|Impacts on Rome | |Conclusion| |Place of Worship| |Requirements|
| Mare Nostrum|
Mithras Positively Impacts Rome
by N. Simpson
Religion played a major role in ancient Eastern history. Specifically, the Mithrian mystery religion positively impacted the Roman society in many ways. The religion had an impact on Roman society, education, military, goals in life, and other religions.
Who Is Mithras?
The Mithras mystery religion had a complicated origin. Some believe that Mithras came from the god Ahura-Mazada, a sun god of Zoroastism. Others believe that it was made up by the Roman soldiers to mock Christianity. But the concrete evidence that is known is that it was primarily located in the eastern region of the Roman Empire. Mithraism was a religion which worshipped the sun God Mithras, had expectations of good behavior, and honored the bull.
Place of Worship
The people worshiped in a building called a mithraeum. The mithraeum was made to resemble a cave, and sometimes it was located in a cave. All mithraeums had a fresco of a bull sacrifice called The Tarurobolism. Each mithraeum usually had a capacity of 100 or more. Some mithraeums had openings in the ceiling to the sky to light up the mithraeum.
The people of the religion had many requirements and rules. One requirement was that you had to be a man if one wanted to be in the religion. Women were looked upon as inferior and would weaken the religion. It also required fellowship with others. Most Mithraists met for a common meal, for intiations, or special ceremonies.
To become part of the religion, one had to be initiated. The initiation was important because it signified new life. The initiate had to participate intaurobolism, which was the sacrificing of a bull. The initiate was dunked into the blood of the bull. Then the initiate and witnesses would participate in the Meal of Bread and Wine. This ritual was believed to give the initiate power over evil.
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This page was created by N.S. Last revised 3/29/00.