At some point, most of us have dreamed of riding across the Sahara Desert and stumbling across an ancient tomb filled with national treasures and glittering gems. If you haven’t, then you’ve probably never seen an Indiana Jones movie. Paul Koudounaris, the self-proclaimed ‘Indiana Bones’, certainly takes that explorer’s vision to heart. When he’s not digging up the dirt on charnel houses, the Los Angeles-based art historian and photographer is tracking down the remains of saints scattered around the world.
Browsing ATI By religion
The Colorful Canopies Of Seoul, South Korea
Last week, a technicolor typhoon tore across Asia in honor of Buddha’s birthday. At approximately 25-centuries old, the enlightened one’s special day is typically celebrated on the full moon of May and is commemorated by thousands upon thousands of lanterns spilling throughout the streets. Why lanterns? They symbolize the wisdom that Buddha brought to the world. For more glimpses of the celebrations in Seoul, My Modern Met has an illuminating collection of images.
For context’s sake, this is from a 16th century German bible.
What a dazzling destination.
Five Utterly Insane Cults: Eckankar
Founded in Minnesota in 1965, the Eckankar movement promotes the idea that one can separate their soul from their body and experience the “Light and Sound” of God by journeying beyond the mortal form.
The group has been heavily criticized for the fact that nearly all of founder Paul Twichell’s works have been plagiarized from other spiritual material or blatantly fabricated. The group has also come under fire for the fact that the primary spiritual leader is also the CEO of the company that sells the founder’s materials for profit.
Utterly Insane Cults: Raëlism
Pope Formosus (891-896)
While Formosus’ pontifical reign is noted more for its brevity than its breadth, it’s the absolute insanity that defined his afterlife that makes him one of the world’s craziest popes. A year following his death, the rather batty Pope Stephen VI ordered Formosus’ desiccated body to be exhumed and put on trial. Known as the Cadaver Synod, Formosus’ corpse was dressed in papal vestments and convicted accordingly.In the ruling, it was declared that Formosus was unworthy of the pontificate, and all acts and measures made under his papacy were declared null and void. Such was the case for three of his fingers, as they had been used in various “illegitimate” consecrations. So loathsome was Formosus’ body that clerics had it thrust into the River Tiber, only to be exhumed later by a monk and put onto trial–again–by Sergius III. This time, Formosus’ punishment was a beheading.