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| creative encounters |
Thomas Merton's Encounter with Sufism
A Critical Look at Some Qur'anic Verses on
Asmâ al-Husnâ the beautiful names of God
Religion, Spirituality and the Secular
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| voices of youth |
| focus on the interreligious movement |
| in review |
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Pilgrimage to Mecca Swadeka Ahsun
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|Icon of the Christ and the Rulers in the Hagia Sophia
This mosaic, located in the South Gallery of Istanbul's Hagia Sophia shows Christ enthroned between the Empress Zoe (1028-1050) and her third husband Constantine IX Monomachus (1042-1055). The central figure of Christ is on a larger scale, as befits his divine nature. The mosaic depicts the two rulers making offerings. Constantine IX presents an apokombion, a pouch filled with gold coins. Zoe holds a scroll listing her many gifts to the church.
Constantinople's magnificent Hagia Sophia (“Holy Wisdom”) was in Byzantine times a patriarchal basilica. With the coming of the Ottomans in 1453, the church became one of the great mosques of the city of Istanbul. Today it is a museum preserving spectacular Christian and Muslim art and architecture. Experts believe that the mosaic was probably commissioned by Emperor Romanus II Argyrus (1028-1034), Zoe’s first husband, who was a major benefactor of the Hagia Sophia.
Christ and the Rulers, Hagia Sophia