Mostly just about Gnostics, their links to ancient Egypt and the Mandaean of Southern Iraq who are a very interesting bunch indeed. They worship John the Baptist as the greatest of their prophets and refer to Jesus as Christ the Betrayer.Emperor Zombie said:go on....
Indeed, the severed head of John the Baptist, becomes the Templar's head Bamophet and the stolen head of Asathoth from within Rennes church.Inverurie Jones said:Mostly just about Gnostics, their links to ancient Egypt and the Mandaean of Southern Iraq who are a very interesting bunch indeed. They worship John the Baptist as the greatest of their prophets and refer to Jesus as Christ the Betrayer.
A full history of the Spear is included.Cover story: Judgment day: Is 'the spear that pierced Christ on the cross' genuine? Forensic scientists decide
This spear is said to have pierced Jesus on the cross, turned Hitler into the Antichrist, and inspired Picasso's greatest work. Now forensic science reveals the truth. Investigation by Richard Girling
For a meagre six hours, the management of Vienna's Kunsthistorisches Museum allows the lance of Longinus to be removed from its case. On its short journey to the Institute of Sciences and Technologies in Art, in nearby Schillerplatz, it is accompanied by two armed guards and a curator, Dr Franz Kirchweger, whose level of anxiety could not have been higher if he'd been looking down the barrel of a Luger. There are good reasons for all this. In a rare concession to science, the museum is allowing an English metallurgist to conduct some x-ray tests and take some biological swabs.
It is the swabbing that most inspires Dr Kirchweger's horror. Only when a hairdryer has been found, to burn off all traces of moisture left by the dampened cotton, does he allow the investigation to go ahead. Like a scenes-of-crime officer, the metallurgist dabs gently around the weapon's every nook and corner. Like a scenes-of-crime officer, he is looking for traces of blood. Rather less like any scenes-of-crime officer unaffected by drink or drugs, he has no thought for the due processes of law.
The blood he seeks is that of Jesus Christ.
To find the beginning of this story, we must turn to the gospel of St John. To bring it forward we must share the company of, among others, saints Longinus and Maurice, the emperors Constantine and Charlemagne, a clutch of scheming Dark Age kings, Napoleon, Richard Wagner, Pablo Picasso, Adolf Hitler and a waft of medieval warlords reincarnated as Nazis. After them will come General George 'blood-and-guts' Patton, a second-world-war US intelligence officer, an SS informer, Indiana Jones and a German U-boat captain heading for Antarctica.
It is a story that requires us to keep a tight hold on our credulity. Many of its protagonists are grail-seekers steeped in the occult, who want us to share their belief in magic. Some are imperial conmen. Others are cautious historians who believe the spear to be no older than the 8th century and see its journey to Vienna as little more than a process of hand-me-down through the Holy Roman and Hapsburg empires.
The legend has its root in St John's account of the crucifixion - specifically chapter 19, verses 31 to 36. To hasten the deaths of Jesus and the two crucified thieves, it was put to the Roman governor, Pilate, that their legs should be broken. This was done to the thieves but, when it came to Jesus, one of the Roman soldiers realised he was already dead. To prove it, he thrust his spear into Jesus's side and released a flow of blood and water (a phenomenon explained by the fact that blood after death separates into red cells and colourless plasma). Thus it happened that faith was kept in the Old Testament prediction that 'a bone of him [the Messiah] shall not be broken'.
Legend says that the soldier was a half-blind centurion called Longinus, who immediately fell to his knees and had his sight miraculously restored to him. Various accounts - some of them lurid and violent - exist of Longinus's subsequent life. Put simply, he seems to have retired from the army, become a monk, died under torture and become a saint. He does not convince everyone, however. Biblical accounts are inconsistent, and the Rev Sabine Baring Gould, in his magisterial Lives of the Saints, argued that the name derived from a Latinised misreading of the Greek word longche, meaning simply 'spear'. Be that as it may, various relics of the saint are scattered throughout Christendom, including a rival spear at St Peter's in the Vatican (for which no serious claim for authenticity is made), where there is also a fine statue of Longinus by Bernini.
