Sunday, March 22, 2015

Eiarinia 2015


May it be that Spring has finally sprung in New England?  It didn't look like it yesterday, but today we had a sunny and relatively warm day for ritual.  There is still snow on the ground, however, so it was indoors.

We actually did a combination of several Spring rites today, starting with the Diasia for Zeus Melikhios.

As has been our custom, we offered animal crackers as the "cakes in the shapes of animals" and offered a libation of milk as we offered our thanks for His protection through this winter filled with storms.

Once this offering was complete, we processed into the main temple space, where we honored Demeter, Persephone, Gaia, Apollon, Hyakinthos, Artemis, and Pan.

The Eiarinia Spring Festival encompasses Gaia, Demeter, and Persephone.  They were offered, respectively, Girl Scout cookies, bread, and peppers (a vegetable that is also a fruit, representing Persephone's role between two worlds).

Pan's Spring festival is the Poimeia, a modern festival in honor of Pan the God of Shepherds.  He received an offering of multi-colored cake.

Apollo and Hyakinthos were honored for the Hyakanthia.  Apollon was offered ground lamb (to stuff the peppers), and Hyakinthos was offered His flower.

Artemis's festivals are the Elaphabolia  and Mounikia, both of which celebrate her with offerings of cakes, either in the shapes of deer for the former or cakes "shining all around" for the latter, which were represented with the candle-lit cupcake in the offering bowl in the foreground.

We used invocations from Hearthstone's In Praise of Olympus:  Prayers to the Greek Gods, with each participant reading in turn.

Coming up:

Sunday, March 29, the Aphrodisia
Saturday, April 4, the Delphinia
Sunday, April 19, the Olympieia
Sunday, April 26, the Thargelia

Until next time, may the peace of the Gods be with you.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Hermathlon 2015


We're having quite the eventful winter in Southern New England, so the Aphrodisia, previously planned for February 15, has been postponed until March 29.  The Diasia, which we typically celebrate at the beginning of March, has been postponed until we have some clue that we are actually done with snow, as part of that festival is a "thanks for letting us survive the winter" element.

Today's Festival

Today, we celebrated the Hermathlon.  As a bonus, we inaugurated the Hellenic Temple of Hera, Hermes, and Dionysos, a daughter-temple of the Hellenic Temple of Apollon, Zeus, and Pan tended by Neokoros Peregrine Ursano.

The walls of this new space, as you can see, are adorned with original artwork and Theban blessings appropriate to each of the four Greek elements.  Other symbols are included as well.
We began outside this new space with a meditation to help us focus on Hermes as Lord of the Games and Luck-Bringer, then processed into the new space for thusia.  Offerings included tacos, bread sticks and a pig-shaped loaf of bread that was offered and shared within the ritual, and various munchies useful for nibbling during gaming such as chips, cookies, and raw veggies with dip.

Participants also received a million dollars from Hermes (in the form of a chocolate bar, seen above) as a representation of His blessings of good fortune.
Theoxenia and gaming was held in the HTAZP temple space which is a bit roomier.  For games, we chose Quibbler, which is a word game that can be compared to a cross between Scrabble and rummy, and Pictureka, a game in which you have to locate items on a changeable board within a time limit.
Do you have any thoughts on how to celebrate these aspects of Hermes?  Please share them in comments!

Coming Up

Our next festival is slated to be the Eiarinia on March 22.
May the peace of the Gods be with you.