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Success Lessons From Greek Tycoon Aristotle Onassis's Life

The moment you finished this article, you will be able to learn how you can find whatever the years just ahead are good or bad for you, and how long this season will last, so that you can act accordingly: if there is a storm on The horizon, you will take shelter in time, if sunny days loom ahead, you will take advantage before the opportunity passes, so that you can highly succeed in life.

Before that however, we have first to see what lessons derive from Greek tycoon Aristotle Onassis's life, how the alternatives of his life seasons from good to bad and vice versa radically influenced his successful career. Onassis began his career as a ship owner in 1933, while the Great Depression of 1929 had not ended yet. Because of the crisis, the ships' prices had declined precipitously. A ten-year-old freighter, which had cost $ 1 million to build in 1920, could now be obtained for $ 20,000. Onassis found that a whole fleet of ten such ships was for sale in Saint Lawrence in Canada. He immediately bought six of those ships for $ 20,000 each. And some years later, he expanded his fleet tremendously: he obtained a loan of $ 40 million in 1947 from various American banks and built 18 more ships, tankers included.

But in 1954 he did something that moved him to the brink of destruction. After a series of negotiations, he concluded an agreement with the king of Saudi Arabia that would give him the exclusive rights to use his tankers to transport that country's huge oil output. As soon as the agreement became known, however, a storm of protest broke out against Onassis – not only the big US oil companies, which had the exclusive right to produce the Saudi Arabian oil, but also from the government of the United States itself.

The oil companies protested specifically to Saudi Arabia, and simultaneously made clear to Onassis that each time his ships would arrive in that country's ports to load crude oil, they would not let him have it. US Secretary of State John Foster Dulles warned the Saudis that if they insist on upholding the agreement with Onassis, the American oil companies would stop oil production in that country. In the face of that reaction, the king of Saudi Arabia was forced to cancel the agreement.

At the same time, the US oil companies decided, out of revenge, to discontinue any cooperation with Onassis. Each time a charter contract for any of his ships expired, they would not renew it, giving it instead to other ship owners. At the end of 1955, half of Onassis's tanker fleet was idle. His main source of income was drying up at tremendous speed. That situation continued into 1956 as well. More and more of his ships were becoming idle, and those ships were mortgaged with the huge loans he had borrowed to build them. But Onassis no longer had sufficient income to repay the loans. In despair, he went around to the American banks to which he was engaged, asking them to take over management of his ships. The international shipping community expected him to announce bankruptcy at any moment.

That bankruptcy never happened, however. A new season started in Onassis's life. In October 1956, the Suez Canal closed to shipping because of the crisis between Egypt and Israel. As a result, ships had to circumnavigate Africa, adding considering time to each trip. Too few ships were available to meet the demand, and freight costs skyrocketed to unpackedented heights in 1957. The only ship owner who had ships available was Onassis. Because of the boycott the American oil companies had imposed on him, he had a huge number of ships standing idle in various ports. The results were predictable. Onassis's ships were chartered by desperate merchants, the boycott ended, and the acrimonial relations with the oil companies were forgotten.

Instead of destruction, triumph had arrived. Onassis began to realize dizzying profits: in 1957 alone, he earned $ 70 million – while ten years earlier, he had been head over heels in debt with the $ 40 million loan he had taken out. The profits were unbelievable. Onassis did not know what to do with all this money. His first act was to repay all the loans he owed.

His second act was to commission the building of new ships –among them a 100,000-ton tanker, the largest in the world at that time. His third act was to give a resplendent reception in Monte Carlo to celebrate his improved fortunes. And after some years, Onassis became the wealthiest person on earth.

By 1973, however, Onassis's brilliant season would end abruptly. What followed was a tragic season, the last of Onassis's life. In January 1973, Onassis's son Alexander was killed in a plane crash at the Athens airport at the age of 19. Onassis showed at first that he overcame that event. Immediately after his son's funeral and burial on his private island Skorpios, he started expanding his fleet. While the fleet then associated of more than 100 ships -among them 15 supertankers of 200,000 tons each – Onassis commissioned six more tankers to be built, two of them of 400,000 tons each, the largest tankers in the world.

But from 1974, things began worsening. Perhaps because of his son's death, he began in 1974 to suffer from myasthenia gravis, an incurable disease affecting the eyes and other parts of the body. He could not hold his eyelids open, and had to keep them up with tape. He had also a hard time swallowing food and slurred his words when speaking. Not surprisingly, he was full of complaints: about his life, about himself, about his marriage, about everything.

Next year-1975- was the last in Onassis's life: he became seriously ill from pneumonia. In an awful condition, he entered a hospital in Paris, where he was operated on to no avail. On March 15, 1975, the wealthiest man in the world died -at the age of 69. Only his daughter Christina was at his bedside.


