The God Who Comes: Dionysian Mysteries Reclaimed

The God Who Comes: Dionysian Mysteries Reclaimed

The God Who Comes: Dionysian Mysteries Reclaimed

The God Who Comes: Dionysian Mysteries Reclaimed

Synopsis

The Eleusinian Mysteries were the most widely acclaimed and influential religious cult in the ancient Greek world. For almost 2000 years, the Mystery Rites of Dionysos and associated Hellenic deities drew participants from Rome, Egypt and all around the Mediterranean, influencing and inspiring many of the greatest minds including Aristotle, Homer and Plutarch. The God Who Comes is a meticulously researched exploration of how and why these rites were performed, based upon archaeological, scholarly, and iconographic evidence - a refutation of facile New Age inventions.

Excerpt

This book began nearly ten years ago, from the desire to determine — as accurately as historically possible — exactly how ancient and Classical adherents of Hellene Mystery Deities performed their worship. I understood why they should wish to worship these Deities, as I myself shared that impulse: What I did not understand, and proposed to amend with The God Who Comes…, was how the rituals were related chronologically; why it seemed that many aspects of ritual action were unclear or appeared transposed; and why no scholar intent upon probing the hows and wherefores of ancient Mystery rites had ever presented them in any sort of chronological, easily-understood manner. the writing of this book has ended in the same spirit in which it has begun, but I now have a much deeper understanding of both how and why our Hellene forebears worshipped as they did — based upon archaeological, scholarly, and iconographic evidence, as opposed to prevailing New Age fictions. in this book I have attempted to share the easier understanding of these deeper meanings with all who are interested in them.

I have also attempted to describe how each ritual was performed. However, I have avoided a cookbook-type “do this, then do that” format, as such a format ultimately confuses more than it enlightens, and imposes an author’s own strictures upon material which, by its very nature, is open to various levels of interpretation. As Kerenyi noted in Dionysos, (350): “Only where there was no set place for the mysteries — no setting hallowed from time immemorial as was the Boukoleion in Athens — a place had to be sought and the setting created.”

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