Hedonist priorities….

Thoughts consume me, so I took put every variety of incense I own, libated some Perrier, and asked to use one of the bargaining chips I was offered at the beginning.

might seem petty to some, but the sensual feeds the ascetic. Inhn spite of some of the recent hardships, I am happier now than I have been in a long time, but last week reminded me that I missed something.

You see, the sensual feeds the ascetic.

I want this. I hope I don’t need reinforcement.

Beauty is pleasure.

Pleasure is wisdom.

To possess beauty is to touch Life.

I will pray daily for this, even after I have it, for it will be proof to me that Life has touched me and wanted me whole.

About Ruadhán McElroy

Ruadhán has been a traditional Hellenic polytheist for about a decade, and has also maintained devotions to Eros and Apollon most of that time; his status as a devotee of Nyx is more recent. He also paints, makes music, makes jewellery, and writes novels set in the Mod Revival (UK) and Swampie (Oz) subcultures of the 1980s. He also gets a lot of odd little experiences that he jokes will forever render him an insufferable Goth.

Eros and Psykhe in song

Mortals hubristicly compare Psyke to a beauty greater than Aphrodite

Aphrodite orders Eros to curse Psykhe’s affections

Eros cannot shoot Psykhe

Zephyros takes Psykhe to Eros crystal castle

Psykhe’s first night with her unseen husband

Psykhe’s sisters cast a seed of mistrust

Psykhe plots to see her husband

Psyke sees

The oil scorches Eros’ flesh

Psykhe cast out:

Psykhe’s trials

Redemption

Apotheosis

Hedone

(selections made more on overall feeling than necessarily lyrical content)


while I have your attention: Were you aware that I only have $170 to go to meet my goal in fundraising for moving next week? I have less than a week to go! I pick up my key on Monday and haul my stuff to Ypsilanti on Wednesday!

About Ruadhán McElroy

Ruadhán has been a traditional Hellenic polytheist for about a decade, and has also maintained devotions to Eros and Apollon most of that time; his status as a devotee of Nyx is more recent. He also paints, makes music, makes jewellery, and writes novels set in the Mod Revival (UK) and Swampie (Oz) subcultures of the 1980s. He also gets a lot of odd little experiences that he jokes will forever render him an insufferable Goth.

Belated post-PLC entry

(I wrote this on the train from Poughkeepsie back to Toledo, on my way back to Lansing, MI, after the Polytheist Leadership Conference, but it got lost in my bag, and I figured I’d posg it, now.)

I did want to mention something that came up during the second Dionysos ritual: I mentioned already that in the first ritual, thing went a little weird for me. During the first ritual, there was a period where people were encouraged to dance, to shout, or otherwise just praise Dionysos in whatever manner seemed best. I then heard Eros’ voice:

“Let go, flower. I’ve always been with you, I always will be, but you’ve been borderline henotheist, lately. I’m not that possessive. Just let go.”

Then from Sannion: “Let go to Dionysos….”

Coincidence? Possibly, though an awfully uncanny one, I should say. I mentioned this to Sannion afterward and he seemed impressed by the timing, to say the least.

I brought this up at the later ritual, during the period for Dionysos stories (before the actual rit, I had a Derek Jarman story to share, you might have heard of it, and I will share that one, later), and then one of my friends made a well-meaning joke, cos I guess my paraphrasing of “gave me the OK to play with other gods every so often” opened it up for “we should see other people” type comments. this seemed headed down a problematic turn, so I saw a need to end it when another person said “it’s not him, it’s you”:

“OK, stop. there are boundaries to take down, and there are boundaries that are there for a reason. Don’t cross that line.”

It’s not a line I think can be joked about, but don’t worry, no-one is “in trouble” cos I worded myself poorly. I may have been less-than-clear in the post, and I know I don’t talk about it much, openly, but I’m Eros’ Property. If I were a female-gendered or perhaps GQ-identified femme person, I might use the word “wife”, but I’m not, so I don’t. I’m not exactly “husband” or “spouse” material”, in my opinion, and that’s one of the few things I get to negotiate with Him, is what I call myself.

I took my beauty mark piercing in lieu of a ring. As soon as I can justify the expense, I’m getting that ring I found on Etsy, the one with raw rose quartz, and tattooing one of His symbols, along with symbols of His mother, wife, and sisters on my wrist. I’m going to get another piercing on mu left ear and have it linked to my nostril ring with a delicate chain.

