Sunday, December 17, 2017

Daily Devotions - A Greek Outline

Upon request from a fellow Hellenist who is having trouble coming up with daily religious activities, I have decided to make this post with loads of such information, not just for specifically Hellenists, but for anyone who wants to worship Greek Gods on any given day.

Before I begin the outline, I will list all the things you will need to follow it on a day-to-day basis.

* A candle.
* Incense.
* Libation.
* A glass of grape juice or wine.
* Bite of chocolate.
* A copy of the Orphic Hymns. If you don't have a copy, they can be located here ---> Hymns of Orpheus.
* Meditation music also really helps with focus and calmness. Here is a link to a very nice video I use regularly; just click and bookmark ---> Meditation Music.

1- Light your candle as the altar flame. All general rites begin and end with Hestia. I enjoy reciting the Homeric Hymn to Her, which I will provide here with a little bit of my own modification, to open my daily worship.

O' Hestia, who guards the sacred House of the Prince, Apollon the Far-Shooter in goodly Pytho, ever do the oil drop dank from Thy locks. Come now with gracious heart and counseling Zeus, and give Grace to my family and home. Homeric Hymns.

A small offering is usually given to Her at this point. I myself offer Her the fire of the flame that comes from the candle.

2- Begin now with the amazing Orphic Hymn known as Mousaios, It is the hymn/prayer that invokes the major Gods and Goddesses of Greek theology. Some of the names can be hard to pronounce if you're a novice with the texts, so just do the best you can. Google translate can be used to help you learn how to recite them. When you reach the end of the hymn, you will be telling these Divinities that you're going to offer to them. You can either pour a libation as it says, or as I do, you can change the word to incense and light a cone of frankincense and myrrh.

3- Hold up your incense dish as the fragrance burns and recite prayers to the Gods of the day in particular. 

Monday - Artemis and Selene.
Tuesday - Ares.
Wednesday - Hermes, Dionysos, and Demeter.
Thursday - Zeus and Hera.
Friday - Aphrodite and Poseidon.
Saturday - Athene and Hephaistos.
Sunday - Apollon and Helios.

All of these Gods have elaborate hymns in the Orphic texts. You can also include your own personal prayers or hymns to these Gods relevant to your own personal life. Remember, quite likely, you have already offered the incense to the Gods when you recited the Mousaios, so holding up the incense to them is enough as you recite the prayers or hymns. The sweet fragrance will not only be a great offering, but it will help bring you into a mystical state.

4- Pray and offer to a Hero. Your Patron Hero or Heroine is best for this concerning daily worship, but in the event you don't yet have one, or want to honor others, very big Heroes within Hellenic worship include Herakles, Theseus and Bellerophon. In fact, there is a hymn to Herakles in the Orphic texts. Upon completion, offer to the Hero, either the libation or incense, whichever is left.

5- I like to end some of my daily rites with The Dionysian Rite, see link ---> Body and Blood.

6- End officially by thanking the Gods and Heroes, and asking Hestia to keep your family together and your home safe.

In the Goodness of the Gods,
Chris Aldridge.

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