, who had made Antinous laugh many times with her tricks…

But, Scintillica, even at her most wondrous, did not get a star of her own.

Posted by: aediculaantinoi | May 21, 2015

Agonalia: Vediovis 2015

Vediovis coin

One thing that an Augur does not ignore is lightning. No matter the number, color, or patterns of birds that might appear within the lines of the lituus otherwise, a flash of lightning trumps all else. The Etruscan discipline as it was taught by Tages himself emphasized this, as all Augurs knew from ancient times right down to the present.

But even in a dream, lightning is significant. The Augur’s dreams had been full of lightning recently.

The Augur had only been in his post for a few years, and was yet the youngest in the collegium, but he wasn’t sure if it was perhaps time for a change of some sort, a shifting of priorities to something more political, or perhaps even something simpler and not remotely political. It wasn’t clear, but his trajectory as a potential man of distinction did not seem as clear or certain now as it had to him previously.

It was night in the dream–perhaps blacker than usual, both moonless and starless–and he was resting on a couch in his own home. Suddenly, as if the rage of Summanus had been aroused, a blue flash of lightning shot into the house and began to crumble the roof. The Augur’s first thought was that this must have been what the mother of Bacchus saw when Jupiter revealed himself to her in his full glory…but, the thought was cut short by a second bolt of blue lightning, hitting the same location and destroying more of the house.

The Augur awoke screaming from the dream, and the very thought of it had disturbed him for weeks.

At last, he began to consult what references there were on the matter, taking into account that it was in a dream rather than in waking life, and that it had to be handled more delicately accordingly, the interpretation of it less certain than it might have been if it had occurred where others could see and hear it.

He wondered which of the Novensiles might have been responsible for sending him the dream. Even the eldest of the Augurs in the collegium could not give him a satisfactory answer, and so they suggested he speak with an even older Augur who had been retired from the collegium for some decades, of whose expertise they availed themselves occasionally.

The Augur came to his house–a bit shabby with neglect, but once clearly quite beautiful–and was dismayed to see the fog had not yet broken in the midday sun. He found the elderly Augur sitting in his atrium with one of his slaves, simply staring into space.

The Augur had not heard that the old man was blind.

“Who is that?” he asked as his slave touched him on the shoulder.

The Augur identified himself, and was told to take a seat and was offered water.

The Augur outlined his difficulties, and described his dream to the old man.

“Ahh…yes, I know of what you speak. It is an uncertain dream, much clouded in mystery. Bring me my astragaloi!”

The slave signaled to another slave, who brought a small leather pouch and a wooden tray. The old man shook the pouch and then emptied its contents of knucklebones onto the tray, and felt the surface of each one as it lay in the pattern on the tray.

“Yes…very unusual, this.”

“What is it?” the Augur asked.

“I believe the God that sent the lightning in your dream is Vediovis.”


“Yes, the un-Jupiter. If Iove is the lord of lighting in the heavens, then Vediovis is his counterpart in the dark grey skies of the underworld.”

“I know little of him.”

“So few do these days…so few…” The old man seemed on the verge of a great chasm of reminiscence and regret, but he pulled himself from its precipice and continued. “He is one of the oldest of the Gods, and yet appears as eternally youthful. He is like Apollo in the underworld, bringing light and sun to those regions of shadow, and yet his light is not of the sun. And, he is also like Aesculapius, for he has the ability to heal miraculously. Unfortunately…”

“What do you mean? Go on, please.”

“Vediovis does not heal gently, nor with salves and sacrifices, sweet hymns and balms and the pleasures of the theatre. He heals by destroying, often utterly.”

“I don’t understand.”

“He is offered a she-goat on the Agonalia of May, but not simply because it is his due–it is so that he does not instead require a human sacrifice.”

“So, what are you saying?”

“If you can offer the goat today, make sure it is done. If you are unable to do so, then I’m afraid the offering he shall be granted, perhaps even by lightning’s strike, is your own life.”

“Is this true?”

“No one knows whether any augury is true until it comes to pass; we are only given warnings, for the will of the Gods is good when it is known, no matter what we humans might think of it. You may proceed as I have suggested, or take your chances, but do not be upset if things come to pass as I have warned and you have done nothing to avert it.”

“Is that all?”

“No, there is more.” The old man picked up the astragaloi once again and dropped them after shaking them in his own hand, and felt their surfaces once again. “Vediovis can bring one into the underworld, but he can also free one from its clutches if one has fallen into it in some fashion by mistake.”

“Who falls into the underworld by mistake?”

“You’ve heard of Orpheus, I’m certain, as well as Ulysses and so many others…even Hercules found himself there for a time. Perhaps you are there and simply do not realize it, and this lightning strike shall be your stoke of deliverance.”

“This is a strange tiding indeed!”

