Saturday, April 17, 2010

Hellenism: What I Believe, What I Stand For

The following is adapted from the original Y.S.E.E. mission statement to reflect my own viewpoint. I agree with the organization on almost all points of its cosmology, except that which posits the God/esses are neither male nor female (I believe they are distinctly either male or female); and all points of its mission statement except those that are bitterly antagonistic to Judeo-Christian traditions. I have great affection for all religions, and though I have chosen to leave the tradition into which I was born, I will always bear it, and those who walk that path, great respect.

In that vein I would like to say that the God/esses are who they are, regardless of what names we use for them, and in their infinite love for us, they don't care what we call them, just so long as we keep calling.

This is the link to the original document, should you wish to compare my version to it:

-M. Ashley (Andjelagenia Musaios)

(What We Believe,
What We Stand For
by Kresphontis on behalf of Diipetes,
published on Green Egg journal, issue no 109, Summer 1995
Edited and adapted by M. Ashley, Spring 2010

Hellenism (ELLENIKON ETHNISMOS) is not simply a Religion and Cosmology, it is a certain form of human consciousness and an everyday ethos.

Hellenism perceives Cosmos (KOSMOS, i.e. the Universe) as an ever-existing Being, which not only was not created by some "creator" God out of nothing (EK TOU MEDENOS), but on the contrary allowed the Gods themselves to be created through its procedures. Hellenism understands Cosmos as APEIRON (Apeiron, Infinity) in great, wonderful order and therefore in Hellenic language Cosmos means also jewel (KOSMOS, KOSMENA). Gods were born inside the Cosmos and live inside it -they are part of it. This is our real dispute with Monotheism; not the number of Gods (One or Many, Mono- or Poly-) but where the God or Gods stand in relation to the Cosmos. For Monotheists the Cosmos was created by an ever-existing Being outside it (so in this macro-historical level it is nothing more than a mortal creation). For Monotheists Cosmos is a creation that has to obey the laws of its creator. For Hellenes, the eternal Cosmos emerges always from inside itself (ANADYETAI AFS EAUTOU) and is the creator of all Gods, which have to obey its laws. In the Hellenic Cosmology, these laws are :

ANTIPEPONTHOS: Untranslatable into English, but roughly meaning "all events influence others" though without "cause and effect",
NOMOS: The entirety of the universal physical Laws), and
ANAKE: Need and Fate, which all Gods respect and obey.

Due to the eternal nature of Cosmos itself, the Hellenic perception of KRONOS (Time) is not linear (as the followers of Yahweh or the modern rationalists declare), nor circular (as many Judeo-born occult dogmas teach) through the OUROBOROS symbol (the tail-eater snake), but spiral and leading to APEIRON. Through this shape of Time, the annual circles, the lunar circles, the human (and all) life, and the art of Prophecy, are fully interpreted. History is never repeated, just similar to the point that identical events happen but always under different circumstances. And the death of humans (and of all mortal forms of life) happens as the philosopher Alkmaion declared, simply "because it is impossible for the end of the circle to touch the beginning". In other words, because it is impossible for the old to become infants again.

For the Hellenic Tradition, or at least its part not yet influenced by the "moral" ideas brought over from eastern civilizations by such famous philosophers as Pythagoras and Plato, no such thing as the "karma" of the eastern theocrats exists, and no "judges" exist in the skies or elsewhere. All dead become automatically holy and then they are born again until through ARETE (Virtue) one day their PSYCHE escapes from the spiral of Time, thus becoming primitive God, DAIMON, a word with a positive meaning for Hellenes, in contrast with Judeo-Christian definitions. We do not believe in METEMPSYCHOSIS (Re-incarnation) suffering or prospering in this life to pay for or be rewarded for the bad or good actions of previous lives, but instead simply in PALIGENESIA (Rebirth). This perspective distinguishes us from the theocratic dogmas that terrify their believers with "punishments" etc. We love or hate completely outside karmic designs and dualisms. No dualism of "Good and Evil" exists in the Immortal Cosmos, nor such things as the miscellaneous "moralities" that all the dualistic dogmas teach. We become virtuous only because we choose to be such.

Our Gods are many and we understand them as completing the make-up of the Universal Sphere of Cosmos to its maximum potential and whole. Thus, from the DODEKAEDRON, a geometric shape (that fills up the sphere to its maximum) we imagine twelve planes, each one presenting a God inside the Cosmos and we define our Hellenic PANTHEON (PAN TON THEON, All The Gods) as DODEKATHEON (Pantheon of The Twelve Gods).The Twelve Gods of ours live inside the Sphere of Cosmos and form its various behaviors.

Our Twelve Gods are also called OLYMPIOI (the Olympians) not because, as many want to believe, they dwell on Mt. Olympus, as the mountains with this name numbered not one but eighteen throughout the Hellenic World. This is just a poetic conception, similar to the one that wants Pan to dwell in the forests of Arcadia. The word "Olympus" comes from the verb LAMPO (shining). Our Twelve Gods are the "Shining Ones", and the real "Olympus" is not a geographical but a spiritual place, where the Gods really exist.

Another fact worth noting is that these Twelve Gods are not the same Twelve Gods for all Hellenes as some leave Dionysos out, some leave Hestia, etc., replacing them with others. It is the number that counts, not the names of the Gods which in any case number in the thousands- and we must underline here that Hellenism honors and worships not only conscious forces and energies of Nature (as almost all Pagan religions do) but also abstract Ideas, such as Harmony, Eunomia (personified Order), Justice, Freedom, Beauty, Luck, etc. For us, the Ideas are alive and have form and consciousness; they are real deities that simply show themselves through the functions of the human mind.

A basic ("for beginners") form of invocation of the Twelve Olympian Gods, a Pantheon that was worshiped at least since the 16th Century before the Judeo-Christian Era (they are named U-ru-pa-ja-jo in the Linear B inscription of Pylos), and openly until the 9th Century of our times (when the last remains of worship of the ethnic Hellenic Gods were exterminated in Lakonia, under the persecutions by "Saint" Nikon the so-called "Metanoite" i.e. "Repent") is the following:

(The Gods are being invoked in "couples" according to the elements and functions that each "couple" supervises).

* Hestia (the power or denization and of common ethos: all invocations start and end with her:
* The honored God or Goddess of the Hellenic lunar month
* Hephaistos - Hestia
* Ares - Aphrodite
* Apollo - Artemis
* Hermes - Athena
* Poseidon - Demeter
* Hera - Zeus

Understanding the structure, nature and distribution of the Cosmos in this way, Hellenism can be understood as a political and social "how to" theory that means to fill the every day life with its principles of Dignity, Freedom, Beauty, Honesty, Variety, Tolerance, Candor..

We represent an ethos and a cosmology that never allowed the existence of priestly castes, unquestioning obedience, fear or guilt (Hellenism knows nothing about the word "sin"), dogma, missions, or "sacred" books. We know that we tread the correct path and that the Gods support us.

We are in full solidarity with all groups and movements all around the Globe, that work for the restoration of their traditional/indigenous ethos and religions, and also with all the others who fight the multi-faceted war for Freedom, Tolerance, Respect for Nature and Direct Democracy in all levels of every day life.

No comments:

Post a Comment