It’s true, though. It’s true, though. I’ve been acting like a borderline Henotheist this last couple years, and it hasn’t been working, for me. As I said to someone after the second rit: “It’s like when you get married; Healthy people still hang out with and talk to their friends, at least as their schedule allows, and less-healthy people drop all other socialisation for their spouse.” Now, OK, for some people, that might work, and Henotheism clearly works fir some, but a square peg is a poor fit for a round hole, right? As a polytheist, it may be very unhealthy to focus completely on one deity, and while I wasn’t quite that narrowly-focused, for myself, it wasn’t that much better.

Basically, though, there’s a fibre in my thread that is permanently gilded by Eros. My thread may cross with other people, and I will certainly dance with other Theoi, but we’re bonded, permanently.


About Ruadhán McElroy

Ruadhán has been a traditional Hellenic polytheist for about a decade, and has also maintained devotions to Eros and Apollon most of that time; his status as a devotee of Nyx is more recent. He also paints, makes music, makes jewellery, and writes novels set in the Mod Revival (UK) and Swampie (Oz) subcultures of the 1980s. He also gets a lot of odd little experiences that he jokes will forever render him an insufferable Goth.

Love-in-a-Mist

love-in-a-mist_by_lin-bullock

Nigella damascena (love-in-a-mist, ragged lady) is an annual garden flowering plant, belonging to the buttercup family Ranunculaceae. It is native to southern Europe (but adventive in more northern countries of Europe), north Africa and southwest Asia, where it is found on neglected, damp patches of land.

The specific epithet damascena relates to Damascus in Syria. The plant’s common name comes from the flower being nestled in a ring of multifid, lacy bracts. It is also sometimes called devil-in-the-bush. (from Wikipedia)

At the end of Psykhe’s trials, for a brief time She became lost in the mashlands, wandering and abandoning hope of returning to Eros’ crystal castle, much less finding favour with Him or His oldest friend, Aphrodite, again. Then She saw the flower and recognised it as one of Eros’. Psykhe asked a nearby bird where it came from, and the bird replied that they grew from her Father’s tears, and Psykhe then realised that She must not be far from the home of Her husband, for tears never scatter far from where they originate.


About Ruadhán McElroy

Ruadhán has been a traditional Hellenic polytheist for about a decade, and has also maintained devotions to Eros and Apollon most of that time; his status as a devotee of Nyx is more recent. He also paints, makes music, makes jewellery, and writes novels set in the Mod Revival (UK) and Swampie (Oz) subcultures of the 1980s. He also gets a lot of odd little experiences that he jokes will forever render him an insufferable Goth.

Thought I had whilst on a booze-related discussion pre-PLC

The Romans believed that the liver was the source of human emotion.

The ancient Hellenes may have known, as evidenced via the myth of Prometheus, that the liver can regenerate from damage.

In the myth of Prometheus, His liver is eaten by a large bird. (Depending on the regional variant, the exact bird may differ.)

Via Aristophanes, Eros is the father / creator of all birds.

From this, we can say that when Love leaves our emotions damaged, we can still heal. Or, if you prefer, Love alone won’t leave us irreparably damaged.

About Ruadhán McElroy

Ruadhán has been a traditional Hellenic polytheist for about a decade, and has also maintained devotions to Eros and Apollon most of that time; his status as a devotee of Nyx is more recent. He also paints, makes music, makes jewellery, and writes novels set in the Mod Revival (UK) and Swampie (Oz) subcultures of the 1980s. He also gets a lot of odd little experiences that he jokes will forever render him an insufferable Goth.

30 Days of Devition: 11 ~ Festivals, days, and times sacred to Eros

I’ve written a lot about the Feast of Eros, so go read that, if you haven’t, yet. This is set for 4 Thioyios of the New Boeotian calendar (sunset 3 April of the Gregorian calendar, this year).

Dr Susan Block has created “Eros Day“, and the date is selected for when the planetoid Eros, an asteroid belt object that has actually been studied to learn more about the origins of the solar system, is at its closest to Earth. This is usually 20 January, by the Gregorian calendar.

While i honestly have no personal problem with people deciding to honour Eros on St. Valentine’s Day, and I can certainly argue a folk-religion justification connecting Chaucer’s referencing to birds finding a mate in 14 February with the creation of birds by Eros (as per Aristophanes), but honestly, I haven’t started doing this just yet. This last eight years, i’ve actually actively abstained from honouring Eros on St. Valentine’s day simply because it’s been far too commercialised and just plain hokey, and not at all related to Eros as I know Him. Actually, mentioning the thing about the birds, I’m going to meditate on that and hopefully return to the topic of a festival honouring Eros’ position as the father of the birds, later.