“Quite. There have been many philosophers who have asked whether or not we may actually be dead in this life, and only death itself delivers us to our true lives.”

The Augur stood and paced for a moment, looking down, shaking his head. The old man listened to his barely audible footsteps and smiled, nodding, and staring into the space before him with his clouded eyes.

“Go now–if before sunset you make the sacrifice, all shall be well; if after sunset, then let it be a black nanny goat that is the victim. But do not let your head rest upon a bed until it is done.”

“Very well. Thank you.”

The Augur was not sure what to believe, or how to proceed.

As he opened the door to leave, a clap of thunder sounded in the distance, as the sky had clouded over and it began to rain lightly.

The old man simply smiled.

Posted by: aediculaantinoi | May 21, 2015

Epiphany of Paneros 2015

[As you know, I’ve been writing an aretalogy this year in many parts that is somewhat syncretistic, but not exclusively. When it comes to various goddesses, Antinous is not syncretized to them, so instead he speaks blessings to them and they bless him in return. But, that is only two of three “groups” or types of these installments. The third type is the ones in which deities, heroes, and so forth who became gods or were deified/heroized after Antinous propitiate him and receive his blessings. It is fitting, therefore, for this to be the first example of such that I give online; there will be others in the final book that I won’t have given previously!]

Paneros to Antinous: Praise to you, and Thanks for your blessings, Antinous, Father and Grandfather of the Tetrad++!

Antinous: Hail, Thanks, and Praise to you, Paneros!

For you, I shall lend my spear, which shall become your sword for the shattering of bonds.
For you, I grant the might to break chains and free Eros from imprisonment.
For you, I call forth the waters of the Styx in which you drowned to make you more divine.
For you, I deem that you shall have the perfection of love in Paneris.
For you, I will be an ally to all whose gender broadens and breaks the binary.
For you, I sing praises at the shrine of your image.

Hail, Thanks, and Praise to you, Paneros, All-Love amongst the Deities and in the Cosmos!

Paneros: Hail, Thanks, and Praise to you, Antinous!

Posted by: aediculaantinoi | May 20, 2015

Bast Anthology

A new publication was just released, which I have a piece in; so, as is my custom, I am announcing it here since I have received my copy of it.

The Queen of the Sky Who Rules Over All the Gods: A Devotional Anthology in Honor of Bast is now out, and contains one poem by me: “O Fragrant Feline,” which I’d not read in a long time when I received the book the other day, and surprised me because–it turns out!–also features Anubis! (They are married, you know!) You can get your copy here.

I am, of course, happy to do this work in honor of a great and much-respected Goddess, and am always happy to see the devotional efforts of others come into communal manifestation in this way. However, I also feel a bit displeased with myself in all this, and I’ll tell you why…several reasons, actually.

1) In most of the BA devotional anthologies, I’ve had multiple pieces–a few poems, or a poem and an essay, or even a few essays plus a poem. This is the first, I think, where I’ve only had one poem. (There have been a few in which I’ve had nothing, and not always for lack of trying…which is another story.)

2) Often, these occasions provide a bit of a challenge for me: can I find a way to connect the divine honorand with Antinous in some fashion–or, failing him, Hadrian or Sabina or someone else? It hasn’t always worked, but it often forces me to push myself in usefully creative ways, which is its own reward. I’ve had no problem doing this with any and every Greek, Roman, or Egyptian deity thus far honored by BA’s anthologies. I know of no direct connections between Bast, Antinous, Hadrian, or Sabina…and yet, with time and a bit of inspiration, I probably could have connected Sabina and Bast. I regret not being able to do that.

In the coming months, as a few more anthologies from BA are released with further work by me in them, I’ll have more to say on some of these matters. But for now, the book is available, so go get it!

Posted by: aediculaantinoi | May 19, 2015

Bendideia 2015

Bendis statue

The Baptai was not sure what situation would be preferable.

In Rome, on the night of the Bendideia, a solitary person climbing each of the Seven Hills in turn with a torch of an evening might be unusual, but nothing to worry over…it wasn’t as if an insurrection would happen because of it. There was something exciting, and almost scandalous, about celebrating a major holy day amidst many others who had no idea that it was even a major holy day.

In Athens, on the other hand, at least everyone knew what day it was, and who was being honored, even if they did not partake themselves. The Thracian faction had their own celebration–the music was always better, the revels more intense afterwards, and the liquid spirits more potent–but the Greeks had their observance as well, unusual and rather somber though it was.

By torchlight, as the shadows were lengthening into darkness, the Baptai remembered back to the last time Athens had felt their own footfalls. It was not that the ritual was more intense, or that the Goddess was more present in the ceremonies, or even that a particular insight had dawned because of any of it; it was the conversations on the street by the passers-by that both surprised, amused, and occasionally appalled them.

