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Wondering Why We Ever Go Home: Greece, 2007 - Chronarchy

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June 6th, 2007


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04:22 pm - Wondering Why We Ever Go Home: Greece, 2007
Journal Entry 8

04/10/07
4:30 PM
Delphi
Beneath the Temple of Apollo Pythios

The air was still, cool. The scent of the earth filled my lungs. Outside, the "lifeguards" (little old ladies with whistles who sit in high places and tell people not to climb on the ruins) were blowing their whistles at overly adventurous tourists who didn't read the signs that say "No climbing" or "Do Not Touch". Men and women walked by, chattering in all manner of languages at their children.

And here I sat, alone in the darkness beneath the Temple of Apollo Pythios, with zylch outside standing watch for anyone official.


the corridor beneath
the Temple of Apollo Pythios


I made an offering of a coin to the God of the Temple, and began my meditation.

zylch had decided to do a Two Powers meditation, and I was originally planning to do the same, in order to accurately compare our experience. As I knelt down, though, and thought about where I was, I decided that simply opening in a meditative state was the ideal meditation here. So my eyes closed, my body relaxed, and I began to experience the place.

As I breathed in, I felt the cool darkness that places within the earth provide. The smell of the dirt and the dust in the air entered my lungs, and I sank deeper into the meditation. The stillness of the tunnel, so different from the chaotic outside, brought me deeper and deeper.

I expected to feel the presence of Apollo; after all, here I was below his temple, wondering if this was the tunnel to the fault where the Pythia found her inspiration. Instead, I found the earth. I found that this place might be sacred to Apollo above, but where the ground began, it was the earth, Gaea, who was truly the patron of this place.

I was no longer in the realm of the god of enlightenment, inspiration, and divination. I was at an entrance to a deity far older and far more present.

Soon, I ended my meditation and slipped out of the opening we had entered.

Later, zylch told me that she couldn't connect to the Sky Power.

I don't think the Sky Power is there. I don't think it can penetrate. I think the earth is all you will find supporting the Temple of Apollo Pythios, and all that supports Delphi.

Gaea may have been defeated here, but she was not supplanted.


| |
The Temple of Athena | Sunset over Delphi's port | Delphi's "Cafe Ichor"

[end of journal, moment of non-journal follows]

I like the Cafe Ichor the best. I'm all about finding Lovecraftian things in sacred places :) (btw, it was a very nice cafe/bar sort of establishment, with pretty blue lighting and a rather sexy clientèle. Just the sort of place I'd like to hang out.)

ferrelux and I ran across this nifty glass picture, and I snapped a picture because I can't read Greek. The aim was for zylch to translate it for us. You know, if she's willing.
Current Location: Southeast of Disorder
Current Mood: awake
Current Music: "Last Mango in Paris", -JB

(11 comments Leave a comment)

Comments:


[User Picture]
From:viedansante
Date:June 6th, 2007 08:59 pm (UTC)
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I was miserably sick that day and in a pretty bad mood. But the cats, they were wonderful, and it was really cool to climb around and see stuff and experience Things of Awesome.
[User Picture]
From:fionnabhar
Date:June 6th, 2007 09:16 pm (UTC)
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Something about for/on account of the god on the ground, under the ground something something the sun and/or Phoebus something something maybe about a treasure and something else. My rusty Koine is not up to the task. Back to you, zylch.
[User Picture]
From:zylch
Date:June 10th, 2007 07:48 pm (UTC)
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I'm stumped at the moment -- I don't have my books, my Greek is too rusty to do it without some major grammatical help from Perseus, and the damn site is fscked right now so all I can get is dictionary meanings.

The image is clearly of the oracle (chica sitting on a tripod), and my first instinct is that the warrior is Perseus because of the shield, but I don't think he goes to the oracle. It may just be generic.

Here's what I've got on the Greek; I'll pass the link on to playgreek for her to take a look at, too.