I also honour Eros on the fourth-to-last day of the year, by the New Boeotian Calendar, as the anniversary of the date I bonded myself to Him in 2009. The date was chosen by Him, and I celebrate by soaking pieces of quince in wine, giving Him the first piece, and performing several divinations for guidance in the year to come –at least that’s the part of it I can talk about. This year, I plan on making quince preserves as a part of this ritual, at least a preparation for it, but it depends largely on finding good quince in-season.

  1. A basic introduction of Eros
  2. How did I become first aware of Eros?
  3. Symbols and icons of Eros
  4. A favorite myth or myths of Eros
  5. Members of the family – genealogical connections
  6. Other related deities and entities associated with Eros
  7. Names and epithets
  8. Variations on Eros
  9. Common mistakes about Eros
  10. Offerings – historical and UPG
  11. Festivals, days, and times sacred to Eros
  12. Places associated with this deity and their worship
  13. What modern cultural issues are closest to this deity’s heart?
  14. Has worship of this deity changed in modern times?
  15. Any mundane practices that are associated with this deity?
  16. How do you think this deity represents the values of their pantheon and cultural origins?
  17. How does this deity relate to other gods and other pantheons?
  18. How does this deity stand in terms of gender and sexuality? (historical and/or UPG)
  19. What quality or qualities of this god do you most admire? What quality or qualities of them do you find the most troubling?
  20. Art that reminds you of this deity
  21. Music that makes you think of this deity
  22. A quote, a poem, or piece of writing that you think this deity resonates strongly with
  23. Your own composition – a piece of writing about or for this deity
  24. A time when this deity has helped you
  25. A time when this deity has refused to help
  26. How has your relationship with this deity changed over time?
  27. Worst misconception about this deity that you have encountered
  28. Something you wish you knew about this deity but don’t currently
  29. Any interesting or unusual UPG to share?
  30. Any suggestions for others just starting to learn about this deity?

About Ruadhán McElroy

Ruadhán has been a traditional Hellenic polytheist for about a decade, and has also maintained devotions to Eros and Apollon most of that time; his status as a devotee of Nyx is more recent. He also paints, makes music, makes jewellery, and writes novels set in the Mod Revival (UK) and Swampie (Oz) subcultures of the 1980s. He also gets a lot of odd little experiences that he jokes will forever render him an insufferable Goth.

30 Days of Devition: 9 ~ Common Mistakes about Eros

“Eros is all sweetness and love.” Eros is Love, Desire, even Longing, but Sweetness, He is not.

“Eros is a merry trickster.” I’ve learned one thing about deities with a trickster aspect from others who have a relationship with tricksters –tricksters are not merry and playful. Tricksters only look cute, and not all of Them.

“Eros is only about love and sex and escort directories and lube.” Er, no. No. I hope that if you’ve found this blog, you at least have a vague understanding of that.

  1. A basic introduction of Eros
  2. How did I become first aware of Eros?
  3. Symbols and icons of Eros
  4. A favorite myth or myths of Eros
  5. Members of the family – genealogical connections
  6. Other related deities and entities associated with Eros
  7. Names and epithets
  8. Variations on Eros
  9. Common mistakes about this deity
  10. Offerings – historical and UPG
  11. Festivals, days, and times sacred to this deity
  12. Places associated with this deity and their worship
  13. What modern cultural issues are closest to this deity’s heart?
  14. Has worship of this deity changed in modern times?
  15. Any mundane practices that are associated with this deity?
  16. How do you think this deity represents the values of their pantheon and cultural origins?
  17. How does this deity relate to other gods and other pantheons?
  18. How does this deity stand in terms of gender and sexuality? (historical and/or UPG)
  19. What quality or qualities of this god do you most admire? What quality or qualities of them do you find the most troubling?
  20. Art that reminds you of this deity
  21. Music that makes you think of this deity
  22. A quote, a poem, or piece of writing that you think this deity resonates strongly with
  23. Your own composition – a piece of writing about or for this deity
  24. A time when this deity has helped you
  25. A time when this deity has refused to help
  26. How has your relationship with this deity changed over time?
  27. Worst misconception about this deity that you have encountered
  28. Something you wish you knew about this deity but don’t currently
  29. Any interesting or unusual UPG to share?
  30. Any suggestions for others just starting to learn about this deity?

About Ruadhán McElroy

Ruadhán has been a traditional Hellenic polytheist for about a decade, and has also maintained devotions to Eros and Apollon most of that time; his status as a devotee of Nyx is more recent. He also paints, makes music, makes jewellery, and writes novels set in the Mod Revival (UK) and Swampie (Oz) subcultures of the 1980s. He also gets a lot of odd little experiences that he jokes will forever render him an insufferable Goth.

