The Basilica of the Holy Blood (Basiliek van het Heilig Bloed) is a 12th century chapel, in the medieval town of Bruges, Belgium, which houses a revered phial containing cloth stained with the actual blood of Christ. Or so it is believed.
While the chapel itself is a beautiful site, it is the blood and its accompanying story that attracts visitors, from the devoutly religious to the deeply skeptical to those just curious to know what the fuss is all about.
It is popular legend that following the Crucifixion, Joseph of Arimathea wiped blood from the body of Christ and the cloth was preserved. The artifact was kept safe in the Holy Land until the time of the Second Crusade when King of Jerusalem Baldwin III gave it to his brother-in-law, Count of Flanders Diederik van de Elzas. The Count then took the relic back to Bruges where it sits in the upper chapel of the Basilica, still unopened to this day. The phial itself is a marvel, adorned with gold and enclosed at each end by coronets decorated with angels. The chapel is open daily to visitors who wish to view the relic.
"The Procession of the Holy Blood, that dates back to at least 1304, takes place in Bruges every year on Ascension Day. Although there have been many changes over the centuries, the heart of the event is the reenactment of the passion and resurrection of Jesus Christ."
Easter - Christian or Pagan? 2014 04 18
Contrary to popular belief, Easter does not represent the "historical" crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus Christ. In reality, the gospel tale reflects the annual "crossification" of the sun through the vernal equinox (Spring), at which time the sun is "resurrected," as the day begins to become longer than the night.
Rather than being a "Christian" holiday, Easter celebrations date back ...
Man-Made Blood Might Be Used in Transfusions by 2016 2014 04 18 Researchers in the U.K. have created the first man-made red blood cells of high enough quality to be introduced into the human body
The premise of the HBO show and book series True Blood revolves around a technological breakthrough: scientists figure out how to synthesize artificial human blood, which, as an ample new source of non-human food, allows vampires to "come ...
The Trials of the Cherokee Were Reflected In Their Skulls 2014 04 18
Researchers from North Carolina State University and the University of Tennessee have found that environmental stressors – from the Trail of Tears to the Civil War – led to significant changes in the shape of skulls in the eastern and western bands of the Cherokee people.
The findings highlight the role of environmental factors in shaping our physical characteristics.
Our Fears May Be Shaped by Ancestral Trauma 2014 04 18
Last December, an unsettling Nature Neuroscience study found that mice who were taught to associate the smell of cherry blossoms with pain produced offspring who feared the smell of cherry blossoms, even if they had never been exposed to it before. We knew that the process was epigenetic—that it was not hard-wired in the permanent genetic structure of the mouse—but ...
Did vitamin B3 come from space? 2014 04 17
Ancient Earth might have had an extraterrestrial supply of vitamin B3 delivered by carbon-rich meteorites, according to a new analysis. The result supports a theory that the origin of life may have been assisted by a supply of key molecules created in space and brought to Earth by comet and meteor impacts.
"It is always difficult to put a value on ...