The first line is "Something [2p pl imp, tell?] to the king [to/on the ground] [word derived from "to fall"] Daidalos (in the nom.) [no clue -- aula doesn't make sense, dula isn't a word]"

Second line is better... "Phoibos no longer holds the hut [bridal bower?] or prophetic laurel [Daphne]" (The last two words of this line are cited to App. Anth 6.122 in the LSJ, but I don't have access to that text to see if the whole thing is a quotation)

Third line: "no milk [acc] chattering [aor ppl?] [marrying? leading? unsure of conj.] and talktative water." This line may go with the line above, a continuation of the list of things Phoibos does not have anymore. Why he doesn't have chattering milk or talkative water, I'm not sure.
[User Picture]
From:zylch
Date:June 11th, 2007 07:26 am (UTC)
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And indeed, playgreek was able to find the answer with the aid of Google (she had the right font to type it in). According to her the Greek is "pretty koine with verse and epic issues (no augment)," which explains part of why I was having such trouble (I know Attic, not koine).

Background and translation from http://www.nyloo.com/html/ent/997/ent.22997.1.asp:
"Then, came the end. Constantine's successor, Emperor Julian, fascinated by Greece's classical civilization, sought to reinstate the ancient Greek spirit, culture, and Gods to an empire that was fast becoming entirely Christian. As part of his quixotic quest he sought Delphi's advice on his enterprise.

Pythia famously replied: "Tell the King that the singing flute has fallen down; that Apollo's home is no more, nor is the Oracle or the speaking source. And the speaking water has been silenced."
[User Picture]
From:romandruid
Date:June 6th, 2007 09:53 pm (UTC)
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I wouldn't necessarily write off Apollo just because you didn't feel his presence when you were there. The gods are not omnipresent (well, except maybe Gaia), and Apollo has a dozen or more hang-outs. He might have just been hanging out at Delos or Olympus when you visited Delphi. :)

Actually, that's a good thing to keep in mind when invoking deities: if you want to get someone's attention, it's a good idea to ring them up at all the places they might be.
[User Picture]
From:saffronhare
Date:June 7th, 2007 03:54 am (UTC)
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I'm sorry, man, but that cafe sign reads "IHOP" to my non-greek-knowing braing. :)
[User Picture]
From:chronarchy
Date:June 7th, 2007 12:18 pm (UTC)
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I'd have killed for an IHOP by then :)
[User Picture]
From:hekatatia
Date:June 7th, 2007 07:46 am (UTC)
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Wow, did we ever have radically different experiences there! I didn't assume I would naturally connect with Apollon yet I did to overwhelming degree. As well as some others, to a lesser degree. However in my perspective that doesn't mean they are less present, only that I'm less connected with them. So if you personally don't connect with Apollon you think he must not be present there? Interesting.

[User Picture]
From:chronarchy
Date:June 7th, 2007 12:11 pm (UTC)
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*grins* I attribute my experience entirely to the fact that I was literally under the temple.

But in general, the limited nature of deities (and particularly Greek ones, where Poseidon goes on vacation to Ethiopia of all places) indicates to me that it's entirely possible that he's not present at that particular point.

As I re-read the journal entry, it's not quite accurate to how I feel now, though. . . but I'm really into posting the journal entries in their entirety, generally with as little commentary as possible. They're interesting snapshots of what I write when there's no audience and no thought given to, "Gee, I wonder what X would say if I wrote Y?"

Interestingly, I'd rarely ever have the same thoughts after spending some time re-thinking something like this. I suspect that when I actually get around to the real write up, I'll have some comments on a lot of these journal entries.
[User Picture]
From:hekatatia
Date:June 8th, 2007 10:59 am (UTC)
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Oh the hijinks of you with fully functioning limbs! *grin*

I'm not certain I buy into the limited nature of deities idea. However it could be a huge ego boost if I do...meaning Apollon showed up special for me! ;D Hmm... *rubs hands together & cackles*

I'm very interested in your later comments when you're finished. I'll have to check back periodically.
[User Picture]
From:chronarchy
Date:June 8th, 2007 12:01 pm (UTC)
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Maybe, because he was hanging out with you, I was left alone.

*sniffs*

Apollo doesn't like me! WAAAHH!!!!

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