| 14 Mar 2003 @ 17:22|
By Holland Cotter New York Times February 25, 2003
Iraq has hundreds of thousands of archaeological sites. Some 10,000 have been identified, but only a fraction have been explored. Any of them could change what we know about human history, as past excavations have done. Some have already revealed the world's earliest known villages and cities and the first examples of writing.
The country is also one of the prime centers of Islamic art and culture. It is home to some of the earliest surviving examples of Islamic architecture -- the Great Mosque at Samarra and the desert palace of Ukhaidar -- and it is also a magnet for religious pilgrimage. The tombs of Imam Ali and his son Husein, founders of the Shiite branch of Islam, at Najaf and Karbala, are two of the most revered in the Muslim world.
During the Persian Gulf war in 1991 at least one major archaeological monument, the colossal ziggurat of Ur, was bombed. Shock from explosions damaged fragile structures like the great brick vault at Ctesiphon, and the 13th-century university called the Mustansiriya in Baghdad. These are among the sites most at risk from war.
The article ends stating:
"If any of the holiest Shiite shrines at Karbala, Najaf or Kadhumain are hit, we can only expect a very angry reaction from Muslims everywhere," said Zainab Bahrani, who was born in Iraq and teaches Islamic art at Columbia University. "It would be like bombing St. Peter's in Rome."
| 14 Mar 2003 @ 11:55|
Sister Usha Devi asked if I might post this. Please email her directly if you want to volunteer or participate. We will begin at 5:30AM Los Angeles time.
I repeat my invitation to the following. We have not yet had enough volunteers to make this successful. Please volunteer, and encourage your friends to do this also. Sister Usha Devi ---
Date: Sun, 9 Mar 2003 04:11:20 -0800 (PST)
Please forward this note to anyone whom you feel might be interested. Hello. I am Sister Usha Devi, Founder of a religious group called Divinely Female. We sponsor the divinely-female list at yahoogroups, as well as several other lists.
Many people in the world today are concerned about the current situation in Mesopotamia, specifically, the threat of war between the United States and Iraq. This is holy ground, home of one of the most ancient and venerable civilizations on Earth. A major war in this region would be a great tragedy not only for the people of region, but for all peoples everywhere. We wish to pray for peace by appealing to the oldest Goddess known from anywhere in the world, Inanna. She was worshipped thousands of years ago by the direct ancestors of the present-day Iraqi peoples. She was called Inanna when the region was known as Sumer, Ishtar, Astarte, Aphrodite, and Virgin Mary by later civilizations. Here is what we propose. I shall open a yahoo chatroom on the morning of Saturday, March 15. Anyone who wishes to participate is invited. We shall use the book "Inanna, Queen of Heaven and Earth" by Diane Wolkstein and Samuel Noah Kramer. This was published by Harper and Row of New York in 1983. You may be able to find a copy at a library or at [link] . The first part of the book contains a complete transcript of Inanna's mythology: her coronation, her marriage, her descent to the Underworld, and her return to Heaven. This is followed by seven hymns in her honor, then by explanatory text by modern authors.
I ask now for volunteers to play the various characters in the myth: Inanna, Dumuzi, Ereshkigal, etc. The person playing Inanna will type into the chatroom the lines attributed to Inanna, etc. We shall go through the entire myth like this. Then, when we have finished, we shall do the same with the hymns, one volunteer taking each hymn. You must have a copy of the book to volunteer to be a typer, but if you do not have the book, you can come anyway and read silently what others type.
It is our prayer that Inanna will hear our words and bring peace to the land where she was worshipped so many centuries ago.
Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you wish to volunteer. This will begin Saturday, March 15, at 9 in the morning New York time. We shall be unable to do this unless we receive enough volunteers. May the Great Mother bring a song to your heart and a smile to your lips today and every day.
At 07:47 AM 3/14/2003 -0800, you wrote: My dearest friends and Siblings, We are still planning our ceremony tomorrow, but we still need more volunteers to make it work properly. Most of the major parts are already taken, except the very major role of Inanna's husband, Dumuzi. For some of the minor parts, I might be able to give you instructions by email, telling you what to say and when to say it. So you will not need the book; you will simply need to email me very soon requesting this. Several people have said that they wish to participate, but have not chosen a role. It is important that you do so soon so that I as coordinator will not panic.
Procedure: I shall create a yahoogroups chatline about 8:30 tomorrow morning, New York time. This will be by invitation only; you send me a short email to email@example.com asking me to invite you into the chatroom, and I shall invite you in.
Here is the list of charaters.
Inanna, Queen of Heaven and Earth [taken] Ereshkigal, Queen of the Underworld, sister of Inanna [probably taken] Ninshubar, servant of Inanna Ningal, Moon Goddess, Inanna's mother Geshtinanna, Lady of Wine, Inanna's second cousin and Dumuzi's sister Sirtur, Inanna's great aunt and Dumuzi's mother
MALE Utu, Sun God, Inanna's brother An, Sky God, Inanna's great-grandfather Enki, God of Wisdom, Inanna's grandfather [taken] Isimud, servant of Enki Dumuzi, Inanna's husband and second cousin Neti, gatekeeper of the Underworld [taken] Enlil, Air God, Inanna's grandfather Nama, Moon God, Inanna's father an unnamed friend of Dumuzi
also a few unnamed demons
===== Sister Usha Devi Founder, Divinely Female and worshipper of the Sacred Flame that shines inside every woman