Icons are necessary for salvation, apparently

Cynthia

Member
If this is the case, American EO's certainly deviate from the typical in Europe. I've never seen an EO or RCC classroom either.

After Vatican II the RCC has moved towards English mass, which traditional Catholics seem to disapprove of.
Yes, it seems so.
So many Protestant worship services are really just new age encouragement with really loud music.
But I'm still looking...the pandemic has put a damper on congregations....
So I tried the Orthodox local churches. I plan to visit the Russian ones too.
I have visited RCC services and they are not in Latin at the one in Piedmont Oklahoma and Midwest City OK. But the incense choked me! I think the Orthodox churches here in the USA are closer to what is intended.
 

Rotgold

New member
I see nothing wrong with paintings that illustrate stories from the Bible, or even in stained glass windows, in a church for beautification, and as a visual reminder of what God has done for us. This would have been helpful hundreds of years ago, when most people could not read or write.
Same here!
I cannot see anything wong with it either.
Christianity is not Islam, where such paintings are forbidden.
 

Theophilos

New member
A liturgy means public reading of God's words to the saints, just like it was done in synagogues. I encourage you to go to an Eastern Orthodox liturgy and see for yourself how they do it.

Everything is sung and absolutely undiscernible to the people. No one has the slightest clue what the people in costumes are saying or actually doing. It's all choregraphed superstitious religious rites, bombarding the senses with sounds, smells and pictures, but no knowledge. No words of God are presented plainly to the saints like Christ himself read Isaiah in the synagogue.

EO may do it in Greek or old church Slavonic, and RCC may do it in Latin. If the undiscernible singing didn't envelop you in a fog of mystical ignorance, then doing it in dead languages certainly will. In case you thought it's just a byproduct of outdated traditions, ask yourself why these religions still discourage and for ages directly forbid their flocks to read the word of God and study it on their own.

If someone isn't born again of the Holy Spirit of God, but they are religious and superstitious, they will not gravitate to the experience barren churches of Reformed Protestantism. They will either go to entertainment driven megachurches like Hillsong, or go back to the original simulations of religiosity - EO and RCC. I can imagine what great shows they would put on back when Babylon was at its peak.
The liturgy is usually in English in the US. Pew books allow people to read the words and sing along.

The text of the liturgy is mainly Bible passages. Here is a text with Bible references:
 

rakovsky

Member
And they drew Him doing the hand of Sabazius. Utter blasphemy.


That's not the grand of Sabazios, because in the ikon the hand is not decorated with snakes or anything, and because the 4 fingers are all curled, not two of them straight. Here is the hand of Sabazios:
 

Septextura

Active member
That's not the grand of Sabazios, because in the ikon the hand is not decorated with snakes or anything, and because the 4 fingers are all curled, not two of them straight. Here is the hand of Sabazios:

You understand how religious syncretism works? That is the hand gesture of Sabazius, unmistakably. The snakes, pinecones and astrology symbols are also embedded on staffs, furniture, buildings, statues, paintings etc. You can't hand gesture a pinecone on your thumb when you give the Sabazios blessing.



The right hand, held in the auspicious gesture of the “Latin blessing” and associated with several symbols [cf. Bust of Sabazios], is a liturgical object that would have been fixed onto poles for processions, or destined for sanctuaries or domestic worship.





Fontana della pigna, Vatican, 1 century AD. Most of the statues relevant to the cult of Sabazios come from the 1-2 century AD.

 

rakovsky

Member
It would be interesting to see how far back Christians or Jews were using this hand symbol, if in fact this is the same hand sign. Sabazios is identified with the Biblical Adonai Sabaoth, the Lord Sabaoth. Perhaps 1st century Christian's were using this hand symbol.
 

Septextura

Active member
It would be interesting to see how far back Christians or Jews were using this hand symbol, if in fact this is the same hand sign. Sabazios is identified with the Biblical Adonai Sabaoth, the Lord Sabaoth. Perhaps 1st century Christian's were using this hand symbol.

I couldn't find any other explanation than Sabazios, who was a big deal, as all sky gods are. Jupiter, Zeus, Sabazios and YHWH Sabaoth are used interchangeably in syncretic cults. The hand gesture is used in Christ icons in the Pantokrator pose.