From Onassis' life derives that in 1957, the bad season he experienced till that year (he was faced with bankruptcy, as you can recall) suddenly ended, and a good season started for him, when the Suez Canal closed to shipping and he began becoming The wealthiest person on earth. But in 1974, a reversal of seasons happened in his life: his good season ended that year and a bad one started, when his beloved son Alexander was killed in a plane crash, and Onassis began to suffer from myasthenia gravis that led him finally to Death.

Resembling alternations of seasons, however, derives also from the biographies of many other famous people I have studied. Among them, there are the biographies of Napoleon, Beethoven, Verdi, Churchill, Picasso, Jackie Kennedy Onassis, Queen Elizabeth I of England, Elizabeth Taylor, Margaret Thatcher, Columbus, Mandela, and many others, more than 20 biographies in total.

For example:
— Beethoven's good and bad seasons alternated in 1776, 1792, 1809, and 1825
— Napoleon's alternated in 1776, 1792, and 1809
— Churchill's alternated in 1875, 1892, 1908, 1924, and 1941
— Verdi's alternated in 1825, 1842, 1859, 1875, and 1892
— Picasso's alternated in 1892, 1908, 1925, 1941, and 1957
— Jackie Kennedy Onassis's alternated in 1941, 1957, 1974, and 1990
— Elizabeth Taylor's alternated in 1941, 1958, 1975, and 1990
— Margaret Thatcher's alternated in 1941, 1957, 1975, and 1990
— Mandela's alternated in 1941, 1957, 1974, and 1990
— Queen Elizabeth's I of England alternated in 1545, 1562, 1578 and 1595
— Columbus's alternated in 1479 and 1496.

Comparing these biographies, I arrived at an astonishing discovery: the seasons of all the above people alternating according to a certain pattern. Also, after extensive research, I found that our own lives' seasons alternate according to the same certain pattern. That means, therefore, we can foresee how our life's good and bad seasons will alternate in the future, with amazing accuracy.

So, we can act accordingly. If there is a storm on the horizon, we can take a shelter in time. If sunny days loom ahead, we can take advantage before the opportunity passes. We can thus highly succeed in life by taking contractual decisions regarding our career, marriage, family, relationships, and all other life's issues.

The Gods of Atlantis – The Fallen Angels, Their Names, Their Crimes, and Their Punishment

Giants have etched their way into the collective subconscious of isolated cultures through time. The Bible is again consistent with world mythology and the Giants of Genesis had turned the continent of Atlantis into a war zone and an abomination. For it was on Eden that two hundred Fallen Angels descended and set themselves up on the first Earthly Mt. Herman. The flood of Noah was to destroy the whole land of Eden. Mt. Herman and the palaces of the Nephilim were to be destroyed in a violent cataclysm that would resonate into the annals of history as "The Fall of Atlantis."

In Homer's Iliad, The Trojan War takes place between the Greeks and the Trojans of Troy. Zeus and Apollo play "war" with humans in a battle for an Adamic Daughter. The gods intervene on behalf of both sides and during these times, Earth was a living chessboard for their delight and pleasure. For thousands of years humans believed that Troy was an imaginary city from ancient Greek Mythology. The Roman Poet Virgil wrote about it in the Aeneid. Ancient Greek historians Erastosthenes, Herodotus, and Duris of Samos, each published comments on the subject and Strabo, a Greek geographer, philosopher, and historian described the location and topography in the Geographica. For thousands of years, The City of Troy was the archeological "Holy Grail" and many through time have pursued its discovery. It remained a myth for thousands of years until Heinrich Schliemann, a German entrepreneur and archeologist, unearthed the infamous city in the 1870's. Schliemann was a self-made millionaire and after his retirement at age 41, Schliemann read and traveled and eventually received his Ph. D. in 1869. He spoke and wrote in over 13 languages ​​and his dissertation on his thesis for the location of Troy was written in Ancient Greek. The most amazing thing about Schliemann was his declaration that he would find Troy, at age of 8.

The battle for Helen was one of many instances where Divine Hybrids "Took for themselves wives." Genesis 4:16 states "Lamech took two females." This is not Noah's father, but rather Cain's great, great, great, great grandson. The Hebrew word used here means, "to take, to get, and invokes the idea of ​​grasping or seizing a person or animal." The Sons of Eloheem also took wives for themselves. In Homer's Iliad, Paris, a descendant of the god Zeus, attempts to steal Helen for his wife. So here we have a Hybrid Paris, attempting to take a wife from the Mythological city of Troy. Schliemann finds Troy and any skeptical could say that even if troy exists, it does not mean that fallen Angels oversaw a war to please Paris' sexual desires for Helen of Sparta. But Schliemann proved it exhausted and that its origins date to 3500 BC

Zeus rules the gods of this world and the Fallen Angels each govern civilizations on every continent. Poseidon rules over Atlantis and it is the geographical capitol of godly rule on Earth. Atlantis, for which the Atlantic Ocean is named, was geographically located between Europe and the Americas. Known by many other names across cultures and continents we have an unquestionably similar archetype in Eden. Yeheveh said he would destroy the whole earth, with a lowercase "E," as in, dirt. The submersion of a continent constituents a total destruction of the soil.

