Sunday, October 8, 2017

Role of Vestal Virgins

Introduced by King Numa Pompilius during his reign from 715-673 BC, the Vestal Virgins were considered the priestesses of Vesta, the hearth goddess. These 6-10 year old vestal virgins were selected from Roman noble families.

Vestal Virgins

 During the time of Emperor Augustus, however, they were selected by lot. Vestal Virgins were required to maintain their chastity up to the age of thirty. After thirty, they could marry or retire. In cases where they break their vows, they were buried alive because it was unlawful to spill their blood.

Major role

The major role of these priestesses was to keep the sacred fire of Vesta’s shrine burning. It was believed that through the rituals and chastity of the Vestal Virgins, Rome would remain safe, stable and free from political turmoil. They acted as guardians to Rome’s well-being. Aside from this primary role, the Vestal Virgins were also tasked to perform the following roles.

Person of power and influence

Vestals figured significantly in Ancient Rome and were some of the most powerful and influential persons. As such, they were in-charge of keeping wills and legal documents of emperors and statesmen. This was because of their unblemished integrity and character. They guarded sacred objects in the temple and were tasked to make mola salsa, a unique kind of flour sprinkled on all offerings to gods, during the Festival of Vestalia.

Vestal Virgins were also highly regarded by even the highest Roman officials, hence, they occupied seats of honor during events; they bought and owned lands without a male guardian, and they had the privilege to ride in a special two-wheeled carriage called the carpentum.

They were granted the power to free slaves or condemned persons and were given the privilege to provide evidence without the customary oath, as well. Romans celebrated the Festival of Vestalia every 7th until the 15th of June, with the Vestal being honored as a powerful entity.

Other punishments

Earlier records revealed that Vestals who lost their virginity, were whipped to death. When the sacred fire was extinguished, Romans believed that the Vestal Virgins had violated their vows of chastity or that they had neglected their duty, so they punished them by whipping or burying them alive in Campus Sceleratus (Evil Fields), an underground small area, with a meager amount of food and water.

The College of Vestals was disbanded in 394 by order of Emperor Flavius Theodosius Augustus, who reigned from 379 to 395. Also known as Theodosius the Great, the emperor had destroyed pagan temples, including the Vestal shrines. The last chief Vestal recorded was Coelia Concordia in 380. The Vestal Virgins were part of the fascinating history of the Roman Empire.

Friday, August 4, 2017

Developing Your Self-Confidence

You have to develop your self-confidence through practice. If you know that you’re emotionally mature, and you’re aware of your weaknesses and strengths, this will give you self-confidence and stability.

So, how do you develop your self-confidence? After setting your goal for this particular activity, you can follow the steps below.

Manny Pacquiao: Developed his self confidence through constant practice

Let’s summarize the general steps in developing your self-confidence.

Step #1 – Believe in yourself Before others can believe in you, you have to believe in yourself. If you notice, this is the first step that all of the other chapters emphasized.

The way you think is crucial to your success. You should inculcate in your mind that you have faith in yourself, that you belief in yourself.

Step #2 – Act out your self-confidence If you believe in yourself, you must act it out. How does a self-confident person act?

He should stand straight, walk confidently, talk clearly and mingle freely with other people, without feeling insecure. At first, this can be difficult to do, but when you do it daily, you will soon acquire the trait.

Step #3 – Practice every day Practice being self-confident every day. In everything you do, you should be confident.

If you don’t feel confident, pretend to be confident. Gradually, your way of thinking and behavior will become genuine.

 Step #4 – Evaluate your progress Observe your actions if there are positive changes. If there are no changes, you can identify the specific events and use visualization technique to overcome them.

Step #5 – Modify your goals Modify your goals based on the results of your evaluation. Then start all over again. You may want to use a logbook to record your progress.

Monday, June 12, 2017

Assessing the works of author Sidney Sheldon

Sidney Sheldon, world-famous novelist, screenwriter, playwright and director was born on Feb 11, 1917, and died on Jan 30, 2007 at the age of 89. 

Sidney Sheldon

As an author, he wrote several best sellers, such as, “Master of the Game,” “If Tomorrow Comes,” “A Stranger in the Mirror,” “Windmills of the Gods,” and many more best-selling novels. He is also an Academy-award winning writer with the movie “The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer,” and has won awards for his TV write-ups and plays.

Sheldon webs his plot expertly so that readers are left thrilled to know more. His novels allow the readers to get into the characters’ minds and understand why they acted the way they did. 

He unravels his characters like a painter, who slowly develops the ‘picture’ until it becomes evident to his readers. He knows how to touch people’s hearts through his words, and how to move them to turn the pages of the book until they have finished reading.

He can hold the readers’ attention by his simple and compelling way to develop his plot. He also has a way to surprise his readers by unexpected twists and sub-plots that leave readers glued to the book. He revealed that, for readers to keep turning the page, he should “leave the guy hanging on the edge of the cliff at the end of the chapter.”

His novels are full of suspense, drama, intrigue and beautiful endings that leave a “good feeling” behind; that in spite of all the odds, the protagonist triumphs at the end to conquer his demons and adversities. 

That is why his name stamped on a book’s cover is enough to sell the book. In 1997, he was recognized by The Guinness Book of World Records as the Most Translated Author in the World

In his autobiography entitled: “The Other Side of Me,” he told the story of how, at the age of 17, his father talked him out of committing suicide during one of his depressions, by telling him that: “Every day is a different page, Sidney, and they can be full of surprises. You'll never know what's next until you turn the page."

Sidney Sheldon listened to his father’s wise words and later on became one of the best-selling authors of all time, with millions of copies of his novels sold around the world. Even with his death, his books continue to sell, as new readers of this generation got to enjoy one of the most adventurous, uplifting and exciting writer of the century.