“For Zeus at the first begat Minos to be a watcher over Crete…”
– Homer, The Iliad, 13.450
“Their judge also must be naked, dead, beholding with very soul the very soul of each immediately upon his death, bereft of all his kin and having left behind on earth all that fine array, to the end that the judgement may be just….to Minos I will give the privilege of the final decision, if the other two be in any doubt; that the judgement upon this journey of mankind may be supremely just.”
– Plato – “Plato in Twelve Volumes,” Vol. 3 , 523e – 524a
The Court of King Minos was always an interesting place, in life and death. In life, three generations before the Trojan War, he presided over the isles of Crete and others in the Aegean Sea, turning them into one of the world’s first naval powers. He received devine direction from his father Zeus which he disseminated as local laws. He drafted the Cretan Constitution. Plagued by the machinations of Daedalus, Minos imprisoned him to his own creation, the Labyrinth, which Daedalus managed to escape. Minos eventually met his end in a Roman bath searching for the inventive tinkerer.
In death, Minos served as the presiding judge over the newly deceased, deciding whether they would spend eternity in either the Isles of the Blest or Tartarus. He along with everyone he judged were naked, which Zeus believed was an improvement over the former system, tainted by the temptations of finery and adornments and character witnesses of those judged before death.
In order to bring fairness to the proceedings, Zeus declared:
they must be stripped bare of all those things before they are tried; for they must stand their trial dead. Their judge also must be naked, dead, beholding with very soul the very soul of each immediately upon his death, bereft of all his kin and having left behind on earth all that fine array, to the end that the judgement may be just.
Must have been a lot of laughs.
And that is how we intend to proceed here in the Court of King Minos, except we will all be alive and not naked. So, I guess we will have a whole different set of rules actually, but I am still keeping the name. King Minos, though a just and decisive jurist, still managed to be beleaguered and bewitched by Daedalus, a reflection of how modern day fully robed judges are also often confused and confounded by issues relating to design professionals. Sometimes things go so absurd or become so unnecessarily complicated that the only solution is to poke a little fun. That is what we will do here. Call out things that only make sense with a sardonic point of view.
So hear ye, hear ye, gather near and all rise for His Honor, Judge King Minos. We are going to have a little fun here, I promise.