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Monday, February 12, 2007

By Jove, I Think They've Got It

The modern world can be overwhelming.

When it gets you down, what do you do? Many folks reach deep back into the past. Way into the past.

And some of those people recently made news in Greece.

CNN reported online a few weeks ago that in Athens, the worship of Zeus is making a comeback. Yes, you read that right; after more than 16 centuries, public religious ceremonies venerating Greece’s king of the gods—later known to the Romans as Jupiter or Jove—have resumed.

The celebration at the ruins of an ancient temple actually looked like fun … or at least like a scene from the 1981 movie Clash of the Titans or the Hercules TV show from the 1990s. The Zeus followers released doves, burned incense, poured wine, and chanted, all while wearing swanky period-piece robes.

Many Greek Orthodox churchgoers joined the Ministry of Culture—which had declared the site off limits—in looking askance at the gathering. It seems they wanted to uphold the legacy of the Christianized Romans, who banned the pagans’ practices back in the fourth century and drove the Zeus worshippers underground.

Not anymore.

That’s because the Greek government has recognized Ellinais—the movement behind the revival—as a religion. That’s a good step, even though with fewer than 40 members, the group may need a while to reverse the damage done by almost 2,000 years of persecution and disrespect.

Call me an optimist, but I’m guessing the group’s membership will grow quickly—especially in the United States.

After all, Zeus’s favorite tree was the oak—not only a representation of strength but also a symbol of America.

There’s too much dishonesty and cheating in the U.S., and Zeus could help out. Back in the day, he punished deceptive traders in the marketplace and his followers forced exposed liars to dedicate statues to him.

And in times when leaks dominate our news, we could use the help of Zeus—who dispatched the Harpies to torture Phineus after he dared reveal the secrets of the gods.

We’ve got a big election coming up next year. All you candidates had better tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

Either that or keep your eyes open for thunderbolts.

27 Comments:

At February 12, 2007 6:28 PM, Blogger Janet replied to my musings ...

If this means hailing the great Feta Cheese, it's all good.

 
At February 12, 2007 8:45 PM, Blogger Darrin replied to my musings ...

What about all those island people in Micronesia who worship WWII bomber pilots?

Maybe instead of Zeus or Jesus we should be worshipping Captain Jack Sheldrake... Jesus may have been able to walk on water and Zeus may have been King of the Gods but Captain Jack brought Spam to Micronesia, feeding hudreds and getting to give up their cannibalistic habits! MMMM

Actually Christopher Moore touched on this with his novel, Island of the Sequined Love Nun...

 
At February 12, 2007 9:21 PM, Blogger Mike replied to my musings ...

Hmmm, bringing back Zeus, a title for a new History Channel show. Don't forget all the other tricks Zeus had. This could make retro movements totally modern again. A good day for the marketing departments.

As long as we can get people in power to stop worshipping Janus...

 
At February 13, 2007 10:37 AM, Blogger KC replied to my musings ...

I'm ready for the new Mount Olympus. Bring on the gods... only I'll need a list of them because there are so many and I forgot what power each of them has. I wouldn't want to be praying to the wrong god, you know.

 
At February 13, 2007 1:44 PM, Blogger Tai replied to my musings ...

I'm all for more thunderbolts!
(As long as they're not aimed at me!)

 
At February 13, 2007 3:19 PM, Blogger Bloggy Bloggerton replied to my musings ...

This comment has been removed by the author.

 
At February 13, 2007 3:49 PM, Blogger David Amulet replied to my musings ...

Janet: Mmmmm, feta ... now you've distracted me for the day.

Darrin: As long as we're nominating potential deities, I suggest that we pick that one caveman from the Geico ad where he is on the airport moving sidewalk accompanied by Royksopp's insanely catchy "Remind Me."

Mike: Great line on Janus. Unfortunately, there's no shortage of two-faced people almost anywhere you look.

KC: I think Hades was god of the underworld, Dionysus was god of wine, and Amulet was god of irregular blogging.

Tai: I guess that depends on whether "thunderbolt" is being used as a euphemism.

Comment deleted: You have us all so curious ...

-- david

 
At February 13, 2007 4:59 PM, Blogger Curare_Z replied to my musings ...

ohh...sign me up. I'm all for togas...

 
At February 13, 2007 9:43 PM, Blogger The Phoenix replied to my musings ...

I have a feeling the upcoming elections are going to be a Clash of the Titans.

Hillary does resemble Medusa.

