Capturing Surreal Life on a Sacred Glacial Mountain
Mount Aragats is an intersection of divinity, science, and living off the land.
In Armenia, Mount Aragats looms overhead as a permanent fixture in the sky, a four-peaked volcano massif that rises from rivers and plains around its base. The mountain is more than just a physical presence: It’s also a divine symbol. Gregory the Illuminator, the patron saint of Armenia who converted the country from paganism to Christianity in the 4th century, is believed to have been bathed in light from a holy lantern while praying there, a sign of eternal purity and vision.
As religion dug its roots into Aragats, daily life unfolded. Villages were formed as settlers carved out lives as herders and farmers. In the mid-20th century, new seeds began to grow on the mountain when the U.S.S.R. set up