For your interest we have included below the `Abstracts' from:
Mithras Readers: an academic and religious journal of Greek, Roman
and Persian Studies. Vol.1 as well as the table of content.
Table of Content:
Section I: Academic papers
Continuity and Change in the Cult of Mithra, by Dr. Israel Campos
Méndez, University of Las Palmas.
Mithra and the warrior group
Mithra and the Iranian words and images
Introduction to Classes of Manichean, Mithrâism and Sufiyeh, by Dr.
Saloome Rostampoor, Islamic Azad University Islam shahr unite,
Entheos ho syros, polymathçs ho phoinix: Neoplatonist approaches to
religious practice in Iamblichus and Porphyry, by Sergio Knipe,
Kings College, Cambridge.
Mithraism and Alchemy by David Livingstone author of "The Dying God:
The Hidden History of Western Civilization."
Section 2: Arts
`For example Mithras' exhibition by Farangis Yegane, artist,
painter, and illustrator of the `Cat and Mice story'.
White steer with line of red light leading to the archaeological
Cautes and Cautopates at the fire-altar
Center part of blue triptych with bleeding steer
Mithraeum and ritual of initiation
Controversial grey triptych depicting the crucified Christ and the
bleeding sacrificed white steer
Stair with different ranks
Sketch of white steer
Section 3: Religious articles
Meeting Mithra by Guya Vichi, founder of Solar Centre and author
of "Wood, the Stone, the Fire" and "Thousand Doors of the Rainbow".
Ode To Mithra by Guya Vichi
Hymn to the Sun by Katherine Sutherland, Poet.
Mithras Liturgy with the Orphic hymns, by Payam Nabarz author
of "The Mysteries of Mithras The Pagan Belief That Shaped the
Christian World" and "The Persian 'Mar Nameh': The Zoroastrian 'Book
of the Snake' Omens and Calendar".
News & Reviews
Books, Films, Games.
Paperback: 104 pages
Publisher: Twin Serpents Ltd. (November 16, 2006)
Available from www.innerbookshop.co.uk or Amazon.
Section I: Academic papers
CONTINUITY AND CHANGE IN THE CULT OF MITHRA
by Dr. Israel Campos Méndez
University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.
Canary Island, Spain
After the rejection that Cumont's hypothesis received, the continuity
between the god Mithra
worshipped among the Persians and the god that presided over the
Mithraic mysteries, there
have been few attempts to seek the connection between both religious
traditions. We offer
with this article an approach focused on this relationship, referring
to special elements that do
not offer doubt on their clear western origin and that they played an
evident role in the daily
Mysteric practice. Starting from there, we pose the question: to what
extent were the own
Roman followers conscious of the Mithra's connections with the
Introduction to Classes of Manichean, Mithrāism and Sufiyeh
by Dr. Saloome Rostampoor, Islamic Azad University Islam shahr
From ancient Iran, there were groups and religions with special
customs and traditions.
These religions classified their followers into different special
groups which had their
own rules and according to these rules they aimed to train people to
reach what was
known as perfection. The customs and traditions existing in these
groups are very
important since besides the fact they introduced these religions in
aiming to understand
them and their influences on Iran in the context in which they
existed enables us to gain
a greater understanding of the country, its people and their beliefs.
Three important and influential religions in Iran are Manichean,
Sufism, which influenced Iranian society in their own period through
customs and ceremonies. Though these groups were viewed as different
in the time that
they appeared, there are considerable similarities in their
classifications. This article
aims to investigate these classifications in the three religions
mentioned in a short and
Entheos ho syros, polymathēs ho phoinix:
Neoplatonist approaches to religious practice in Iamblichus and
by Sergio Knipe, Kings College, Cambridge
Some honour philosophy more highly, as do Porphyry, Plotinus and many
philosophers; others honour more highly the priestly art, as do
Iamblichus, Syrianus, Proclus
and all the theurgists (hoi hieratikoi pantes).1
The aim of this article is to offer an overview of approaches to
religious practice in the
writings of the third-century philosophers Porphyry and Iamblichus,
with particular emphasis
on two key texts: On Abstinence from Killing Animals and On the
Mysteries of Egypt. Both
philosophers showed a profound interest in religious matters; both
followed Plotinus as the
most eminent representatives of the chief philosophical movement of
late antiquity.2 The
opening quote from Damascius conveys the sense in which Neoplatonism
Porphyry to Iamblichus and his followers (hoi hieratikoi pantes). As
most neatly drawn
historical lines, it runs the risk of oversimplifying matters.
