Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Aphrodite as a form of chaos.

In my last post I asked the question, might not Aphrodite’s power be made manifest in chaos?

To clarify something, when I say chaos here, I am talking about the modern scientific principle of uncertainty. A principle which plays a major part in modern science, but which most people, myself included, would have a hard time wrapping their heads around. After all, the universe, in spite of all its immense complexity, seems to work so beautifully, like a well maintained clockworks, but the truth is that underlying all of that is chaos.

In her cosmic aspect, one could extrapolate that a goddess that causes such chaos in our hearts, such turmoil, such pain, might also be a chaotic force that underlies all the beautiful workings of the cosmos. a chaos without which all that magnificent beauty could not happen.

The Greeks also had a concept of Chaos, one which is spoken of only briefly in the creation myths of the Gods, and in that case, the word Chaos actually means gap. Like the Northern concept of the Ginnungagap. This is not Aphrodite, this is not love, this is simply the primordial state of the universe as pure potential, from which all things would emerge. In essence, they were describing the empty cosmos, or perhaps even the singularity from which the cosmos erupted.

But the forces of chaos, and the forces of this powerful being who is made manifest by it, are all around us in every aspect of our lives, and we try, harder and harder, to impose order on it only to be rebuked by her. She smaks us down, forcing us to face that which scares us the most, that we are not in control of everything, that emotion and thought come, like the wild winds, and often topple us like old trailers in the path of a mighty tornado.

If Aphrodite is not, like her brother Dionysos, part of that dynamic of chaos, I don’t think I can ever truly understand her.

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