30 Days of Devotion: 8 ~ Variations on Eros

This has been one of the harder ones for me to answer, because while I know this can include “aspects” –and that can include the way that Waitress and Mother are both aspects of the character Christie on the sit-com Mom— I’ve clearly had people misunderstand what this blog is about and what I believe, and there is little that bothers me more than being misunderstood, having my words and ideas taken out of context, and twisted into something I nevef meant nor intended. This is something that has bothered me since I was a child, and I’ve actually gotten better about it in recent years (yes, I have –if you think I’ve been nasty to Halstead and others for twisting my words around in the last four or five years, trust me, you wouldn’t’ve known what to make of me when I was sixteen, twenty, twenty-four…).

No, I don’t believe that Cupid or Amor are Rome’s local forms of Eros. I don’t believe that Aegnus Og is the Irish form of Eros. And so on. I believe that they have common grounds, but these are as much the same deity as my humanoid meat-based housemate and I are the same person on the grounds that we split the rent.

I also have a very hard time accepting the notion of the putto, the “chubby winged baby”, as a valid form of Eros on anything more than historical grounds. I get that this became a dominant “form of Eros” later in antiquity, but it’s not one that I relate to at all, and is one I have never known.

  1. A basic introduction of Eros
  2. How did I become first aware of Eros?
  3. Symbols and icons of Eros
  4. A favorite myth or myths of Eros
  5. Members of the family – genealogical connections
  6. Other related deities and entities associated with Eros
  7. Names and epithets
  8. Variations on Eros
  9. Common mistakes about this deity
  10. Offerings – historical and UPG
  11. Festivals, days, and times sacred to this deity
  12. Places associated with this deity and their worship
  13. What modern cultural issues are closest to this deity’s heart?
  14. Has worship of this deity changed in modern times?
  15. Any mundane practices that are associated with this deity?
  16. How do you think this deity represents the values of their pantheon and cultural origins?
  17. How does this deity relate to other gods and other pantheons?
  18. How does this deity stand in terms of gender and sexuality? (historical and/or UPG)
  19. What quality or qualities of this god do you most admire? What quality or qualities of them do you find the most troubling?
  20. Art that reminds you of this deity
  21. Music that makes you think of this deity
  22. A quote, a poem, or piece of writing that you think this deity resonates strongly with
  23. Your own composition – a piece of writing about or for this deity
  24. A time when this deity has helped you
  25. A time when this deity has refused to help
  26. How has your relationship with this deity changed over time?
  27. Worst misconception about this deity that you have encountered
  28. Something you wish you knew about this deity but don’t currently
  29. Any interesting or unusual UPG to share?
  30. Any suggestions for others just starting to learn about this deity?

About Ruadhán McElroy

Ruadhán has been a traditional Hellenic polytheist for about a decade, and has also maintained devotions to Eros and Apollon most of that time; his status as a devotee of Nyx is more recent. He also paints, makes music, makes jewellery, and writes novels set in the Mod Revival (UK) and Swampie (Oz) subcultures of the 1980s. He also gets a lot of odd little experiences that he jokes will forever render him an insufferable Goth.

30 Days of Devotion: 7 ~ Names and epithets

Abros (ΑΒΡΟΣ) – tender
Algesidōros (ΑΛΓΕΣΙΔΩΡΟΣ) – pain inducer
Anikatos (ΑΝΙΚΑΤΟΣ) – irresistible
Bromios – (βρωμιωσ) “Thunderer”[2]
Diphuēs (ΔΙΦΥΗΣ) – dual in nature or form
Eleutherios (ΕΛΕΥΘΕΡΙΟΣ) – the liberator
Kallistos (ΚΑΛΛΙΣΤΟΣ) – the fairest
Lusimelēs (ΛΥΣΙΜΕΛΗΣ) – limb-loosener
Phanes (Φανης) – Bring to Light
Protogenōs (ΠΡΟΤΟΓΕΝΩΣ) – First Born
Puridromos/Pyridromos (ΠΥΡΙΔΡΟΜΟΣ) – who runs on a path of fire
Skhetlios (ΣΧΕΤΛΙΟΣ) – cruel, merciless
Takeros (ΤΑΚΈΡΟΣ) – melting, languishing

Sappho also gave Him the epithets of “bittersweet”, “from heaven”, and “a crawling beast”.