Sabazios - Jewish connection

The first Jews who settled in Rome were expelled in 139 BCE, along with Chaldaean astrologers by Cornelius Hispalus under a law which proscribed the propagation of the "corrupting" cult of "Jupiter Sabazius", according to the epitome of a lost book of Valerius Maximus:

Gnaeus Cornelius Hispalus, praetor peregrinus in the year of the consulate of Marcus Popilius Laenas and Lucius Calpurnius, ordered the astrologers by an edict to leave Rome and Italy within ten days, since by a fallacious interpretation of the stars they perturbed fickle and silly minds, thereby making profit out of their lies. The same praetor compelled the Jews, who attempted to infect the Roman custom with the cult of Jupiter Sabazius, to return to their homes.

By this it is conjectured that the Romans identified the Jewish YHVH Tzevaot ("sa-ba-oth", "of the Hosts") as Jove Sabazius.

This mistaken connection of Sabazios and Sabaos has often been repeated[citation needed]. In a similar vein, Plutarch maintained that the Jews worshipped Dionysus, and that the day of Sabbath was a festival of Sabazius. Plutarch also discusses the identification of the Jewish God with the "Egyptian" Typhon, an identification which he later rejects, however. The monotheistic Hypsistarians worshipped the Most High under this name, which may have been a form of the Jewish God.

Hypsistarians

The name Hypsistarioi first occurs in Gregory of Nazianzus (Orat., xviii, 5) and the name Hypsistianoi in Gregory of Nyssa (Contra Eunom., II), about 374 CE. Gregory of Nazianzus describes a syncretic Jewish-pagan group that does not worship idols, reveres lamps and fire, and worships the Almighty (Pantokrator). They keep Sabbath and adhere to dietary restrictions, but they do not circumcise. Gregory of Nyssa adds that they refer to God as the Highest (Hypsistos) or Almighty (Pantokrator). Gregory of Nazianzus' description of this cult occurs in his eulogy for his father, who was a Hypsistarian before his conversion to Christianity. This cult may have formed as the native Cappadocian cult of Zeus Sabazios integrated with the cult of Jahve Sabaoth[5] practiced by the numerous and intellectually predominant Jewish colonies, and that associations (sodalicia, thiasoi) of strict monotheists formed, who fraternized with the Jews, but who considered themselves free from the Law of Moses.
 

rakovsky

Member
Suzanne Berndt, in her essay on the hand gesture, writes:
Hans Peter L’Orange has in my opinion convincingly demonstrated that the gesture in general expressed the spoken
word and was a sign of logos during the Roman Empire and Late Antique periods, but the gesture had nothing to do with what was said or taught.12
...
All the bronze hands of Sabazios date to the Roman Imperial period and the earliest examples are from military camps, and it is plausible that the phenomenon of bronze hands sur-
mounted on poles was diffused throughout the Roman Empire to a large extent by Roman soldiers.27 The bronze hand from the military camp at Dangstetten, dating to the Augus-
tan period is the earliest-known example.28 Besides the Roman
military camps the hands are most frequently found in Italy, at
sites such as Pompeii.29 The distribution of the bronze hands
differs somewhat from where the cult is otherwise attested.30
It is noteworthy that no hands are known at all from Lydia,
from where we have a large attestation of the cult.31 There are
very few hands from the eastern part of the Mediterranean,
i.e. from Greece and Asia Minor. There are only three known
examples of hands from Asia Minor: a bronze hand from An-
talya/Attaleia in Pamphylia, a bronze hand said to be from
Caesarea in Cappadocia,32 and a third hand found on top of a
bone pin, possibly a hair pin, from Gordion in Phrygia.33 The
head of the pin was carved in the shape of a left hand and it
was found complete except for three digits that were broken
off: the thumb, and index and middle fingers (Figs. 3 & 4).
These three digits were originally extended, while the outer
two fingers were folded, which is the same gesture as that of
the Sabazios hands. It came from a 4th-century BC context
in the city mound, where it was found in a pit together with a
black-glazed fish plate and a coin of Lysimachus. We are not in
the position to identify it as part of the Sabazios cult, since the
hand carries none of the characteristic symbols, which may be
due to it being much earlier in date than the bronze hands.34
The bone pin is not unique as a few more examples with
hands are known, two from Sardinia, and one from Cyprus,
likewise interpreted as hair pins.
...
The gesture was later adopted by the Early Christians in their ico-
nography of Christ and his disciples and L’Orange (1953, 171–197, esp.
171–175, figs. 120–123) has demonstrated that the benedictio Latina
gesture originally indicated the spoken word.
Source: https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&sou...WMAJ6BAgDEAE&usg=AOvVaw2hHCJHXpIZ6NCkiYaaTpKV

She goes into more detail explaining evidence of how the hand gesture of benediction was used separately from the Sabazios cult.
 

Septextura

Active member
Suzanne Berndt, in her essay on the hand gesture, writes:
She goes into more detail explaining evidence of how the hand gesture of benediction was used separately from the Sabazios cult.

