Like Father Seraphim Rose said, there are indeed religions that have sought God in a true way. We cannot reproach them for this. I think the ancient Greeks even with all the foibles and foolishness of the gods were on the right track.
Read the pre-Socratics and there might just be an argument that Christianity was an upspring from those thinkers and not Judaism. Maybe the time was right? This is a mystery unfit for human understanding. But one thing I know, had He revealed Himself to the ancient ones, I know they would have put aside the truth as they knew it to accept the greater truth that is Christ. Still, there is something that tingles within the subterranean caverns of my being when I walk the Sacred Way.
I half wish I could become a mystes of that secret Mystery. The power in that truth is still palpable. I too would have walked the long road from the Dipylon to the Telesterion.
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I too would have waited in darkness for the hierophant to appear in radiant light from the darkness of Hades; I would have tasted the barley cake and drank of the kykeon. I too would have wailed the loss of the Kore. And then I would have been born into a new century, shaken off my chiton and bathed in the Light of Truth, that the Lord Jesus Christ is One forever and eternal. Glory be to Him. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.
Subscribe to get a daily creativity challenge sent to your in-box every morning. Research shows creativity creates well-being, resilience, centeredness, and more creativity! From art projects, to clay crafts, to raps and rhymes, journal entries, drama role plays, poetry—every day is another chance to get your creative juices flowing! Snap a pic and tag dailycreativitychallenge on Instagram and join our community of creatives. Skip to content The Mystery of Eleusis and Christ. And then on my Instagram feed I read a quote from St.
Moni Pentelis. The Double Life of a Diaspora Greek. Related articles. The Russian Orthodox Church in…. Quarterpounder or Jesus? Meditation on….
Laganes: From Unleavened to Unleavened…. Christmas: setting up lights in…. Prayer for Daybreak. Luke the Blessed Surgeon…. This Strange Rock: A Cosmic…. Those are categories of thought. So it depends on how much you want to think about it. So half the people in the world are religious people who think that their metaphors are facts. Those are what we call theists.
The other half are people who know that the metaphors are not facts. Those are the atheists. Campbell often described mythology as having a fourfold function within human society. These appear at the end of his work The Masks of God: Creative Mythology , as well as various lectures.
Various stages of cultural development have different yet identifiable mythological systems.
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In brief these are:. However, two barbarian incursions changed that. As the Indo-European Aryan people descended from the north and the Semites swept up from the Arabian desert, they carried with them a male dominated mythology with a warrior god whose symbol was the thunder. As they conquered, mainly due to the superior technology of iron smithing, their mythology blended with and subjugated the previous system of the Earth Goddess.
Journey to Eleusis: A Metaphorical Monomyth
Many mythologies of the ancient world, such as those of Greece, India, and Persia, are a result of that fusion with gods retaining some of their original traits and character but now belonging to a single system. Figures such as Zeus and Indra are thunder gods who now interact with Demeter and Dionysus , whose ritual sacrifice and rebirth, bearing testament to his pre-Indo-European roots, were still enacted in classical Greece. But for the most part, the focus heavily shifted toward the masculine, with Zeus ascending the throne of the gods and Dionysus demoted to a mere demi-god.
This demotion was very profound in the case of the Biblical imagery where the female elements were marginalized to an extreme. Campbell believed that Eve and the snake that tempted her were once fertility gods worshiped in their own rights with the tree of knowledge being the Tree of Life. There he observed that wheat was presented as the ultimate mystery with wine being a symbol of Dionysus, much like in the Christian mysteries where bread and wine are considered to incarnate the body and blood of Jesus.
Campbell believed that in the modern world the function served by formal, traditional mythological systems has been taken on by individual creators such as artists and philosophers. In the works of some of his favorites, such as Thomas Mann , Pablo Picasso and James Joyce , he saw mythological themes that could serve the same life-giving purpose that mythology had once played.
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