His name in the Boeotian tongue, an Aeolic dialect, was Arpus. Some have also connected His name to the word Harpaleos, from the Homeric tongue of Aeolic, meaning “attractive,” and also “devouring”.

  1. A basic introduction of Eros
  2. How did I become first aware of Eros?
  3. Symbols and icons of Eros
  4. A favorite myth or myths of Eros
  5. Members of the family – genealogical connections
  6. Other related deities and entities associated with Eros
  7. Names and epithets
  8. Variations on this deity (aspects, regional forms, etc.)
  9. Common mistakes about this deity
  10. Offerings – historical and UPG
  11. Festivals, days, and times sacred to this deity
  12. Places associated with this deity and their worship
  13. What modern cultural issues are closest to this deity’s heart?
  14. Has worship of this deity changed in modern times?
  15. Any mundane practices that are associated with this deity?
  16. How do you think this deity represents the values of their pantheon and cultural origins?
  17. How does this deity relate to other gods and other pantheons?
  18. How does this deity stand in terms of gender and sexuality? (historical and/or UPG)
  19. What quality or qualities of this god do you most admire? What quality or qualities of them do you find the most troubling?
  20. Art that reminds you of this deity
  21. Music that makes you think of this deity
  22. A quote, a poem, or piece of writing that you think this deity resonates strongly with
  23. Your own composition – a piece of writing about or for this deity
  24. A time when this deity has helped you
  25. A time when this deity has refused to help
  26. How has your relationship with this deity changed over time?
  27. Worst misconception about this deity that you have encountered
  28. Something you wish you knew about this deity but don’t currently
  29. Any interesting or unusual UPG to share?
  30. Any suggestions for others just starting to learn about this deity?

About Ruadhán McElroy

Ruadhán has been a traditional Hellenic polytheist for about a decade, and has also maintained devotions to Eros and Apollon most of that time; his status as a devotee of Nyx is more recent. He also paints, makes music, makes jewellery, and writes novels set in the Mod Revival (UK) and Swampie (Oz) subcultures of the 1980s. He also gets a lot of odd little experiences that he jokes will forever render him an insufferable Goth.

30 Days of Devotion: 5 ~ Members of the family – genealogical connections

Mothers:
Khaos & Nyx, the latter born pregnant with Him after forming from the self-destruction of the former

Sisters:
The Moirai, Eris,

Half-Siblings:
Hypnos, Thanatos, Nemesis, Moros, the Keres, the Oneroi, Momos,

Wife:
Psykhe

Lovers:
Hymenaios/Hyakinthos, Ganymedes, Okeanid Rhodope

Offspring:
Hedone, birds, Poros, Penia

  1. A basic introduction of Eros
  2. How did I become first aware of Eros?
  3. Symbols and icons of Eros
  4. A favorite myth or myths of Eros
  5. Members of the family – genealogical connections
  6. Other related deities and entities associated with this deity
  7. Names and epithets
  8. Variations on this deity (aspects, regional forms, etc.)
  9. Common mistakes about this deity
  10. Offerings – historical and UPG
  11. Festivals, days, and times sacred to this deity
  12. Places associated with this deity and their worship
  13. What modern cultural issues are closest to this deity’s heart?
  14. Has worship of this deity changed in modern times?
  15. Any mundane practices that are associated with this deity?
  16. How do you think this deity represents the values of their pantheon and cultural origins?
  17. How does this deity relate to other gods and other pantheons?
  18. How does this deity stand in terms of gender and sexuality? (historical and/or UPG)
  19. What quality or qualities of this god do you most admire? What quality or qualities of them do you find the most troubling?
  20. Art that reminds you of this deity
  21. Music that makes you think of this deity
  22. A quote, a poem, or piece of writing that you think this deity resonates strongly with
  23. Your own composition – a piece of writing about or for this deity
  24. A time when this deity has helped you
  25. A time when this deity has refused to help
  26. How has your relationship with this deity changed over time?
  27. Worst misconception about this deity that you have encountered
  28. Something you wish you knew about this deity but don’t currently
  29. Any interesting or unusual UPG to share?
  30. Any suggestions for others just starting to learn about this deity?

About Ruadhán McElroy

Ruadhán has been a traditional Hellenic polytheist for about a decade, and has also maintained devotions to Eros and Apollon most of that time; his status as a devotee of Nyx is more recent. He also paints, makes music, makes jewellery, and writes novels set in the Mod Revival (UK) and Swampie (Oz) subcultures of the 1980s. He also gets a lot of odd little experiences that he jokes will forever render him an insufferable Goth.