 
At February 13, 2007 9:52 PM, Blogger Lee Ann replied to my musings ...

I think we stand a better chance for thunderbolts!!!!

Happy Valentine's Day cutie!
~xo

 
At February 13, 2007 10:27 PM, Blogger :P fuzzbox replied to my musings ...

I always liked the fact that the Greeks gave their gods human weaknesses and foibles. That and it seemed like their gods were always up for a good Olympian orgy.

 
At February 14, 2007 2:14 AM, Blogger Paige Burns replied to my musings ...

One of the local shock jocks here in town constantly talk about being followers of Zeus, though I think they mainly use it to get to chicks.

 
At February 14, 2007 6:57 AM, Blogger etain_lavena replied to my musings ...

Sounds kewl....I can do chanting....whoohooo....:)

 
At February 14, 2007 7:23 AM, Blogger Stacy The Peanut Queen replied to my musings ...

Oh good God...if I had a thunderbolt for every crooked politician out there...well, there just wouldn't be any thunderbolts or politicians left in the world.

:(

 
At February 14, 2007 10:13 AM, Blogger David Amulet replied to my musings ...

Curare: And now the toga can be your old size!

Phoenix: Looking at Hilary may turn many of us to stone; apparently, Bill looked at her and went limp.

Lee Ann: Let the thunderstorm begin.

Fuzz: That's why I'm looking into an Allinais membership.

Paige: It worked for Zeus--didn't he impregnatee about half of Greece back in the day?

Etain: Chanting rocks. Good for foreplay.

PQ: There would be two: Stewart and Colbert. Of course, I'm assuming that the Stewart-Colbert '08 t-shirt that Curare gave me correctly predicts a White House run next year.

-- david

 
At February 14, 2007 1:18 PM, Blogger On My Watch replied to my musings ...

If Hillary gets in there I'll be the first one to yell Release the Kracken!

Mainly, because there aren't enough situations in everyday conversation to be able to yell such a thing. People think you're crazy or something, especially when you roll the R. :)

 
At February 14, 2007 1:24 PM, Blogger Godwhacker replied to my musings ...

Give me a call if these revised gods get out of line.

Διώνυσος rules!

 
At February 14, 2007 6:33 PM, Blogger DaBich replied to my musings ...

Anything under those togas?????
:X
Happy Valentine's Day, David!

 
At February 14, 2007 10:36 PM, Anonymous Bruce replied to my musings ...

I'm all for Zeus making a comeback, as long as Xena and Gabrielle are there, too.

 
At February 15, 2007 6:25 PM, Blogger David Amulet replied to my musings ...

OMW: You'd be surprised how often I hear that. And no--not ALWAYS during sex.

GW: You'll be the first to know if they act up.

Dabich: What's under my toga is between me ... and about 13,874 people. As of 6:21 p.m. tonight.

Bruce: Exactly! What good are the Greek gods without scantily clad goddesses and assorted willing vixens?

-- david

 
At February 15, 2007 7:57 PM, Blogger On My Watch replied to my musings ...

LOL. (liar - it is always.)

 
At February 16, 2007 4:22 PM, Blogger Phats replied to my musings ...

This is very interesting I shall start worshipping Zeus immediately!

 
At February 16, 2007 10:12 PM, Blogger ChickyBabe replied to my musings ...

We need a Blogger god to worship. But no vestal virgins...

 
At February 17, 2007 7:32 AM, Blogger Ray Van Horn, Jr. replied to my musings ...

Certainly it couldn't be Zeus, the wrassler that Hulk Hogan had to go up against in that ridiculous tripe No Holds Barred. Of course, in this day and age, whatever publicity for the real Zeus (ugh, did I just say real?) will only broaden his appeal. Personally, I say all hail the Mighty Groundhog Roaster with all of this maddening winter ice...

 
At February 17, 2007 8:25 AM, Anonymous LisaBinDaCity replied to my musings ...

Actually at this point in my life, the only thing I want to worship is the sun ;-)

 
At February 17, 2007 11:39 AM, Blogger David Amulet replied to my musings ...

OMW: I never lie about sex. Or krackens.

CB: If deities make their worshippers in their image, I really don't want to see the Blogger god.

Ray: The groundhog has my vote.

Lisa: I'm all for bringing Apollo back into the mix, too. Sadly, he's not only the god of the sun but also the god of skin cancer.

-- david

 
At February 17, 2007 2:57 PM, Blogger dragonflyfilly replied to my musings ...

Zeus lives next door to me!

 

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