The 1st to 3rd centuries AD were a time of religious resurgence and upheaval in the ancient Near East. In Rome, the cults of Mithras, Isis and Serapis, once considered to be mere exoticisms, were becoming more widely accepted among the Roman middle and upper classes. Second Temple Judaism had suffered a rift with the crucifixion of Christ and the missionary work of Paul and the Apostles had turned Christianity, a once obscure group of Jewish schismatics, into a messianic force that would eventually become the state religion of the Roman Empire. Among the various mystery cults and apocalyptic movements (of which there were many) that had emerged in this climate, a curious religious movement whose adherents called themselves gnostikoi or “Gnostics” began to emerge around the time of the early 1st century and whose ideas would arguably survive up until the end of the 4th century.
Hildegard of Bingen was a twelfth-century seeress from Germany known for her ecstatic visions in which she would hear a voice from heaven that she described as the un-created “Living Light.” Hildegard had a deep impact on Western spirituality and mysticism, not only in her own day, but in recent years as interest in her has been rekindled in the contemporary era.
The Tempest is a pastoral drama, it belongs to that literary kind which includes certain earlier English plays and is concerned with the opposition of nature and art. These both are presented through the characters of the two non-human beings, the natives of the aisle, Caliban and Ariel. Caliban represents nature without the benefit of nature, nature to an Art which is man`s power over the created world and over himself.; Nature divorced from grace or the senses without the mind. Ariel, on the other hand, is the chief instrument of Prospero’s Art. Prospero exercises his power through Ariel, that is to say, his moral wisdom has been attained through the imagination, or with interaction with the imagination.
Lance Kennedy’s The City Called to Him is about a man, known only as the Wanderer, having returned to the city of youth only to find it profoundly changed. The City, once a vibrant place filled activity and life, is now a dreary, desolate corpse-stricken charnel-house ruled over by a sorceress known only as the Mother. The Mother ascended to the throne of the City after first gaining the trust of and then betraying its Lord, having used dark magic to open a rift, summoning forth all manner of daemons and eldritch abominations who then proceeded to empty the City of all life.
Imagine the defeated remnants of every war and revolution in Western history from the eighteenth century onward. These remnants, who fought to maintain their slave owning lifestyle or their position of nobility, have now been spirited away to a far off place where they manage to set up a colony in some remote part of the world, at the time untouched by civilization, surrounded on all sides by savage tribes.