It was frequently sought after by magicians and others who attempted the treatment of insanity in the ancient world, and was probably used most of all in the form of a potion.
Because no single discipline or explanation seems adequate to understandthis practice, the search draws data from biology, anthropology, ancient history, mythology, religion, and ecology. Some have dismissed religious explanations as ar- bitrary and tautological, but the information provided in this article shows that religious beliefs are important.
When Emperor Marcus Aurelius died on the banks of the Danube in 180 CE at Vindobona, or Vienna, the Roman Empire he left behind was the largest transcontinental, transcultural, singular political entity in history before the rise of the European nation state some fifteen centuries later.
It is widely recognized that nearly all preserved copies of Sumerian literary compositions were copied by apprentice scribes as part of their training in the Sumerian language.
The answer I propose is: (1) only at a certain point in human cognitive evolution did it become possible for Homo sapiens to transcend certain biological limitations of the human brain by cultural means; and (2) this increased mental facility was made necessary by the reliance on larger and more cohesive social groups, itself a product of hominin evolution.
The fundamental premise lying behind celestial and other forms of divination in Mesopotamia was that the gods would, on occasions, impart information to humans through signs, that could bode both well and ill, providing a positive or negative answer to a query, or more specific (unfalsifiable) information on what will happen in the future.
The Babylonian Akitu festival has played a pivotal role in the development of theories of religion, myth and ritual
Zenobia and her husband, Odaenathus, ruled on the far Eastern limits of the Roman Empire during the time that is commonly referred to by historians as the ‘Third Century Crisis.’