Thursday, November 29, 2007

On Asklepios, the doctor.

In the Greek religious system there are Heroes, and Heroes are the Greek answer to ancestor worship that has occurred and continues to occur all over the world to this day. In addition, the Hero system also seems to be connected to the idea, arising most prominently to the fore in the Hindu system, of the avatar. We see it to this day in religions as far ranging as Christianity and Hinduism, and in many ways in the Prophets of Islam and Judaism.

An avatar is essentially a physical earthly manifestation of a divine being. That is to say, a god made incarnate as a human being (The entire deity or just a subset?) and as a result becoming very much an individual being since the avatar does live a human life of extra ordinary proportions.

Rama is an avatar in the Hindu religion. Mohamed in Islam may well have been seen as a kind of avatar. And in Christianity, Jesus is, perhaps, the world's best known avatar form. Who these people may have actually been and how their teachings have been misinterpreted and misapplied through history is beyond the scope of this posting, and not in my consciousness enough for me to give little more than simple opinion.

But in the Greek Religion, there are several beings in the mythos who are clearly avatar forms and who may well have been true human beings who were born of the essence of the divine, but having been born in the mortal world lived and died as mortals do, the divine essence returning to the divine sphere where it came from.

Herakles, Odysseus, Achilles, the Dioskouroi, and Asklepios being in the forefront of these. The Greeks called them Heroes, and sometimes Hero Gods, continuing their worship long after their deaths and seeking their aid and protection. Some of these, like Asklepios and Herakles, are often thought to have transcended human mortality, due to their divine essence, and lived on as Gods, independent and whole, in the divine sphere.

Asklepios was a physician, son of Apollo, more often than not a sign that a hero was an avatar was direct descent from a God in the mythos, who in his efforts to heal people made the fatal mistake of bringing the dead back to life. This is an unforgivable breach of the order of the cosmos, and Zeus took action, killing Asklepios.

The myths say that Apollo took revenge, and that as a result of his revenge was punished by Zeus to become the servant of a mortal king. A true come down for a God.

Asklepios confuses me in many ways because the concept of the avatar is fairly new to me. The very idea of a God walking among us, living a normal human life, perhaps even unaware that he or she is an avatar of a God, yet always pushed by his or her divine nature to do extraordinary things is something that both fascinates me and scares me a bit.

How many people, for example, develop delusions about themselves that cause them to lead people astray because they think they have a right to tell others what the Gods think? Can I be such a person? Am I, in sharing this site with you, being arrogant enough to think of myself in this way? The possibility scares me a bit. We human beings are so easily lead to arrogance and zealotry.

And what about Zeus in all this? Was there no other way to stop Asklepios? Was death the only way, or is it simply that by his very nature he must have a dreadful ending?

If one thinks about many of the people in our history who could have been avatars of the divine, one can imagine a Martin Luther King Jr or a Malcolm X as such, each having met sad and sudden ends. But what of other more notorious men like Hitler or Stalin? Could it be that an avatar can turn from the divine path through human will and corruption to an evil beyond anything the Gods would wish upon us?

It is all a bit scary at times to contemplate. After all, the Gods do not necessarily have our individual best interests at heart, and just as Troy fell at the hands of the Heroes, so to might we, judged by the Gods unworthy of continuing.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

What I should not be seeing...

Along with what I hope to see, I must also come to understand what it is I make myself see out of sheer hope but which is not to my best interest or which may not be reasonable to expect when I look through that door and seek to see what is ahead for me.

For one thing, I have allowed my feelings of a personal and romantic nature to interfere with what I am seeking to learn here. That, perhaps, Apollo is telling me that I have not been focused on the right realm of being because I am allowing the erotic, Aphrodite's realm, interfere with my goal in this stage of my meditations.

But, and myth tells us this, the Gods do not demand that we be exclusive, even at times like these, so what he may be telling me right now is to watch out for the obsessive nature of love and eroticism and not let it blind me to him at this time.

I need to find some means by which to truly connect with him, for, as I have mentioned before, I have never been particularly close to Apollo. I mention him in my prayers, I name him in my invocations, and I ask for his protection and blessings when I bless my home in the name of the Gods, but I have never really felt a personal touch from him. Even Ares, a god with whom I have so little in common, has made himself strongly felt in my life in many ways.

Exploring the many epithets of Apollo has really only made things worse. So complex a figure is hard to grasp, and further exploration of other figures in his mythos have further complicated the issues at hand.

How does Asklepios, who I see as an avatar of Apollo himself, reaffirm this Gods connection to humanity, and why does that connection go so awry? Does Apollo's misfortune with love give a clue to the nature of love itself that we men seldom come to grips with? And his bisexuality, what does that indicate to me at this time?

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Apollo Postaterios and the view to the other side of the blocked doorway.

So, Apollo is blocking me. He is standing in my way, forcing me to look at what I am doing, how I am doing it, and why, and I have presumed that was it, that he wanted me to look at this all and see what I have done wrong, what I have done right, and what I could do to make those things synch with each other to make me a better person. But as I looked at the Rapidweaver window thinking about this post, it hit me. He is standing at the doorway, blocking me from going through, but what about that door?

