Someone posted a mix of music for Hypatia of Alexandria, and it seemed like the appropriate thing to listen to, as I lit a candle and made an offering in an approximation of the style of the Neoplatonic ritualists, on this, the anniversary of her death.
I feel as awkward as a pagan, “claiming” Hypatia, as “one of mine”, when I know she seems as strongly wedded to rationalism and obeying only the evidence of the external senses as any Enlightenment writer, as I felt awkward as an atheist, “claiming” her when I knew she participated in and perhaps felt moved by the rituals en vogue around her, and understood her world from within its own god-suffused idiom.
I suppose it is continued rudeness to continue to attempt to discover her, who died at the hands of people who wanted, out of religion, black and white judgements to discern Us and Them.
In any case, listening to the mix I made a piece of jewelry with a stone and a silver charm, on a line from Borges‘ Theologians:
“Four months later, a blacksmith on the Aventinus, driven to delusions by the misrepresentations of the Histrioni, set a great iron ball upon the shoulders of his little son, so that the child’s double might fly. The man’s child died; the horror engendered by the crime obliged the heresiarch’s judges to be irreproachably severe with him.”
Because humans can scratch the most profound pieces of art, as well as the most atrocious crimes out of the tiniest, identical, scraps, and I want to minimize casualties.
Ave, Diva Hypatia, daughter of Theon. An honorable woman, in skepticism or faith.