The most fascinating evidence for the existence of Atlantis is an account by the Greek philosopher, Plato. In his work, Timaeus, Plato records a dialogue between the Greek philosophers Socrates, Timaeus, and the politicians Critias and Hermocrates. In this account Socrates is waxing poetically about Athens being a perfect society. Critias then reveals to them that at its apex Athens faced its antithesis of a society, a Naval power bent on conquering the world from its homeland, Atlantis. Solon, while in Egypt in the 6th century BC, was told to have spoken with Egyptian Priests who revealed to him the history of the war between Atlantis and Athens.

The Fallen Angels descended to Earth, to the continent of Atlantis where they set up an Angelic Government of Sorts which headquarters they named Mt. Herman. The Garden of Eden was located on the western portion of Atlantis as Cain was sent Eastward, most likely by sailboat, across the ocean to the continent of Nod. Mt. Herman was the highest point on Atlantis and a city, called Mt. Olympus, was built there for the Fallen Angels to conduct the business of playing God.

And it came to pass when the children of men had multiplied that in those days were born to them beautiful and comely daughters. And the angels, the children of the heaven, saw and lusted after them, and said to one another: 'Come let us choose wives from the children of men and beget us children.' And Semjaza, who was their leader, said unto them: 'I fear ye will not indeed agree to do this deed, and I alone shall have to pay the penalty of a great sin.' And they all answered him and said: 'Let us all swear an oath, and bind ourselves by mutual imprecations not to abandon this plan but to do this thing.' Then swear they all together and bound themselves by mutual imprecations upon it.
The Book of Enoch VI: 1-5

The Angels were assigned to watch. They invited the women from outer space and must have discussed it on a regular basis. Semjaza indicates his interest because his response, as their leader, was not to turn them in for crimes against the Kingdom; Instead he says to them he was not sure because "only" he would be punished for it all because he has authority over them. They understood where he was coming from and said that they were willing to put mutually binding curses on any Angel that abandoned the ocean to descend to Earth and take wives. So they swore and descended and Yeheveh knew it.

And they were in all two hundred; Who descended in the days of Jared on the summit of Mt Herman, and they called it Mt. Hermon, because they had sworn and bound themselves by mutual imprecations upon it.

The Book of Enoch VI: 6

Mutual Imprecations means "evil curses' and Hermon is derived from one of two words spelled exactly the same way." They are "Haram" and "Herem." Haram is verb meaning "to destroy, to doom, or to devote." Herem is Defined as a noun meaning devoted things, things devoted to destruction, devotion, things under ban, and cursed. "

The only difference between the two words is the vowel points telling the reader what to think. They named this Mt. Herman because they declined there and mutually swore an evil curse on any who abandoned them. They depended on the Continent of Atlantis and set up a kingdom and a council that would allot each angel an territory with which to set themselves up as gods. Semjaza was their leader and he is the most likely candidate for the god Zeus. The others had a rank below Semjaza and this order of authority issued on Earth. He and the other Fallen Angels are responsible for teaching humans specific Divine "secrets" that to them was supernatural knowledge, but to Yeheveh, "worthless ones." Enoch not only provides us with the names of the Angels, but more importantly, it gives us the specific secrets that they are accused of demonstrating.

And these are the names of their leaders: Semiazaz, their leader, Arakiba, Rameel, Kokabiel, Tamiel, Ramiel, Danel, Ezeqeel, Baraqijal, Asael, Armaros, Batarel, Ananel, Zaqiel, Samsapeel, Statarel, Turel, Jomjael, Sariel. These are the Chiefs of tens.
The Book of Enoch VI: 7

These 18 Angels each controlled 10 less Angels. These Angels descended on Mt. Herman and With Semjaza, recited the Oath of Defection to the others. The Angels below are also accused of teaching secrets to humans.

And behold the names of the Angels and these are their names: the first of them is Samjaza, The second, Artaqifa, and the third, Armen, the fourth, Kokabel, the fifth, Turael, the sixth, Rumjal, the seventh, Danjal , The eighth, Neqael, the ninth, Baraqel, the tenth, Azazel, the eleventh, Armaros, the twelfth, Baterjal ,, the thirteenth, Busasejal, the fourteenth, Hananel, the fifteenth, Turel, and the sixteenth, Simapesiel, the seventeenth , Jetrel, the eighth, Tumael, the nineteenth, Turel, the twenty, Rumael, the twenty-first, Azazel.
The Book of Enoch LXIX: 2

Does Your Website Follow “The Iron Law of Marketing?”

Many websites unwittingly ignore ‘The Iron Law’ of Marketing. They begin by explaining features about the company, e.g. how long they’ve been in business, what their premises look like, etc. The truth is that most visitors to your website couldn’t give a hoot about the features of your company! What they primarily care about is WIIFM.