Sensing the problem when citing
the same passage in her book, Anne Sheppard made sure to frame
Damascius' remarks with a
series of caveats warning the reader against any overestimation of
the increased importance
of ritual in later Neoplatonism.3 No doubt, not all successors of
Porphyry were equally keen
to put on priestly robes.4 Yet, despite Eusebius, few would question
distinction does in fact reflect a historical shift within
Neoplatonism. Central to this issue is
an understanding of the different place each philosopher assigned to
ritual practice and
theurgy in relation to religious self-realisation. Theurgy, in
particular, was assigned markedly
different roles: while Iamblichus regarded it as the very foundation
of his religious doctrine,
Porphyry criticised a number of its features and made it serve a more
limited purpose in the
path to spiritual development.5 The following discussion aims to shed
light on these diverging
approaches to religious practice, and to corroborate Damascius' claim.
MITHRAISM AND ALCHEMY
by David Livingstone author of "The Dying God: The Hidden History of
This article forms part of the research included in a work I have
entitled "The Dying God: The Hidden History of Western Civilization".
more information or to order my book, readers may visit my website at:
The alchemical process, according to Zosimus of Panopolis, the
foremost of the Hellenistic
alchemists, and who lived at the end of the third and beginning of
the fourth century A.D., "is
the Mithraic Mystery, the incommunicable Mystery." However,
alchemical teachings could
have no known association with Persian Zoroastrianism. Therefore,
what does this quote tell
us about the nature of Mithraism, and its connection to alchemy?
Although it contradicts the opinions of modern scholarship, Mithraism
in Roman times was
a cult regarded as preserving the wisdom of the "Magi", having been
founded originally by
Zoroaster, as early as before the Trojan War. This opinion was to
some extent promoted by
Franz Cumont, who basically single-handedly founded the study of
Mithraism, though today
scholars of the subject have essentially rejected his thesis. As
scholars maintain, there is very
little evidence to maintain that Mithraism derived from Persian
Zoroastrianism, but this was
not the basis of Cumont's theory.
Section 2: Arts
`For example Mithras ' exhibition by Farangis Yegane
Photos and article here are produced her by kind persmission of
Farangis Yegane. For further
information and to see the exhibition in full colour see website:
The second part of exhibition is due end of 2006.
FOR EXAMPLE MITHRAS
In dying and bleeding to death ritual transformation sets on: new
life thrives from death. In
unbounded chains of expectancies for deliverance, humanity proceeds
in harrowing spans.
The victim's death in religious rites such as in the mystery of the
Mithras cult (where the steer
is being ritually killed) as well as in the rites of the Abrahamic
religions Judaism, Christianity
and Islam, stands as a blood-sacrifice for expectancies of salvation.
In many blood-sacrifice
rituals the pretence is demonstrated that the "sacrificer" (the
slaughterer) is guiltless. Mostly
it's the priests of the specific religion, who, as agents of divine
decree, carry out the
slaughtering.. But also any one of the believers that are devout and
obedient to God
themselves can slaughter the animal sacrifice and perform the sacred
killing through the hand of man natural dying, is there not a
mistaken confusion? When we
recite for example the text from the Bible: "Verily, verily, I say
unto you. Except a corn of
wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die,
it bringeth forth much fruit."
(Jhn 12:24) aren't there two different forms of dying and two
different forms of coming
Section 3: Religious articles
ODE TO MITHRA BY GUYA VICHI
Oh Mithra, lord of the Light and of the infinite strength,
wake up, don't sleep the sleep of the just and of the Gods,
the raven has flown and after 500 years your faithful warriors are
waking up and, on behalf of
you, they are organizing armies of initiates.
In you great men and warriors reposed their lives, on behalf of you
they built altars and made
vows, but never they shed blood or violence.
You that are the light that enlightens every thing,
remove the darkness brought by fears and by unawareness,
let every living creature get a beneficial ray of yours, so that they
may feel you are a friend
and a supporter in the adversities of life.
