Saturday, February 22, 2014


Well, that's done.  I don't think I quite hit the mood called for in the ancient texts (στυγιωτης: Στυξ-like, gloomy chill).  Being that this was my first home fire offering, my mood had more to do with fear and worry than anything else.  In the process, I did set off two deparate fire alarms in the apartment, having to pause the ritual to flap at them until they shut up.  However, this fear has a certain, wholly separate resonance to the River Στυξ, I would think.  Though surviving Greek texts don't record the sort of fear of the afterlife that, say, many Christians express -- depicting the underworld more as a bleak expanse of grayness and boredom -- I imagine that image of the afterlife must have provoked not a few fearful feelings!

Regardless: the Διασια ritual.  I went out and bought a small packet of animal crackers to give to Ζευς Μειλιχιος as the ancient texts say that cakes in the shape of animals were given to him on this day.  Ζευς Μειλιχιος is a chthonic aspect of Ζευς, one more associated with the ground (and beneath it; this is Ζευςin the form of a Πλουτος, a wealth god of mined preciousnesses).  Which means that his sacrifice is a holocaust, one in which the wholeness of the offering is given to the flames.

A little unknowledgeable in the fullness of Greek reconstructionist ritual, I simply lit a fire of paper in a saucepot and began talking to the god.  I hope to do more in the future, but right now my goal is to do something for these festivals.  The perfect can be the enemy of the good (or in this case, the at all), as they say.  I spoke to Ζευς Μειλιχιος, asking three things of him:

  1. That I might soon find myself in a healthy living situation with a stable financial situation to support it.
  2. That any curse that I may have upon me and that the μιασμα of any crime (known or unknown) that I might bear be removed.
  3. That I do well in my observance of these holy days.
All these things I asked of him by my remembrance of his ancient festival and by the loveliness of Antinous, who walks when I walk.

After offering the animal crackers, I poured some milk into the fire, as a wineless offering is traditional.  I then let the active flames burn down, before covering the pot and putting the fire out.

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