The horseback relay of the torches slowed through Brauron, and the crowd moving along with the horses could be heard easily.

“It’s what the Thracians call Artemis,” someone said.

“But then what are the torches for?” someone else asked.

“For the Thracians, Artemis is the torchbearer for Persephone and Demeter.”

“I thought that was Hekate?” the other then inquired further.

“For the Thracians, Hekate, Artemis, and Bendis are one.”

What surprised the Baptai was not that this Athenian had thought any of this through, but that the tone with which these things were stated–in front of several Thracians, no less!–made it sound as if everyone knows that and that there isn’t any possible way it could be a questionable interpretation. Heavens forfend that the confused Athenian or the one who thought this was all simple might ask the Thracian priests and people processing around them at that moment…

The ideas of people in other parts of the city were even more outrageous.

“Bendis invented horses: the Thracians say she is Poseidon castrated.”

“Bendis is the head of the Bassarids, and is Dionysos in the clothes of a woman with a fox-fur hat.”

“The Thracians drink horse piss because it is the wine of Bendis.”

“When Orpheus was kind of Thrace, he brought a torch and a sword to Bendis so that he might be made a eunuch after the death of Eurydike–she is Cybele for the Thracians.”

What is this Greek fascination with the luridness of castration, bodily fluids, and transvestism? What a strange culture, the Baptai thought on the fourth Hill.

As the Caelian Hill’s summit was reached and the Baptai’s descent began, a woman halted the procession of one.

“You’re one of those Thracian priests, aren’t you?”

“I am of the Baptai, yes,” the Baptai replied.

“Can’t you tell my future by the Ephesia Grammata?”

“No, that would be the Megabyzoi from Ephesus.”

“But Ephesus is in Thrace, isn’t it?”

The Romans did not know geography outside of the pomerium very well, much less in other provinces, the Baptai thought.

“No, it isn’t.”

“Well, can you tell my future anyway?”

“It’s the sacred festival of the Goddess Bendis today.”

“So, can you tell my future?”

“If you wish to make a sacrificial offering to the Goddess Bendis and would join my procession, then perhaps later divination could be performed on your behalf.”

The Roman woman held out a few obols.

“No, don’t have time–can’t you just take these and tell my future for me?”

The Baptai decided to have a bit of fun at the Roman woman’s expense.

“You have…children?”


“Do you know where they are at present?”

“No, I don’t–why? What’s wrong?”

“You don’t know…Oh, a pity, then.”

The woman looked horrified, and raised the hem of her skirt to run back to her home. The Baptai had not lied–it was sad that a woman so ignorant and disrespectful to other people’s traditions did not know the whereabouts and activities of her children at that moment.

The crescent moon appeared in the sky, and the seventh Hill was crested by the Baptai. It was not a mounted torchlight procession and relay race, but it would do for the occasion. The auspices earlier had been favorable, and now all that would remain was the final kindling of the sacrificial flame in the insula where the other Baptai lived together from the torch in the procession. It was sad that they had not returned from their errands abroad by this festival, though the Goddess Herself shined down on them as equally as on the Baptai who had just done the circuit of the city’s holy mountains in the forms of hills.

Posted by: aediculaantinoi | May 18, 2015

The Fit Has Hit The Shan…

So, bad news, folks…and no, I’m sorry to say this is neither Glykonalia nor Boukoklepteia, this is not fiction or a joke or a purposeful lie, and this is most certainly not in the “Humor” category.

I had an eye appointment today, and my vision tested the worst it ever has; I have had trouble reading the last few days.

My bad right eye is, well, still bad.

My “good” left eye, though, even though it is not as bad as the right, is having other problems, including swelling.

This meant that I had two injections today, bringing the grand total I’ve now had in my eyes to 3 on the left and 4 on the right.

But, I am also going to need surgery now. The doctor would like to get me in as early as the 9th of June, but as I’ll have 1.5 weeks of the quarter left at that point, the 9th is a day in one of my classes for student presentations involving their final grades, and I can’t be out-of-commission for that nor what is after it, I’m going to see if the 23rd (with the quarter and grading being over at that stage) will be possible instead.

I am going to speak with a local Mystes (who has a variable work schedule) to see if she can accompany me to the surgery, not only in the event of something bad happening, but also so that she can be the custodian of the Book of Books while they are doing horrific things to my unconscious body, as I expect them to be fuck-heads about my religious practices and the physical things which accompany them.

Needless to say, I am not pleased with this turn of events. I am going to have to try and get a lot done between now and then, in the event that something goes horribly wrong and leaves me blind.

So, if ever you have curried the favor of any Deities of healing, of eye health, and so forth, or have connections to Antinous, Qadesh, or Panprosdexia (amongst others), start praying now, and do so especially when I have the surgery. I will update when I get the appointment and other preparations, certainly.

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