The Spear Of Christ
Fri 13 Jun, 9:00 pm - 9:50 pm 50mins
It is said that whoever possesses the 'Spear of Destiny' holds the fate of the world in their hands. The Spear's status dates back to the beginning of Christendom when it was believed to have pierced the side of Jesus at his crucifixion. Subsequently, it became the obsession, and occasionally the possession, of kings and conquerors throughout the ages, from Kings Constantine and Charlemagne to Napoleon and Hitler.
For the first time in the history of the Spear, forensic scientists have been given access to the Spear and allowed to undertake a series of modern-day tests to verify the legends. With the help of historians and archaeologists this documentary special reveals the true story of this sacred artefact.
Doh. So, anyone see it? Anything surprising come to light?Fri 13 Jun, 9:00 pm - 9:50 pm
I saw it. Apparently, most probably, an early mediaeval fake, circa Emperor Charlemagne (800ad, or so).sjwk said:Doh. So, anyone see it? Anything surprising come to light?
Or is my cynical view that if it had, we wouldn't have had to wait for the program to hear about it correct?
My immediate thought here was "Oh yes it does!". Recently I saw a C4 docu about the Viking "Ivarr the Boneless": finding it interesting, I went to their website and found 4 or 5 detailed pages on the history and ideas covered in the prog.James Whitehead said:And telly doesn't do footnotes. :cross eye
damn I was hoping to say that!Emperor Zombie said:Isn't it on display in the Hapsburg's treasury at the Hofmuseum in Vienna?
http://www.geocities.com/Heartland/8303/spearan.gifThe Spear’s Powers
The exact nature and extent of the Spear’s powers remain ambiguous. However, even those with no formal magical training have been able to use it to produce world-altering effects. Aside from the Sphere of Influence, Adolf Hitler used the Spear’s power to summon a flight of real, tangible valkyries and, in April 1945, nearly succeeded in unleashing the devastation of Gotterdamerung onto the Earth and bringing about the end of the world. Others with no mystical inclination have nearly succeeded in destroying the Spectre, one of the DC Universe’s most powerful magical entities, by simply using the Spear as a melee weapon. The Sphere of Influence itself was an extremely formidable spell, capable of automatically controlling the minds and wills of the most powerful metahumans and sorcerers at tremendous distances without even requiring the conscious volition of the Spear’s wielder. It should be noted, however, that the Sphere was created by Hitler in partnership with a Japanese occultist called the Dragon King and bolstered with the power of the Holy Grail. A feat of such magnitude may not be possible without the assistance of a more competent magic-user.
Evidence strongly suggests that the Spear cannot be destroyed, at least not by any conventional means. The Spear has three times survived being accelerated to the escape velocity of the Earth (each time it was thrown into space), and its recent disposal by the Sentinels of Magic indicated that even being thrown into the sun did not actually destroy it (although it does obviously make it more difficult to retrieve).
Dr. Howard A. Buechner, M.D., professor of medicine at Tulane and then Louisiana State University, wrote two books on the spear. Buechner was a retired colonel with the U.S. Army who served in World War II and had written a book about the Dachau massacre. He claims he was contacted by a former U-boat submariner, the pseudonymous “Capt. Wilhelm Bernhart”, who claimed the spear currently on display in Vienna is a fake. "Bernhart" said the real spear was sent by Hitler to Antarctica along with other Nazi treasures, under the command of Col. Maximilian Hartmann. In 1979 Hartmann allegedly recovered the treasures. Bernhart presented Buechner with the log from this expedition as well as pictures of the objects recovered, claiming that after the Spear of Destiny was recovered, it was hidden somewhere in Europe by a Nazi secret society. After contacting most of the members of the alleged expedition and others involved, including Hitler Youth Leader Artur Axmann, Buechner became convinced the claims were true.