The Shadow of Olympus
Honoring The Blessed Gods of Olympus
Some work, some don't, yet.
Hellenismos is the religion of the ancient Greeks in its modern incarnation and the various ways it is currently followed by people in many parts of the world.
A polytheistic religion of the Indo-European type that accepts the existence of many Gods each of which has a variety of functions in the world and in the lives of their worshippers. As a non-dogmatic religion, it allows the practitioner to worship as they see fit within a framework of ritual and understanding of the aspects of the deities being worshipped. Hellenismos is also fairly open to syncretism, though in the main, Hellenismos is the religion of the Hellenic Gods, with the rest being accepted additions.
Who are the hellenic Gods, though?
It is a shame that the study of the classics has gone away in our schooling. We have turned away from an understanding of the philosophies and art of the ancient past to creating fodder for corporations, but even so, most people in the USA today get a minimal look at the history of Greece and, perhaps, touch just for a moment on the myths of the Greeks, which leaves them completely out of context, of course, but at least the name Zeus is not completely lost to the average person.
In the myths, the Olympian Gods are the children of Titans, who in turn are the children of the Protogonoi, the first born deities of the universe. There are similar myths all over the world, though certainly the Gods have different names and attributes to coincide with how the people of the world differ in their worship, but the story is not an unknown one to anyone who has heard of the religions of the world.
The religion of the Greeks is a mixture of a few elements, of course, from the Semitic Minoans to the Indo-European tribes and the indigenous pre-indo-european peoples of that land, but these are subjects for scholars, anthropologists, and historians to figure out. What we want is to worship the Gods as seen by the ancient Greek people, the Hellenes, and these Gods are as follows.
The Olympian Gods are, as I said, the children of the Titans, and they are Zeus, Poseidon, Demeter, Hera, and Hestia, and the children of Zeus, Apollo, Hermes, Athena, Artemis, Hephaestos, Ares, and the goddess whose parentage is debatable, Aphrodite. These lineages come to us from Homer and Hesiod who also acknowledge that this pantheon is fluid, because other deities, like Dionysos and the Hero Herakles, have special and powerful places in the hierarchy of divinity as well as the enormous number of other deities, including Hekate, Selene, and Helios who were worshipped sincerely and with due ritual in many parts of Greece.
This site, then, is about the GodsI worship and why, and that list is as follows:
- Zeus, the sky father
- Hera, queen of heaven
- Apollo, lord of healers, music, art, hunter, and leader of the Muses
- Athena, lady of wisdom, war, strategy, and goddess of heroes
- Demeter, Mother of the Corn
- Poseidon, Lord of the Sea
- Hermes, lord of travelers, messengers, and psychopomp (leader of ghosts)
- Hestia, lady of the home and of the hearth
- Ares, lord of war and of protection of the state
- Aphrodite, lady of love, of lust, of beauty
- Hephaestos, lord of smiths, of metalurgy, and volcanos
- Artemis, lad of the beasts, of the wilds, huntress, protector of children, and a moon goddess
- Selene, lady of the moon
- Hekate, lady of the pathways, lighter of the way, protector of children, and protector against supernatural forces
- Helios, lord of the sun
- Persephone, queen of the underworld, lady of the seed
- Hades, king of the underworld, lord of riches
- Dionysos, lord of the vine, of wine, and of ecstatic revelations
These are my Gods.
But do not be misled by this. This list is not common to all Hellenistoi. Not everyone worships the same exact Gods or does so in the same ways, but among the many Gods of the Greeks, these are the most commonly seen in the poetry, hymns, and blog posts of Hellenistoi throughout the world because they are the stars of the surviving mythos and they are the ones that were often worshipped in many parts of Greece, making them the Pan-Hellenic Gods, meaning the Gods of all the Greeks.
Poetry, Hymns, and Mantras
I have been known to write a piece or two of short poetry, hymns, and short mantras that I try to run through a translator into Greek and then correct as best I can. I am sometimes aided by Greek speakers who help me iron them out, and then use them in short prayers and mantras I may sing to myself. This section is something of a link page to pages where the actual poems and such may be found, and I am working on getting them better organized so you can better find what you need. It could take me some time. Turns out I have written a fair number of them over the years...
We are modern people, we Pagans, and we adapt modern technology in service to our belief, our worship, and our desire to communicate with each other.
The Twitter feed is called @HellenicPrayer and it is a feed of short (140 characters or less) prayers and the occasional link to a book or somesuch. The prayers are Hellenic only and include the Olympian, Titanic, and all manner of lesser divinities and mythological figures.
The Google+ page is a Google Community named Hellenismos. It is currently small and kind of quiet, but we can change that.
My facebook presence is a facebook group named Panhuman Hellenismos, and the implication is that all people are welcome no matter what race, nationality, or religion of origin they come from. I found that many lof the Hellenic Groups on facebook included some rather unsavory, racist people (not the norm at all for most Hellenismos communities, I assure you, but something about facebook just brought out the nuts)
To that end you will find me on these social sites.