Sunday, January 18, 2015

Gamelia 2015


So, there have been some calendar changes since the Diogennia.  The Hephaestia has been postponed until Spring, and today was the Gamelia.  (Actually, today was always the Gamelia.  The listing in the last edition was in error.)



For today's ritual, we incorporated a telling of the myth of Zeus and Hera's courtship and wedding, which is also the origin myth for the institution of marriage.  Invocations from Peregrine Ursano's book In the Names of the Gods - Poems, Prayers, and Reflections upon the Hellenic Pantheon were used.  Theoxenia included chicken cordon-apple (chicken stuffed with ham, cheese, and apples), Italian wedding soup, chocolate cake, and wedding cake. 

Between courses of feasting, our Pagan Arts and Crafts session consisted of making Happy Hera Mojo Bags.

Fabric from Hera's wedding dress from last year
Ribbons that have been used in Hera's wedding garb in past years
Apple seeds (associated with Hera)
Amethyst chips (associated with Zeus for the "all-seeing" aspect as well as the priestly color and its connection to the planet Jupiter)
Jasmine flowers (associated with Zeus)
feathers (peacock or related colors if possible, associated with Hera)

Place the apple seed in the center of a 4-5 inch square of fabric
Add a pinch of dried jasmine
Add a chip or two of amethyst
Add a feather or two (may be enclosed inside or left poking out)
Tie the bag shut

If you do not have a previous year's wedding dress fabric or ribbons, you may wish to do a divination around what would be most pleasing to Her that you can access.

Set your intention for the bag, which may be to attract a partner or to bring happiness and stability into an existing marriage or other committed relationship, and ask for Hera's blessing on it.  If its purpose is to attract a partner into your life, then wearing it on your person would be ideal.  If its purpose is for an existing partnership, then keeping it in the bedroom or on a home shrine to Hera would be preferred. 

Coming up:
February 15 - Aphrodisia
Until then, may the peace of the Gods be with you.
The members of HTAZP

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Diogennia 2015

Khairete and Happy 2015!

Our first festival of the secular year was today, the Diogennia, Zeus' birthday.

We began with a meditation on Zeus' birthday via the Cretan myth before processing into the main Temple space.

Offerings for the feast included chicken a la king, ninja-bread cookies (that will make sense in a minute), honey-glazed donuts, honey sticks, and a gingerbread cake.

Ginger is sacred to Zeus and part of the myth is of Zeus being kept protected in a cave on the island of Crete, which was brilliantly lit.  So when our Hiereus found cookie cutters shaped like ninja warriors (seriously named "ninja-bread cookie cutters"), he decided they would help to decorate the birthday cake.  (Admittedly, Ninja warriors were native to a different island.)  Above they are shown guarding Zeus in lightning and/or snake form (also apparently called slightning).

We referenced Hearthstone's book, In Praise of Olympus, for various prayers during the ritual and also specifically invoked Zeus' following epithets:
Basilios - king
Megalos - great
Ktesios - house jar (of the home)
Oikos - of the house
Herkaios - of the boundaries

We also made Ktesios Jars, something we have often done for Diasia but which Hiereus Timotheos decided to incorporate today as this specific epithet of Zeus and means of honoring Him is the most universal.

Some things the jars have in common are oak moss, oak leaves, and olive oil, plus a number of other herbs and items depending upon what each person wished to either attract to or repel from their home, and then olive oil.  The purple and red yarn represents colors of royalty.

Do you have any particular practices or recipes that you do for the Diogennia?  Please answer in comments!

Our next festivals will be Hephaestia on January 11 and Gamelia/Theogamia on January 25.

Blessings of the Gods,