The cities of Sumer had been established for over a thousand years by the time the Epic of Gilgamesh was written, circa 2500BC, but they did not control all of the land. Most of it remained uncultivated and taming the wilderness, to make more commercially productive farmland, became important to the cities. That required an ever-increasing labour force, which could only be achieved through the enslavement of men.
Civilisation depends on the enslavement of men.
Many early civilisations were built on the enslavement of men, in the sense that we now understand it, but others were either not slave states or were only partially so. So how could the enslavement of men be effected, other than by force?
One answer is illustrated in two great tales: The Epic of Gilgamesh and Genesis. The enslavement of men to the city was brought about not through violence, but through love, or at least, lust.
The name of King Jan III Sobieski of Poland is one that every European should know and speak with pride.
In September 1683, the city of Vienna was near to collapse. For months, it had been under siege by the Islamic hordes of the Islamic Ottoman army. Every day now, starvation and surrender grew closer. The city had long since run out of horses and pets to eat and even rats were few and far between now.
Worse, the Viennese knew that other Europeans had been the instruments of their doom. Swiss Calvinists had begged the Turks to attack, so that they could sweep away Catholicism. It beggars belief that Christians could call down the hounds of Islamic hell on their fellow Europeans, but that they had, hoping, no doubt, to negotiate some deal, a reward for their treachery, that might spare them the scimitar or a lifetime of submission to the foul creed of Islam.
The city’s defenders, listening in its basements, could hear the scrape-scrap of pick and shovel as the enemy’s sappers undermined them. Soon they would plant another huge mine and blow up a section of the city’s curtain wall, breaching it and allowing the enemy in. Nobody in Vienna was under any illusion as to what would happen then: the men would be tortured and killed or enslaved, the women would be raped and killed or enslaved and the children slaughtered. The behaviour of triumphant Islamic armies was well known.
Today, the Twelfth of September, was the last. The government of the city knew it. The people knew it and worse, the enemy knew it. They were ready: their final attack was to come on the twelfth of the month. There was nothing left. Vienna would fall. Without a miracle, Vienna must fall, and with it, Europe.
So-called ‘homosexuality’, as it is known in the Anglo-West is almost non-existent outside it, despite efforts being continually made to revise history. That is because in all other places and at all other times, sex between males was strictly limited to sex between men and boys or older youths and younger boys, and sex between men and catamites who had permanently adopted the appearance and social role of women — mukhannathun — or today, ladyboys.
In the “homosocial” world of the early Ottoman Arab East, sexual symbolism was never far from the surface. Yet actual sexual intercourse between adult men was clearly perceived as an anomaly, linked either to violence (rape) or disease (ubnah).
However, sex between men and boys was practically universal in the Islamosphere, which for centuries was far more relaxed about this than the Christian world.
Sexual relations between men and boys in the early Ottoman Arab East were almost always conceived as involving an adult man (who stereotypically would be the “male” partner) and an adolescent boy (the “female”).
If the Popes believed that their God intended to keep them in control of Jerusalem, or indeed, in such high esteem at home, then they were to be rudely disabused. Central to Islam is the notion that the entire world not under its control is Dar al-Harb.
The Qu’ran or Koran is the codification of messages believed by Muslims to have been received by Mohammed from the Angel Gabriel. It says a territory may exist under two conditions: Dar al-Islam and Dar al-Harb. These mean, roughly, ‘Land of Submission’. and ‘Land of War’.
World War Three has been much talked about in the seven decades since World War Two ended. At that time, almost all of Europe and large parts of Asia were in ruins, scourged by years of brutal, mechanised, industrial war.
Since the beginning of that peace, war has raged incessantly throughout the world. It has never stopped. The killing, the butchery, the rapes, the genocides, the ethnic cleansings. Mass rapes, murders, enslavements. Whole cities destroyed, nations impoverished or obliterated.
Has World War Three begun?
As I write, war is raging in the Middle East, in Africa, in Asia. Why? If the end of World War Two heralded in an ‘era of peace’, then why is there so much war? And how fragile is that peace?
Hot cross buns. That’s what this article is about. So why do I have a picture of a Roman sculpture of a bull’s head here instead of a nice snap of some hot cross buns?
Hot cross buns actually originated in Assyria as a part of worship of the Moon Goddess Ishtar. At least that is the earliest record we have of them. The Egyptians continued the tradition of offering cakes to their Moon-Goddess Hathor. They decorated the cakes with bull’s horns, as the ox was the preferred sacrifice of the Goddess. The cakes, therefore, were symbolic of the sacrificed bull, whose flesh would be eaten by worshippers.
Hathor has been identified with Ishtar and Astarte, who was worshipped by King Solomon, as mentioned in the Old Testament (1 Kings 11, 2), and to whom he erected a temple or shrine in Jerusalem.