Let every adversity be an incentive for your warriors,
to show you the courage and the faith they have reposed in your
HYMN TO THE SUN BY KATHERINE SUTHERLAND
Hail to you, mighty king of the sky,
ray-bearer, light-bringer from on high.
Your beams bring life upon the earth,
heralding dawn and each day's birth.
In the East you wake, the light of dawn,
spark of the day from night reborn,
constellations flee before your path,
summon us now to the morning hearth,
of heat which wakens the growing things,
people and animals, the birds that sing,
and stir your rays through the leaves of green,
where chlorophyll rises towards the unseen,
magnetism of your powerful crown,
in joy at the heat that is beating down,
upon and around us, to nurture all life,
and thaw the cold places, frozen in strife....
MITHRAS LITURGY WITH THE ORPHIC HYMNS. BY PAYAM NABARZ
The Mithras Liturgy from the Greek magical papyri (350 C.E.) is a
text written to be used by
a solo magician or sometimes by two magicians. Toward the end of the
section of the rite its reads: `But if you want to consult the oracle
by using a fellow initiate, so
that he hears only the things spoken together with you, let him be
pure with you for seven
days and abstain from meat etc.
' 1 what follows here is to adopt
this rite for modern use
into a format that can be used by large groups. The ritual dynamic of
two people performing a
ceremony to that of twenty or more is radically different. This
version created here has been
used by a group of twenty people before and can be used for a group
of a hundred plus too.
The below group ceremony is to mark the Autumn Equinox (Mehergan). It
is an adaptation
of Mithras Liturgy (in translation from the Greek magical papyri),
with Hymn Lines from
Santa Prisca Mithraeum in Rome, Mithra festival of Persian Mehergan
Mystical Hymns of Orpheus (in translation from Greek, as used in the
and some creative writing and reworking on my part.
The orphic hymns are used here as they fit well with the Platonic
cosmology and are very moving hymns. We know Mithraists used the
planetary symbols, but
due to lack of sources we don't what they said during their religious
rites. The Orphic hymns
are not included due to their historical use by Mithraists, but as a
good pragmatic substitute
for the lack of material. Indeed, other appropriate planetary hymns
could also be used in their
This stellar ceremony involves number of deities: Pales (mother
earth), Mercury, Venus,
Mars, Jupiter, Moon, Sun, Saturn, Mithras. This a rite of a magical
ascent from Earth through
the seven gates, that is each of the mentioned planetary spheres and
deities, and then to stellar
constellations of the Pleiades, theGreat Bear and their associated
deities, and finally to
Mithras, the Kosmokrater (mover of cosmos).
The Pleiades deities being seven goddesses: the Fates/virgins, or
seven Egyptian Hathors
(the Cow goddess) as shown here by asps. Great Bear deities being
seven gods: black bulls,
Pole Lords of heaven. These seven male and seven female deities face
each other forming a
kind of astral choir and corridor for the last part of ascent leading
to the highest gate.
News & Reviews
-Lord of the Cosmos: Mithras, Paul, And the Gospel of Mark by Michael
-The Religion of the Mithras Cult in the Roman Empire: Mysteries of
the Unconquered Sun by Roger Beck
-The Mysteries of Mithras: The Pagan Belief That Shaped the Christian
World by Payam Nabarz
-Mithras Liturgy: Text, Translation, & Commentary (Studies & Texts in
Antiquity & Christianity, 18) by Hans Dieter Betz
-The Archaeology of Religious Hatred in the Roman and Early Medieval
-The Persian `Mar Nameh': The Zoroastrian `Book of the Snake' Omens
and Calendar and The Old Iranian Calendar by Payam Nabarz, S. H.
-Mehrparasti-dar iran, hend va rom by Saloome Rostampoor
-Mehr o Atash by Mehrdad Avesta, Compiler: Behrooz Imani.
-Threskia: Tradition of the Greek Mysteries by Evangelos Rigakis
-Traditions of the Magi: Zoroastrianism in Greek and Latin Literature
(Religions in the Graeco-Roman World S.) by Albert F. de Jong.
-Films Rome The Complete First Series.