There is no other gesture like it. Nowhere anyone used that specific hand gesture without connection to these Phrygian cults.

It seems likely that the migrating Phrygians brought Sabazios with them when they settled in Anatolia in the early first millennium BCE, and that the god's origins are to be looked for in Macedonia and Thrace.

The Roman soldier salute was completely different.

The Roman salute (Italian: saluto romano) is a gesture in which the arm is fully extended, facing forward, with palm down and fingers touching. In some versions, the arm is raised upward at an angle; in others, it is held out parallel to the ground.

1606682650856.jpeg

Vatican's excuse is that Peter had a hand deformity and couldn't extend his last 2 fingers so he greeted by extending the other 3. In his honor they use that hand gesture. Of course it's made up since there's no historic evidence of Peter having such a thing. It's the hand of Sabazios and they know it. They have those bronze hands in their museum and a giant pinecone at the front gate.
 

rakovsky

Member
Berndt does a good job showing in her article that the hand sign that you are talking about was used in different contexts in ancient Rome. One context was the cult that you are talking about but the other context and meaning was a general gesture of speaking for oratorical purposes. She goes into much more depth in her article than what I posted from her article. She is not confusing it with the Roman military salute that you posted a photo of.
 

Septextura

Active member
Berndt does a good job showing in her article that the hand sign that you are talking about was used in different contexts in ancient Rome. One context was the cult that you are talking about but the other context and meaning was a general gesture of speaking for oratorical purposes. She goes into much more depth in her article than what I posted from her article. She is not confusing it with the Roman military salute that you posted a photo of.

Where's the evidence the gesture was used in non-religious occasions?
 

rakovsky

Member
Where's the evidence the gesture was used in non-religious occasions?
She goes into a lot of archaeological evidence in her article about different excavations and how the sites for the excavations were in different locations than the cult and she also quotes ancient writers saying that the meaning is for speaking purposes and oratory effect she writes a lot about this because she says that it hasn't been published enough about.
 

Septextura

Active member
She also quotes Scholars who have the same opinion as she does

This essay perfectly illustrates and supports my case. It's a gesture that came from pagan religions (Phrygia, Greece, Macedonia, Thrace). It's a religious gesture of blessing and only found in religious application. You can't limit it just to a single Roman cult, it's very old. But no Jewish connection. It's 100% pagan.

Eugene N. Lane, who has written extensively on the Sabazios cult, discussed the various symbols on the hands, but confined himself to describe the gesture as the benedictio Latina and that it originally was an orator’s gesture. He did not develop any theories what the gesture may have signifed in the cult, but declared that the field was open to speculation.

It's a gesture older than Rome itself, so calling it benedictio Latina is an anachronism. All the artefacts clearly show it's a religious thing pointing to Sabazios. Usually there's the Phrygian hat and pinecone thrown in the arrangements. No evidence provided about secular origin even though some cult members may have used it openly in public life. Certainly Christianity isn't using it to promote oratorship. It uses it as originally intended, to bless. I doubt Eastern Orthodox know the origin, but I'm sure Rome does.

Thank you for sharing that pdf, I'll use it in future exposés on religious syncretism.

I like Napoleon's Coat of Arms because he has both the hand on one scepter and a king wearing a Phrygian hat on the other. Is it Mithras or Sabazios sitting there? Roman eagle clawing the thunders of the sky god (Zeus, Sabazios, who knows).
Gartered_arms_of_Napoleon_III,_Emperor_of_the_French.png
 

rakovsky

Member
The article's thesis is that the hand sign has two different contexts and meanings in ancient Rome, and that one of those was not part of the cult.
 

rakovsky

Member
Well Theo, that looks a bit different than what Sept posted because in the drawing above, the fingers are crossed, unlike the ikon that Sept posted.
 

rakovsky

Member
Yes, the gesture in the icon appears to correspond to Figure 1 and represents the trinity.

Sign of the cross - Wikipedia
I'm not quite sure of that. An icle that goes with the drawing that I posted saysL
Fig. 1 – In Eastern Rite icons of Jesus, the Lord is shown holding His right hand in a particular way. The pinkie and ring fingers are touching the thumb, these three digits symbolizing the Three Persons of the Blessed Trinity. The other two fingers are held straight. Those two fingers represent the two natures of Jesus — Divine and human.
However, the pinkie and ring fingers aren't clearly touching the thumb in the Icon that Septextura posted.
But the ikon doesn't clearly show the Hand of Sabazios either, because the ikon's fingers are all curled, unlike the bronze Hand of Sabazios.
 
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