Mount Athos – The Holy Mountain
For more than 1000 years orthodox monks have settled at the foot of the holy mount Athos. Athos is a self-governing republic of monks, situated in the Greek peninsula Chalkidiki.
Approximately 2300 monks, divided into 20 large monasteries and numerous hermitages, live on Mount Athos. The peninsula can be considered the center of the orthodox faith: Mecca of the Byzantine world.
A twenty kilometer are of wilderness separates this unique republic from the rest of the world. Athos is only accessible by boat and special permission is needed. As on of their basic principles, entrance for woman is denied. After entering the republic one may feel as if they’ve stepped into an era going back hundreds of years, into a world without noise, stress or haste.
The clocks on Athos run on a different time: six hours ahead. That means the day starts at 1:00 am and ends by 6:00 pm. A strict schedule forms the daily routine of the monks, which includes hours of praying, garden work, chanting and the preparation of the ceremonies.
Athos implies a unique kind of spiritual cohabitation, untouched by our fast and modern society.
By Julius Schrank and Florian Manz. Published in Modern Times
The owner of Erato-Studios, Anestis Vasiliadis, at the monasteries of Mount Athos