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Body/Blood of Dionysus

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Body/Blood of Dionysus

Post  AgathonZante on Thu May 25, 2017 11:30 am

There are a number of Gods called Saviors in Greek religion, but Dionysus is often referred to as "The Savior God." In the book, The Golden Bough: The Roots of Religion and Folklore, the author Frazer talks about how worshipers of Dionysus would sometimes attack a bull (symbol of Dionysus) and eat the animal alive without cooking it, so that they could ingest the body and blood of the God. In the book, Greek Religion, Walter Burkert also talks about wine as being considered the blood of the vine. Is all this true, and if so, how could a modern Hellenist incorporate communion with Dionysus into their daily religious life?

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Re: Body/Blood of Dionysus

Post  Erodius on Sun May 28, 2017 5:31 pm

AgathonZante wrote:There are a number of Gods called Saviors in Greek religion, but Dionysus is often referred to as "The Savior God." In the book, The Golden Bough: The Roots of Religion and Folklore, the author Frazer talks about how worshipers of Dionysus would sometimes attack a bull (symbol of Dionysus) and eat the animal alive without cooking it, so that they could ingest the body and blood of the God. In the book, Greek Religion, Walter Burkert also talks about wine as being considered the blood of the vine. Is all this true, and if so, how could a modern Hellenist incorporate communion with Dionysus into their daily religious life?

Wine is a standard offering for nearly any divinity, and a portion of it can be consumed in the process of the offering by any worshipper; there should be no problem in that.

However, what you're describing is the omophagia rite, which really ought not to be done outside of proper instruction in esoteric and mystical cults. The minute details of the symbolism are very important, and, beyond that, it is much much more than a simple offering.

Consider that individual Catholics, for instance, do not practice the communion rite by themselves. It must be done by a priest and in the proper setting.

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Re: Body/Blood of Dionysus

Post  AgathonZante on Sun May 28, 2017 11:17 pm

I don't think anyone's going to be eating and drinking a raw cow today, therefore they'd obviously make reasonable changes.

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Re: Body/Blood of Dionysus

Post  Thrasyvoulos on Thu Jun 08, 2017 5:01 am

AgathonZante wrote:I don't think anyone's going to be eating and drinking a raw cow today, therefore they'd obviously make reasonable changes.

The Traditional Orphics of today do not sacrifice animals, period, so no bovine would be involved regardless. Deognotus' point still stands, though; such a communion rite as you're describing involves a practice known as theurgy. It is very involved, heavily dependent on the right kind of matter and the right kind of form of rite and intent, requiring knowledge of the symbola present in the mythological corpus surrounding Dionysus, and a proper understanding and cooperation with what theurgy is in general, as opposed to mere thaumaturgy or goetia. You need proper training to know what you're doing, or at best it simply won't really work like you want it to, and at worst can be hubris directed against the very God himself.

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