Friday, December 28, 2007

OK, time for a bit of a reboot...

So, the last time I posted before Iliouyenna, I had come to the realization that I had erred in my approach to Apollo. Now, I am still not sure, not 100%, of why my approach is bad but it is, and the God has made his displeasure known. That I have been moving in too book nerdy a way that seeks to understand this God through the epithets laid upon him by the Ancient Greeks is clear, but I have always used this approach to understand the Gods. I have always used this as a means to move deeper into how they affect me, but maybe where I have gone wrong here is in misunderstanding the way this God is more akin to Dionysos that I thought.

What do I mean by this?

Well, Dionysos is a God of extremes, and as a result he is a God who hits us through our emotions, and because it is Dionysos, we expect it. But with Apollo I think I have always seen him as a God that was more "of the head" or more intellectual. Yet intellect, in the end, is just another one of our natural processes, and thought, like emotion, is very spontaneous, even mysterious in its origins and purposes sometimes.

If Dionysos is the God of the rampant emotions like various forms of lust and emotional discord, then Apollo is a God whose power lies, in so far as we go, in the ultimate control of one rampant and chaotic process reining in another in our minds. Yet that control can also come at a price, and that price can be the loss of connection between our minds and our emotions.

How do we understand love if we force ourselves to control the base emotion at the core of love? How do we come to an understanding of fear if we try so hard to understand it that we fail to feel it properly and in its proper context? How do we understand the Gods themselves if we cannot let go and feel them in the raw?

So Apollo, a God who is often presented as lusty himself in the mythos, must never be understood as a God of control, but rather as a god of moderation. One may imagine this as being basically the same thing, but there is a subtle difference, and understanding Apollo means understanding that.

Now the question remains, do I really understand that distinction? And if I do, am I capable of putting that into practice in my life in such a way that I learn the lesson the God is seeking to teach me?

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