WIIFM stands for ‘What’s In It For Me’. It’s ‘The Iron Law of Marketing’. Unless visitors to your website can quickly see what your business can do for them, the chances are that they’ll be gone quickly, typically in seconds. Once they’re gone, they’re gone – probably never to return.

WIIFM – ‘What’s in it for me’. Are we really so self-centred? Well, yes, I’m afraid that we are. Please don’t feel guilty – it’s just the way we’re hard-wired. Sure, farther down the line, we care about others. But, first and foremost, we’re concerned about how we survive and thrive. That’s simple evolutionary common sense.

If you want your visitor to stay on your website, you need to heed ‘The Iron Law of Marketing’. You need to give your visitors WIIFM – ‘What’s in it for me’. But the paradox is this: the ‘me’ shouldn’t be you (i.e. your premises, etc). It should be them – your visitors.

You need to put yourself in your visitors’ shoes and address what they’re interested in, what they might want, how you may be able to help them.

Most companies are concerned to get ‘targeted traffic’ (i.e. potential clients to their sites) through SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) and other clever stuff. And this is important – very important indeed.

But if most of your prospective clients leave your website in a few seconds, isn’t that just a little bit silly? (And we’ve all done it, me too!) Isn’t that rather like filling a bucket with water… which just runs out of all the holes in the bottom?

It’s not rocket science! We simply need to show visitors to our websites the benefits of doing business with us. And we need to do it in a fun, interesting manner.

If possible, we should pack our websites with ‘FREE gifts’, so that visitors derive immediate benefit. One of the most valued gifts is FREE information which you give to your visitors and which will help them.

I’m amazed when I see websites created and run by people ten times more clever than me… yet doomed to failure because they broke ‘The Iron Law of Marketing’ – WIIFM, ‘What’s In It For Me’.

Often it just needs a change in focus and some alterations for your website to be much more successful. If you disregard WIIFM, it will become your worst enemy. If you take heed, it will become your best friend.

The Golden Greeks – The Romance of Maria Callas and Aristotle Onassis


The career of Maria Callas had already begun its downward slide when she was introduced to Aristotle Onassis. It was 1957 and she was 35 years old. She had been married to the elderly, short, squat Giovanni Battista Meneghini for ten years.

Maria found some comfort for her diminishing artistic success in high society. Elsa Maxwell brave an elegant party for Maria in Venice. Before she knew it, Aristotle Onassis had managed to inveigle the seat next to hers at the dinner table. For the next seven days, where she was he appeared next to her as if by magic. She found it flattering and pleasant, but for the time being, nothing more.

Then the morning before a gala charity concert for a Legion d'Honneur in 1958, Maria received a huge bunch of red roses, with good wishes in Greek, signed Aristotle Onassis. Another huge bunch of red roses arrived at lunch, also with good wishes in Greek, signed Aristotle. And just as she was about to leave for the opera house came another bunch of roses, also with good wishes in Greek. This time there was no signature on it. Maria knew who had sent it …

On June 17, after a performance of MEDEA at Covent Garden, Maria and her husband attended a reception at the Dorchester where they met Aristotle Onassis again. This time Maria was ready ….

Next he organized a party for her which literally left her gasping. The Meneghinis were millionaires, but compared to Onassis, they felt like a poor relatives. He invited forty people to come as his guests to the opera and then one hundred and sixty to a party at the Dorchester. It was more lavish than any ever given for Maria before, even by Elsa Maxwell. The ballroom was adorned entirely in orchid pink and overflowing with matching roses. She had often heard the expression, "Your wish is my command," but this was the first time in her life she had seen it in action. Aristotle never left her side and no request of hers was too small for him to grant. When she casually mentioned she liked tangos, he rushed up to the bandleader with fifty pounds in his hand. After that nothing but tangos were played all evening. They did not leave the Dorchester until after 3 o'clock in the morning. In the foyer, the Meneghinis and Onassis were photographed in a hug, Aristotle on one side of Maria and Meneghini on the other. The shot turned out to be prophetic.

Ari kept inviting her all evening to come and cruise with him and Tina on the Christina. He was hard to resist and poor Meneghini did not offer much competition. For a little girl from a lower middle class neighborhood in Washington Heights, it was a fairy tale, a dream come true. In spite of Meneghini's impassioned protests, they were going cruising on the Christina.

Maria went shopping in Milan, where she sent millions of lire on bathing suits, vacation outfits, and lingerie. A sophisticated friend later told Maria that a woman always buys new lingerie when she is about to have an affair. She was right, but Maria did not know it yet; She told herself she just wanted to look nice on the trip.

