Religion in ancient Greece. Gods. Part Three.
If the previous articles of the Greek gods, was described gods of Mount Olympus (the so-called Olympic) now will talk about the gods of sea and of underground.
And I’ll start with the most powerful sea god, brother of Zeus, the mighty Poseidon (Neptune). I remember when I was little and rested in the Crimea on the Black Sea, there was held an interesting “celebration of Neptune” – dedication of people in the watery element, various competitions, fun, mermaids and devils.
Poseidon – god of the sea, and the water, the patron of sailors, the world is ruled by water from the depths of sea. When not in the mood, Poseidon, the sea raging storms and giant waves rise up, but when he’s in a good mood, the sea is calm and gentle. Next to him, sitting on the throne his faithful wife – Amfitrida.
And this is it. Interesting sculpture of Neptune and Amfitridy as fountains for centuries stand in the market square of the ancient city of Lviv.
The third brother of Zeus and Poseidon is gloomy Hades (aka Pluto) – lord of the underworld of the dead. In addition to controlling the kingdom of the dead, Hades likes to wear his favorite cap of darkness and walk unnoticed among the people (maybe he beside you sitting somewhere, you never know …)
That’s the name of that god takes Russian word – “Hell.” According to the beliefs of the Greeks, to Hades the souls of men after death. Hades is very different and much has various divisions and departments. There are departments for sinners where they make all kinds of torture, but the righteous enter the Paradise Gardens, which are also in Hades, and there enjoy bliss. Two Rivers is in the realm of the dead: the Styx and Lethe. Once a person is dying to get into the abode of the dead he has to cross the river Styx, for that you have to pay the ferryman Charon for the crossing. (And there is also doing business)
The painting Charon carries souls of the dead across the River Styx. The ancient Greeks, at the burial of the dead, the custom – to put in the coffin with the dead, some small money – the fee the ferryman Charon for the crossing. Sometimes souls are born again, for this they have to swim across the river of oblivion oblivion, only touching the water is, the soul forgets all he knows, and is born again, like a blank sheet. These are the beliefs of the ancient Greeks about reincarnation.
Close to Hades sits on the throne his wife – the beautiful Persephone.
Persephone, daughter of Demeter – the goddess of agriculture and fertility, was abducted by Hades, who took a beautiful wife. Only a quarter of the year Persephone is with her husband in the underworld, and the rest of the time she is staying on the surface of her mother Demeter. When Persephone is in Hades, Demeter, that embodies nature, greatly missed, therefore, according to the beliefs of the Greeks, the winter comes.
Also in the underworld Hades live two gods-brothers: Hypnos and Thanatos. Senior Thanatos – God of Death, Jr. Hypnosis – the god of sleep, I think, is very symbolic.
And these three ladies are known as Moira. Moira – goddess of fate, the fate of each of us, they spin on a huge spindle fate. Moira Clotho gives life, creates a new destiny, Moira Lachesis spins the thread of our destinies, measuring out the length and then what our fate will develop. Moira Atropos (the one that with a pair of scissors) cuts the thread of our destiny, when the time comes, then comes death.
Mom unforgiving Moir is known goddess of justice and fairness – Themis, which often portray the blind – a very good hint of what fairness and justice (especially in Ukraine) are not the same.
The Greek goddess Themis blindfold, scales in one hand and a sword in the other (the punishing sword of justice) and today remains a symbol of our far from perfect vessels. But maybe once the situation is corrected, we will hope for the best.
This concludes the legend of the Greek gods, thank you for your attention.