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Tony Grist

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A Propos The Satan Pit [Jun. 11th, 2006|10:20 am]
Tony Grist

Things with horns don't scare me.

Comes of being a pagan, I think.

The freaking out at horns is a  Christian thing; a bit parochial.

Before Christianity came along horns were  a symbol of divinity. Osiris has horns, so does Isis, so does Hermes, so does Diana, so does Pan and so on and on and on....

Horns of beasts, horns of the moon.

I guess the Christians gave the devil horns (a) because they associated him with the old gods and (b) because they were iffy about Nature.

So Satan- he's just Pan with a  makeover- and Pan is cool.

Just saying...

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Comments:
[User Picture]From: aellia
2006-06-11 10:16 am (UTC)
And Santa's reindeer have very fine horns.
Do you know the song "The Pan Within" by the Waterboys?
It's good
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2006-06-11 10:27 am (UTC)
I haven't heard that song.

But I think I know what they're talking about. One of the great things I got from Wicca was the opportunity to embrace my inner Pan.
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From: frsimon
2006-06-11 12:29 pm (UTC)
'The freaking out at horns is a local Christian thing; a bit parochial.'

- although the good guys have horns too. In the book of Revelation the 'Lamb' has seven horns. Strangely enough this imagery hasn't made it through to the cuddly iconography of contemporary churches.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2006-06-11 12:56 pm (UTC)
You're right, of course.

And Moses is often portrayed with horns in art- the result, I believe, of a Vulgate mistranslation.
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From: frsimon
2006-06-11 02:57 pm (UTC)
I didn't know that. Thank you!
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[User Picture]From: methodius
2006-06-12 03:53 am (UTC)
And our national anthem has a reference to horns being exalted:

Nkosi sikelel iAfrika
maluphakanisw' uphondo lwayo

Lord bless Africa
may her horn be exalted.

And that is both biblical and African imagery. And wasn't Job finally blessed with horned cattle?

What would you think of one of your bunnies grew horns?

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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2006-06-12 09:12 am (UTC)
I've never really known what that biblical image of the horn being exalted was all about.

And here's another thing. In the Bible they have altars with horns.

If bunny grew a horn I'd take him to the vet. And maybe sell the story to the News of the World.
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[User Picture]From: four_thorns
2006-06-11 03:19 pm (UTC)
i saw a woman on the street yesterday wearing a bicycle helmet with horns.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2006-06-11 03:49 pm (UTC)
I thoroughly approve!
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[User Picture]From: jackiejj
2006-06-11 05:55 pm (UTC)
I think Pan is cool, too.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2006-06-12 09:12 am (UTC)
Good grief! Who is that woman in your icon?
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From: hardrada
2006-06-11 09:10 pm (UTC)
In early modern Europe, Satan's horns would have been a sign that his missus was doing the dirty on him.

I wonder how the cuckold imagery came to overlap with the Devil imagery -- I think the latter is a fairly recent development, though as a good Jungian, I am bound to say it sprang somehow from a much older archetype.
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From: hardrada
2006-06-11 09:12 pm (UTC)
And Derek and Clive singing "I've got the horn" to the tune of the Moonlight Sonata is relevant to the symbol as well. IMWO.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2006-06-12 09:05 am (UTC)
You're probably right about it being archetypal. There are horned devils in oriental art too.

I'm baffled by the cuckoldry thing. Why horns? And, another equally baffling thing, why did people (sometime in the course of the 17th century) stop finding that joke funny?
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[User Picture]From: huskyteer
2006-06-12 08:47 am (UTC)
Jon Pertwee's Doctor makes this very point in The Daemons, my and his favourite Who story ever. (Horns are associated with power because of a race of horned aliens who come and poke their noses in our affairs every so often.)
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2006-06-12 08:57 am (UTC)
Is that the one with the animated gargoyle running about the churchyard? Cool!
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