"Secrets of Herod's Reign" on Nat Geo

I watched this show last night and it was pretty interesting. I can recommend it to the board for general viewing, although it contains no special information in particular regarding our discussion topic. It does describe an element of Herod which (imho) never gets enough attention: Herod's use of architecture as both a means of control and of intimidation. This speaks to some of my pet theories about patterns of dynastic leadership. The presence of public works of such size and scale in Rome, Greece, Egypt, and Palestine is more than a coincidence, and underscores the close relationship in the goals and methods of the ruling dynasties in each country. Indeed we have come to the conclusion that they were all populated by the same families, more or less. And this site provides ample evidence as to where they got the idea: beginning with early Egypt, typecasting in successful royal dynasties seems to go hand in hand with large scale architecture and public works. What better way to instill the awe and mystery of self-appointed deities?

The National Geographic Channel has really put quite a bit of programming on for us recently. As mentioned in earlier postings the "Judas" show was also quite interesting, although it failed to "convert" me.

They also ran a show recently called the "Persian Mummy" that was a bit of a tease, as (according to them) it was a fake.

Regarding the excavation of the "Jesus Family Tomb" referred to in Chas.'s recent post, I found it interesting that within the article they mentioned an inscription on the tomb which seems to have been some sort of family sigil, carved in the lintel of the entrance passage. It was described as an inverted triangle within a circle. A curious mark indeed!

best to all,


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