On board the three million dollar sea palace as large as a football field were Winston Churchill and his wife and daughter, Gianni Agnelli and his wife, and many other well known Greek, American, and English personalities. Maria ran about the ship like a school girl, exclaiming at each new discovery, now the solid gold fixtures shaped like dolphins in each bathroom, now her elegant, beautifully decorated bathroom and marble bathroom with adjoining boudoir and limitless closet space for all her beautiful new Clothes (a suite, incidentally, which she never used later without Ari and she had a fight), now the real El Greco in Ari's study, the fabulous jeweled Buddha, the swimming pool decorated with a mosaic reproduction of a fresco from the palace of Knossos, the huge oak paneled lounge with a majestic grand piano at one end and a lapis lazuli fireplace at the other, and Ari's private bathroom that looked like a temple, and the bath, inlaid with flying fish and dolphins, which was an exact copy Of the one in King Minos's lost Palace of Knossos in Crete. Ari, who had fussed like a housewife over every detail, was in raptures over each of Maria's enthusiastic outbursts. The ship boasted a crew of sixty, including two chefs, one French, one Greek. The guests were given a choice of menus, but Maria, who had lost a great deal of weight, was still eating mostly raw meat and salads. But since she had a habit of sneaking bits of food from everyone else's plates, she got at least a sampling of the fine cuisine.

The trip was literally an eye opener for her, a staid Italian matron who believed in fidelity and monogamy. She was shocked to see many of the guests sunbathing without any clothes on, and some of them openly playing around with other people's mates on deck. Aristotle was one of those walking around naked. He was very hairy, like a gorilla, Battista said. Maria's reaction to his nudity was the second sign that she was becoming another person. She had always been a bit of a prude. She would not sing the Dance of the Seven Veils in Richard Strauss's SALOME because she had to take off her clothes. But when she saw Ari walking around like that, she giggled like a school girl. She had never seen a nude man surrounded Battista.

For Maria, it was a magnificent three week voyage. Their plans were to stop first at Portofino, a toy port on the coast of Italy, and then go on to Capri for sight-seeing. Then they would sail from the Mediterranean through the Aegean Sea to the Gulf of Corinth. From there they planned a sight seeing a trip of Delphi, sailing on to Izmir, the Turkish name for Ari's boyhood home, and then on up to the Dardanelles to Istanbul and home again.

Maria's enthusiasm was not shared by Meneghini. He got crabbier and crabbier the further along they got on their voyage. He was interested in either the ship nor the other guests, and spent his time whining about the way they were sliding him. Maria found his griping and endless criticism of Aristo increasingly irritating. She kept comparing his sluggish demeanor with Ari's vigor and passion for life, and Battista fell far short. He was only nine years older than Ari, but Maria felt but he acted like his grandfather.

Maria was drunk with the fresh sea air, the cloudless blue skies, and the company of Onassis. By the time they reached Piraeus, the weather became so stormy Meneghini and most of the other guests took to their staterooms, leaving Aristo and Maria practically alone. They sat in the deserted games room basking before the fire in the lapis lazuli fireplace. The sparkle of the flames lit up the deep blue of the lapis, and was reflected in his eyes, which were black and round as Greek olives. The room was dimly lit, and once in a while it was brilliantly illuminated by a flash of lightening. Once during such a flash Maria saw her own eyes mirrored in his. She took it as an omen. His eyes, her eyes, it was all the same to Maria.

The motion of the ship on the stormy seas rocked them back and forth, so she was almost in a trance as they sat there talking all night long. They talked mostly in Greek, Egypt, rather, Ari did. He told her all about his boyhood, where he came into the world seventeen years before Maria in Smyrna near the coast of Turkey. Later he had the captain stop the ship there so he could show her the house where he was born. He spoke about the Greek quarters where he was brought up, and of his father and uncle, who were flourishing merchants of cotton, tobacco, and anything else that would grow in the Anatalyan area. Then without making a play for sympathy, he described his mother's death during a kidney operation when he was only six. He told her of his father's subsequence remarriage to his aunt, and of his beloved grandmother. He also said he had been a choirboy and boasted with a beguiling smile that he, too, had a good voice. She found him enchanting, and knew other women did, too. He had been a ladies' man from the time he pinched his English teacher's bottom and was suspended from school. He was incorrigible from the beginning, and made love for the first time when he was only thirteen. When Maria thought she was twice that age when she had her first sexual experience, she was embarrassed!

He also told her of the horrors in his life that surpassed Maria's experiences during the Second World War. He had lived through the Turkish attack on Smyrna and had seen thousands of Greeks tortured and killed. At age sixteen he rescued his father from the cruel Turks, who massacred one million Greeks in Turkish Asia Minor between 1918 and 1923. Then he told Maria of crossing the sea in a filthy boat crammed with a thousand immigrants in steerage until his arrival at Buenos Aires on September 21, 1923. It amazed Maria that six weeks before she was born, Ari was already an experienced man on his way to success. He soon started his career with the telephone company and, by the time he was twenty-four, had become Greek vice-consul general in Argentina. Shortly after he found the two Canadian ships with which he began his stunning career.

