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A shepherd (Jesus? Tammuz? Other?) with his flock.

Tammuz and Jesus: More Than a Distant Connection?

Christianity has its origins in a Middle Eastern religion, Judaism, so it is little surprise that there are some residual similarities between Christian theological thought and ancient Middle Eastern...
Left: The temple of Ain Dara before. Right: The temple after its recent destruction.

3,000-Year-Old Ain Dara Temple in Syria Reduced to Rubble by Turkish Airstrikes

The Syro-Hittite temple of Ain Dara built in the 1 st millennium BC boasted intricate stone sculptures of lions and sphinxes, elaborately decorated walls with geometric designs, floral patterns,...
Child standing on the edge of a river

‘River God’ in Ghana Stops Menstruating Girls from Crossing a River to Get to School

Local authorities in a central district of Ghana have forbidden girls from crossing a river while menstruating due to a belief that the river god does not like it. The girls now claim to have missed...
Healing Temple of Aesculapius (Asklepios) by Robert Thom

A Dream Cure? The Effective Healing Power of Dream Incubation in Ancient Greece

In the ancient world, many cultures built elaborate temple complexes dedicated to their healer gods - Imhotep in Egypt and Asklepios in Greece for example. These gods were recognized as having the...
Ramesses III smites his enemies. Design by Anand Balaji.

Ramesses III, The Final Warrior Pharaoh: Devastating Sea Peoples and Egypt’s Finest Hour—Part II

The vile and vicious juggernaut of the Sea Peoples had laid waste to several cultures and had dispersed vast populations in their wake. When they were done pillaging and ravaging Levantine empires,...
A painted relief shows Ramesses III making offerings to the gods in the sanctuary of the temple of Khonsu at Karnak. Design by Anand Balaji.

Ramesses III, The Final Warrior Pharaoh: Savior of Egypt in Her Darkest Hour—Part I

The reign of Ramesses III proved to be unprecedented in more ways than one. While most of his predecessors often had to thwart the designs of Egypt’s enemies one at a time, he had to quell invasion...
Sealings from the archive of Doliche.

Discovery of 1,000 Sealings Reveals an Ancient City’s Devotion to the Graeco-Roman Pantheon

Classical scholars from the Cluster of Excellence "Religion and Politics" of the University of Münster discovered a large number of sealings in south-east Turkey. "This unique group of artifacts...
Fire and Water Hands

The Relationship that Started it All and Changed the World: The Yin Yang & Diagram of the Supreme Ultimate

Chinese mythology and cosmology rest on the concept that the universe is shaped and maintained by two fundamental forces called yin and yang. They are opposite yet complementary forces that interact...
Ancient Egyptian painted relief showing foot and toes. Design by Anand Balaji.

Game of Toes in Amarna: Missing Body Parts and Funerary Practices of King and Commoner

Pharaoh Akhenaten was the subject of great controversy when he lived; and this did not cease after he died. If anything, his memory has both troubled and impressed people down to this day. Be it his...
Ancient Egyptian relief. Design by Anand Balaji.

Understanding the Monotheism of Akhenaten: Solar Disc Thrust into Eternal Darkness–Part II

At first glance it appears as though Pharaoh Akhenaten is someone whom one would describe as a textbook monotheist, but are we missing the plot? Apart from Amun (and later, Osiris) the king doesn’t...
A bust of Pharaoh Akhenaten. Design by Anand Balaji.

Understanding the Monotheism of Akhenaten: Decay of a Dream and the Final Curtain Call–Part I

Pharaoh Akhenaten has been revered and reviled in equal measure for unleashing his religious policy of one god, the Aten sun disc. But, was the king a monotheist in letter and spirit – one who...
A model of the Ark of the Covenant from biblical description

The Missing Contents of the Ark of the Covenant: What Was Inside the Ark? (HINT: Not just the 10 Commandments)

Whenever the subject of ancient technology comes up, most people have been conditioned by spectacular movies and TV shows to think right away about the Ark of the Covenant . Some say it was a...
A depiction of Quetzalcoatl as a feathered serpent in Teotihuacan

The Rise of Quetzalcoatl: From Plumed Serpent to Creator God

Quetzalcoatl was one of the most important gods in the ancient Mesoamerican pantheon. Its iconic appearance is identified in the name of this god. Quetzalcoatl is a combination of two Nahuatl (the...
Osiris, Egyptian God of the Underworld

The Story of Osiris: How the First Ruler of Egypt Became God of the Underworld

Osiris was one of the most prominent gods in the ancient Egyptian pantheon. This prominent deity was a member of the Ennead (known also as the Great Ennead and the Ennead of Heliopolis), a group of...
A statue of a Kitchen God - CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 with flames

Torn Apart & Together Again in Death: Tragic Legends of the Kitchen Gods

For many of us, the kitchen is very important place. Apart from its role as a place for family members to gather, the kitchen often represents the warmth, happiness and harmony within the family...
Detail of a statue of Ganesha.

Ganesha: How He Lost… And Gained His Head

“Lord Ganesh of curved elephant trunk and huge body, Whose brilliance is equal to billions of suns in intensity, Always removes all obstacles from my endeavours truly...” ― Munindra Misra, Chants of...

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