After Hours: Gifts for the Gods
Thursday 25 February
Manchester Museum. Drop-in, free, adults
A vibrant and eclectic evening where you can meet the curators, mummify some oranges, enjoy a glass of wine and much more.
Join Drs Stephanie Woolham, Lidija McKnight and Campbell Price as they rewrap a mummy, print a poem or hieroglyphic message to send to the gods or take a journey through the catacombs in the ‘Gifts for the Gods’ exhibition.
The University of Manchester is synonymous with the historic unwrapping of Egyptian human mummies. In a reversal of these events, as a way of learning more about how mummies were wrapped, rather than preserved, a public ‘re-rolling’ of an experimental animal mummy will take place. Manchester-based researchers and curators will work together with the view to answering the question – how easy is it to wrap a mummy? – and how long…
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Our relationships with nature and matter are closely connected to our relationships with our bodies. In certain orthodox religious circles, love for God as remote masculine spirit has gone hand in hand with physical self-loathing. For example, Moses Maimonides, the greatest Jewish medieval philosopher, was merely stating a commonly held belief when he said that “all philosophers are agreed that the inferior world, of earthly corruption and degeneration, is ruled by the natural virtues and influences of the more refined celestial spheres.” Likewise, St. Augustine considered his body to be the major source of his spiritual problems and sufferings.
This attitude is an obstacle to the fullest development of our spirituality. In Care of the Soul, Thomas Moore writes:
“Spiritual life does not truly advance by being separated either from the soul or from its intimacy with life. God, as well as man, is fulfilled when God humbles himself…
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Werther and Lotte
“She had a wildness in her eyes and into it I plunged.”
Goethe, “Sorrows of Young Werther”
In January 1778 Christel von Lassberg drowned herself in the river Ilm, the reason most probably being unrequited love. A copy of Goethe’s Sorrows of Young Werther was found in her pocket. Goethe was distraught. He had written the book to purge himself of a period of suffering that a failed romance had cost him. He did achieve his catharsis but a lot of his reading public went “Werther-mad” after the book was published:
“In scores of literary, plastic, and musical forms Werther’s life was extended in Europe and America and even into China (where a porcelain factory reproduced him on tea-sets for the European market). Men dressed like him, in blue coat, buff-yellow waistcoat and knee-breeches, women wore a perfume called ‘Eau de Werther’.”
(from the Introduction by David…
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