On August 4 they dropped anchor at the foot of Mount Athos, where an incident happened that was to change Maria's life forever. They were received by the Patriarch Athenagoras, and knelt side by side to receive his blessing. Speaking in Greek, he called them "the world's greatest singer and the greatest seaman of the modern world, the new Ulysses." When he thanked them for the honors they had brought to the Greek world, Maria's eyes filled with tears. It was as if he were performing a solemn marriage ceremony. Somehow she felt he bought her God's permission to be together with Ari, and her last resistance crumbled. After that they were man and wife in their minds, and a few hours later, in their bodies.

That night there was a party at the Istanbul Hilton for the guests of the Christina. Meneghini said he felt too tired and weak to attend and remained on board the ship. When Maria returned at five in the morning, he was waiting up for her and demanded to know why she was so late. Maria knew she could not keep up the farce any longer. "I am in love with Ari," she said.

A week after the Christina had docked in Istanbul, the Meneghinis left the ship on one of Onassis' private planes and flew to Milan, and then promptly left for Sirmione. Maria wore a bracelet with the initials TMWL (To Maria With Love) engraved on it.

Parting from Ari left a hole in Maria's heart, which she filled by fantasizing the whole night long he would come get her. To her great surprise, to say nothing of Battista's, at nine o'clock the next morning they heard a voice outside her window singing, "Maria, Maria!" It was Aristo. He told Battista, "I've come to marry your wife."

At four o'clock in the morning, she left with Aristo for Milan. He then flew to Venice to discuss divorce with Tina.

For the first time in her life, Maria was madly in love with a man in love with her. It was too much to take in all at once. She was flooded with so much feeling she felt she could not bear it. Then she would remind herself that despite the blessing of the patriarch Athenagoras, she was having an affair with a married man, and this would calm her down a bit. Then she appeared her conscience with the knowledge that she and Ari would try to get divorces and marry as soon as possible.

People said Callas' whole personality changed, that her sharp edges had melted and she had become a softer, gentler person. Even poor Battista said she was a different woman. For the first time in her life she was happy. She had the feeling of being kept in a cage so long that when she met Aristo, bursting with vigor and zest for life, she became another woman. Even Antonio Ghiringhelli, the taciturn and enigmatic manager of La Scala, succumbed to her new temperament. The iceman actually smiled with his whole face when he asked Maria to return to La Scala on her own terms and to sing anything she wanted. She arrived in Milan on September 2 in wonderful spirits to begin rehearsals for the new recording.

Her happiness was somewhat flawed by the press and photographers, who persecuted her merclysly. The throngs were so numerous and unruly she needed physical protection to keep from being mauled. On one occasion they caught Ari and Maria dining tete-a-tete at the Rendez-vous in Milan, and at three o'clock that morning they were photographed going into the Hotel Principe e Savoia arm in arm. In order to increase Maria's chances of getting a divorce by mutual consent, her lawyers insisted she issued a statement to the press saying: "I confirm that the break between my husband and myself is complete and final. Time, and cruise on the Christina was only coincidental …. I am now my own manager. I ask for understanding in this painful personal situation, "she said sweetly. "Between Signor Onassis and myself there exists a profound friendship that dates back some time." I am also in a business connection with him. When I have another things to say, I will do so at the opportunity moment. "

Maria despised living a lie, which she knew no one believed anyhow. Aristo was also attacked by reporters, but he was more honest than Maria. "Of course," he said, "how could I help but be flattered if a woman with the class of Maria Callas fell in love with someone like me? Who would not?"

On September 10, as soon as the GIOCONDA recording was finished, Maria rushed to the Milan airport to board the private plane Ari had sent for her. From there she flew to Venice, where she excitedly boarded the Christina. Aristo was exuberant and triumphantly marked her arrival by setting off the loud, blasting siren announcing the departure of the Christina. Only two other guests were along this time, Ari's sister, Artemis and her husband Theodore Garoufalidis.

Tina was not on board. She had taken her children a few days before and fled to Paris to the home of her father, the respected Greek shipowner, Stavros Livanos. Aristo, who was upset about the children, followed her in his private plane to make a half-hearted gesture of reconciliation. But Tina was not about to forgive him for the public humiliation to which he had subjected her. This left Ari free to do what he really wanted, to sail on the Christina with Maria Callas.

What a dream voyage it was, with both of them relaxed and at peace with themselves! Their love was just what the Good Doctor ordered. They soaked up the sun all day long, swam for hours in the sun drenched Mediterranean, and were free to make love all night.