The door itself is not closed, and though he stands there (this is metaphor, I am not literally seeing a god standing in a door) I can still see what is ahead through it. Or, rather, I can seek to see what it is I expect to be on the other side of that threshhold, and I have to admit, I am not sure. Do I have a true goal, other than the vague golas of becoming a better person, being more centered, being less ornery and a bit more open to others. What exactly am I expecting of the future if I continue to follow througn here?

Why had it not occured to me that the prophetic God was pointing out my lack of direction, something that directly relates to my future?

I dunno.

So, what are my goals? What do I truly seek to accomplish with all this?

That's hard to answer, and thus why the Gods is standing in my way. He is forcing me to think about it and making me make decisions about what I hope to do from here on in, and, perhaps, to tell me not to rush and not to try so hard to work my way through, but rather just work and make it through as I can.

But, to be fair to myself, I should outline one or two goals.

1: To be a better man. This vague goal is very powerful, because it leaves me with a great many things to explore and improve upon. My temper, for one, has been greatly helped by this. My meditations and hopeful outlook with regard to them have filtered their way through to the rest of my life. I am a much more pleasant person, and this is part of my goal in being a better person. To become a person to whom anyone can turn for advice and know they will not be judged or lectured to. Someone patient and sincere who will, none the less, know when to keep his secrets. I am all of these things now, but this man is shrouded in a veil of bitterness and deep hurt that emerges from a very injured child deep inside who had his very spirit beaten out of him by life, family, and a society that didn't care.

2: To be truly open to love. I have loved people, well, men in my life. But to be honest, I am not sure if I have ever really been "in love" in that heart wrenching way that people write songs about. I don't think I am that kind of person. But I have loved, and I do know that I can love someone, but what about them loving me? Am I the kind person who does not let anyone love him? Yes, in many ways I am, and into my life the Gods have thrown a man who is a lot like me. He is not very emotionally expressive, a little shy, and yet at the same time very passionate. Making love to him is like losing myself in feeling, and I think he feels the same way, but neither one of us is very good at voicing these things, and it seems that right now, that is perfect, because we are men, and we men really do express ourselves very differently from women, and that way is often through physical contact, through a kiss, througha smile or the touching of a hand at certain moments, and I am very refreshed by that. Being open to love must mean being open to all of these things and a true acceptance of myself as a man, a gay man, a man who can express his feelings and allow others to express theirs and be well disposed to them.

3: To better educate myself. I have to come to a point when I can go take a few classes, learn to speak Greek, further my knowledge of Portuguese and French, two languages I really love, and to recconnect with my latin culture by studying in more depth the history of my people.

Those are three basic goals, and I hope to contemplate this further and get to work on some more. maybe Apollo will allow me to move through that door then.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Apollo Prostaterios, and the blocked doorway.

I am at a loss. I think I am doing the right things by opening myself up a bit. Letting people in a little more so that I can fully realize my potential and effect on others as well as how they affect me, but Apollo stridently stands at the door, blocking my way.

The dream that caused me so much confusion, the sexy porn star and the childhood home dream, and the one that made me take a closer look at my views of the future, that of the witches and the commune, have lead me astray somehow. Oh, those dreams are still valid, and they require further meditation, but my interpretations of them must be flawed.

Or, perhaps, their meaning has changed because I have changed.

Is it possible that in the last few months, as I have undertaken this little path of self discovery, I have changed so much that those two dreams are now different to my mind? Do I dare ask for more dreams to guide me along, knowing that these two were already rather confusing to me and made me a little crazy?

And what about some of the other things that have been happening to me lately?

I have come to a more open set of ideals with regard to sexuality. I no longer really see myself as simply gay, but something a little more open to other possibilities. I am dating a man who was once married, and has children. How will I deal with that when the dating goes further and I have to meet and interact with them? What if I fail at yet another relationship? Will that send me backward again, forcing me to do this all over?

Thursday, November 1, 2007

So, on with the show!

So, I move on with the show here, and as I say so long to Apollo Akesios I must now say hello to Apollo Thearios (of the Oracle) and Prostaterios (he who stands before the entrance) becaue I think I have seen something in my interaction with Apollo that has awoken something in me. Apollo is standing before the entrance, the doorway, forcing me to think about the future and whether or not I am ready to move forward before I am allowed to continue.

I always pictured that I would work this little program I devised, or was inspired to devise, and that I would learn a thing here or there about myself from the Gods and move forward. I didn't quite picture that a God would stop me in my tracks and say, no, you may not move on because you have not considered everything you should consider.

I have always been a very rationalistic type of person, more Bones than Booth (You get a star if you get the reference.), and as a result of that I always picture any decisions I make about my life as my own, which lays the blame for my crappy life on my doorstep as well, of course, but when one decides to let the circumstances guide one, as this program is designed to do, one finds that much more of what we do has to do with how the world forces us to bend and twist to its dance.

I am in control of my life, but perhaps what Apollo os forcing me to do now is look beyond what I decide to the circumstances that force me to do things. Perhaps he wants me to better examine those circumstances because within them are locked decisions I never considered, or considered and decided wrongly about.

As the oracular God, one has to pay special attention to such things, and the fact that he is standing in my way now is going to force me to look carefully at my next few steps before I take them.