Luxuriating in her new happiness left Maria unwilling to give up one moment of it. She was so immersed in the timelessness of the present she paid no attention to her career. She was sick and tired of being a sexless nun, and was relieved to leave it behind her. Neverheless, she was shocked when a newspaper compared the number of appearances she had made pre and post-Ari. In 1958, she cave twenty-eight performances of seven operas in six cities all over the world. In 1960 she defended only seven performances of two operas in two cities, and in 1961 her schedule showed just five performances, all of MEDEA at Epidaurus and La Scala. The decline continued even more quickly in 1962, when she sang MEDEA twice at La Scala. And in 1963 she brave no performances at all. In 1964, sadly enough, Maria Callas made the last stage appearance of her life.

But like most heavenly sojourns on earth, Maria's utopia was short lived. Or depending it would be nearer correct to say it became sporadic, as a new phase of their relationship began. Like many men, once Ari had Maria for his own, he became much more difficult. Now he played the one hard to get. Gone were the days of the Dorchester when every wish of hers was his command. Now his pleasure became primary to both of them. To Maria's despair, he spent time with his wife, trying to woo her back. He began to date other women. He behaved like a typical Greek man and Maria a typical Greek woman, who philosophy is that a man can not really change himself, but a woman must be able transform herself to suit her man.

Now he became withdrawn and difficult, now staying away for as much as a week, not even phoning when he did not feel like it. Nor would he answer her calls. She would be in a panic for days at a time. He had all the power in the relationship: She could only sit and wait for his call.

Then suddenly, for no reason she could understand, he would begin to phone again every day and send her flowers. Or he would show up unexpectedly or send for her. She was so happy to see him she overlooked being hurt and angry. Each return was like another honeymoon.

They talked a lot about getting married. When Ari said once more he would marry her, Maria made an announcement to the press. Ari told reporters it was just a childish prank and purely Maria's fantasy! She was a good little girl again and said nothing. How she had changed from the Xanthippe who was married to Meneghini!

Ari behaved like a pasha, and when he did not want Maria along on the voyages of the Christina, he had no compunctions about kicking her off. No excuse was necessary.

Meanwhile, Tina was going about getting her divorce, in spite of Aristotle's pleas for a reconciliation. Maria was overjoyed when he agreed to look at a chateau with her in Eure-et-Loire. The divorce came through a month later. The chateau never did.

Maria had agreed to give two performances of NORMA in August in Greece. It had almost a religious significance for Ari that his mistress score a triumph at historic Epidaurus. He put everything else aside for her those weeks, and they were deliriously happy again as they spent almost all their time together. When he loved her everything seemed possible. And, indeed, the performance on August 24 turned out to be one of the peak experiences of her life. Maria loved Ari as he was and accepted all his weaknesses along with the qualities she admitted in him. He, on the other hand, was constantly trying to change her. He did not like the way she dressed, and actually phoned Biki, one of Milan's most important fashion designers, during Maria's fittings to make sure her new clothes would be to his taste. He said she looked plain in her glasses. Since Maria was unable to tolerate contacts, she walked about the ship half blind, holding her glasses in her hand. He did not like her long hair either, which had always been her glory. So he sent her to Alexandre in Paris, who cut her hair while she kept her hands over her eyes. To her surprise, she loved the short, bouncy hairstyle he created, and thought it made her look younger and more sophisticated.

That the years passed, with Maria ever hopeful and Onassis ever more brutal. In 1963, Lee Radziwell, Jackie Kennedy's sister, who was on board the Christina, left to fly to her sister's bedside, where she had just given birth to Patrick Bouvier Kennedy, who died two days later. When Lee returned to Athens, she told Ari and Maria how desolate and disturbed her sister was. Ari immediately offered Mrs. Kennedy the use of the Christina for her convalescence. She eagerly accepted, although neither the president nor Maria shared her enthusiasm. President Kennedy objected to his wife's cruise because Onassis had been indicated during the Eisenhower administration for conspiring to defraud the American government of taxes on surplus American ships. He had to pay the government seven million dollars to get off the hook. And Maria – she had vague anxieties she did not understand. She only knew she felt desolate and lonely at the thought of Mrs. Kennedy's presence on board, and strangely enough, found herself trembling with fear.

Her voice continued to go down hill. Just when she needed him the most, Aristo became impossible, and in 1967 they had their worst summer together yet. Ingse Dedichen, his lover during World War Two, told a friend Ari had beaten her up until she looked "like a boxer who has lost a fight." He told her afterward every Greek without exception beats up his wife. "It is good for them," he said. "It keeps them in line."

He never beat Maria physically – he probably knew that the one thing he could not get away with – but his treatment of her was almost as brutal. No curse was too vile to hurl at her, no words of abuse too insulting. She was told to shut up because she was only a stupid dame who nose was too big, with glasses that made her look ugly and legs that were too fat. He was not above saying she was just a cunt with a whistle in her throat who was good only for fucking. And always in front of people, to make her humiliation that much more painful.

Aristo was having his difficulties, both with his old friend Vergottis, who later sued him and lost, and with Prince Ranier, who was trying to unseat Ari as the person with the controlling interest in the State of Monaco. Ari loved his power over the principality, and gloried every time he took a step into Monaco. For him, it was the crowning jewel of his life. In a brilliant move, the prince created 600,000 shares in the company, and offered to buy out any shares of the existing shareholders at the market rate, thus giving him and his stockholders complete power over the destination of his country. Ari appeared to the courts and lost. A defeated man, he left Monaco, not to return until shortly before he died.

Of all the possible times of her life it could have happened, Maria picked the moment when their relationship was at its lowest point to become pregnant. She could not wait to tell Ari about it. She wanted to have a baby more than she ever wanted anything in my life besides him, and the thought of bearing the child of the man she loved filled her with tenderness. But Ari had other ideas.

"Why should I want another child?" He said. "I already have two."

"But Aristo," Maria pleaded, "I have always wanted a child." It is a miracle I'm pregnant at all at the age of forty-three. If I do not have this baby, I will never have another. "

"Have it then," he said, "and it will be the end of our relationship."

Maria had the abortion. But it marked the end of their love affair, even though they stayed together for a few years longer.

Maria did not know what to do. She could not live with him and she could not live without him. She was forty-three years old and had never had a place of her own. So she compromised and got her own apartment in Paris.

The turning point came when Ari's servants, George and Helen, told a friend they had been ordered to spend an endless evening in their rooms while Ari entertained and cooked for a "special guest" himself. Maria knew Aristo had been having affairs all along. But she knew intuitively that this incident was different. She remained agitated and anxious and began to find it impossible to sleep without taking pills.

She soon found out who the "special guest" was. The newspapers reported seeing Ari and Jackie Kennedy dining together at El Morocco, 21, Dionysis, and at Mykonos with Christina, Nureyev, and Margot Fonteyn. Gossips were already listing him amongst Jackie's possible suitors.

The crisis occurred when Maria returned to the Christina and Ari taught her to go back to Paris and wait for him there.

"Go to Paris?" She said. "Nobody stays in Paris in August. You must be mad."

"You have to go," he insured.

"I have to? What are you talking about?"

"I'm having a special guest aboard and you can not be here."

"Who could be so special that I can not be aboard?"

He did not answer, but it did not matter. Maria already knew the answer.

"Then I'm leaving you," she said.

"Do not be silly. I'll see you after the cruise is over in September," he said.

"No, Ari. You do not understand. I said I'm leaving you. You will never see me again." And she left, never to return.

Then on October 20, 1968, Maria got the news she had prayed she would never hear. Ari's butler called to tell her Aristotle and Kennedy were going to be married.

Maria did what she could to pass the time. She attended the opera next to Ghiringhelli, made a movie, taught a master class at Jiulliard. In the meantime, Ari was becoming disillusioned with Jackie's lavish buying sprees of jewelry and clothing and he was beginning to realize she was taking him for a fool. He kept calling and sending Maria flowers, but for a long time her pride was too hurt and she refused to talk with him. Finally in 1969 they met at a party and little by little, began to see each other again.

The climax came after they had spent four nights together when he took her to dine at Maxim's for the whole world to see. Maria was ecstatic, and believed Jackie was just another paramour to be forgotten. But the lady had other ideas. When she saw the newspaper photos of her husband and Maria dining together with blissful smiles, she was furious and flew immediately to his side. She advised he repeat the drama of the day before at Maxim's with her in Maria's place. The next day Maria was admitted to the American Hospital at Neuilly with the diagnosis of "overdose of barbiturates."

For the first time since Ari's marriage, Maria returned to Greece, this time as the guest of Perry Embiricos on his private island of Tragonisi in the Aegean. Perry was a friend of Onassis, who had introduced Maria to him. To her surprise who should show up on the island but Aristo! He blessed Maria with a kiss, and from then on they resumed their relationship.

Thus, surviving his marriage, Maria was able to hang on by the tips of her fingernails until March, 1975, when Onassis became critically ill with incurable myasthenia gravis.

Maria had been getting daily reports about his progress from the American Hospital in Paris, where he had gone for surgery. He never recovered consciousness, and was kept alive for five weeks by a respirator and intravenous feedings. Maria knew he was dying and she was not allowed to be by his side. The doctors said it could go on for weeks or even months. Her suffering was unendurable.

On March 12, she received her last report from the American Hospital. Aristo was dead.

Maria was slowly dying from the loss of her career. He had flashed into her life like a bolt of lightning across a dark summer sky; Where there'd been nothing suddenly there was Aristo. Her friends and staff were considerate, thoughtful, and loving. But it meant nothing, nothing. He was her core, her life. How could she live without him?

On September 16, 1977, at the age of 53, Maria Callas was found dead in her bed. The official story was that she died of a heart attack. But no autopsy was permitted, and her cremation took place almost immediately. Heart attack? Perhaps. But there are those of us who believe Maria when she said, "I've played heroines who die for love – and that's something I can understand."