Back on track with my blogging through the Maxims, I find this one a personal struggle right now. I’ve always tried to live a good life. I’ve always tried to be respectful both to and in regards to my parents. My father, though, has been a fountain of disappointment and broken promises in my life since as far back as I can remember. He does what is right by him first and foremost, with little regard to those around him.
So, I’ve made a pretty epic decision regarding my journey through Hellenismos. Most Hellenes follow the standardized calendar put out by one of two agencies online which is based of the Athenian calendar and the dates and times the cycles happen in Athens. Now, this is both practical and impractical at the same time.
First of all, my lunar calendar is different based on my geographical location -at least I think that’s how it works, and so when it’s the new moon in Green Bay, Wisconsin, USA it’s not quite the new moon in Athens, Greece. Second of all, while the start of the new month happens with the new moon over Athens both frequently cited online Athenian calendars are a bit off from one another and can’t totally agree when these new moon dates are. Thirdly, if during the Hellenic period, a Hellene was traveling a vast difference away, they probably weren’t deciding when the new moon was based on some paper calendar and static date counts. They probably look at the sky at night and kept track of where it was in its waning cycle.
So, I’m going to deviate from the published calendar online and base it on my region. It’s only off by a day or two. Yesterday was my Deipnon based on when the new moon was in my area of the world. It feels more right for me to do it that way, so that’s what I’m doing.
So, I’m actually feeling better finally. Not quite 100%, but better enough that I’m starting to get back into religious practice. Since I’ve been very lax on my new moon observances since about June thanks to a declining health thing, I spent all my break times today tending to my altars and shrines. Now, typically that would wait until the next new moon, but I had let them fall so far out of whack that I’m sure the gods will both understand and appreciate if I go a bit off schedule and make their shrines and altars a bit more… passable.
Back on my journey with the Delphic Maxims, I come across another one that is, as far as I’m concerned, common sense for any good Hellene … or hell, any pagan. But maybe not. Neopaganism has this misconception that every path has earth worship in common. That they are all “earth-based” religions. That’s not exactly true. I don’t see many tree-hugging Asatru that toast Mother Earth beneath our feet during Sumble (and I’ve been to my share of Sumbles, let me tell you). I don’t know many Hellenes… or any really… that call to the elements. That’s limited, in my opinion, to eclectic paganism and wicca.
It’s a new month on the Hellenic calendar. I’ve been doing new moon celebrations for a while now, but I thought I’d give those not familiar with Hellenismos a little taste of what I do of the course of the three days over the new moon. This happens every month. Now, if you weren’t aware, the Hellenic calendar is not like the Celtic Wheel of the Year at all. It’s a lunar calendar that has monthly celebrations above and beyond the Wiccan esbats and lesser esbats. There’s Hekate’s Deipnon, the Noumenia, and the Agathos Daimon libation that fall over the new moon. There’s monthly observances for various deities and there are festivals… monthly.
So, it occurred to me yesterday after I posted a link to my blog on the Maxims on my twitter accounts that not everyone knows what the Delphic Maxims are. I simplified it by calling them an ethical system, but that doesn’t just sit well with me. I’m not into simplifying things. If there is one things my friends, my true friends, and my husband will tell you it’s that I seem to complicate things in my search for a deeper truth.
I’m going to link to someone who has a wonderful explanation of the Maxims, complete with links of their own, for you to review if you aren’t familiar with the Maxims. I’m also flattered to be part of what has been dubbed the “Delphic Maxims Blogging Party.” I’m not as educated or even as well-spoken as some of the other bloggers, but I am honored to be listed among them. Anyway, find the link here: Delphic Maxims Blogging Party!
So I hope that helps clear up a few things. I’m going to try to get to the second maxim either today or tomorrow, but I have another blog planned on my relationship with Ares that might go up before that.
I think I’ll create a separate tag for the Maxims so people can sort through them.
So, a number of fellow Hellenes are blogging through the Delphic Maxims and I think I’ll do something similar with this blog to try to stray away from the negative rants I’ve been doing since inception of the blog.
First off, what are the Delphic Maxims? Well, they are, in their simplest form, an ethical system that many Hellenes use in daily life. There are others, of course. The Golden Verses of Pythagoras is one that I used to adhere a bit more to. There’s the Tenets of Solon, which are not used as often and a handful of other ancient texts that modern practitioners use to base their behaviors on. I’m going to focus on the Maxims first, then possibly address other ethical systems in time. Depends if I get sick of doing this or not.
Now the first one of the Maxims is quite a big one: Follow God.
The thing to keep in mind is that this isn’t meant in an evangelical Christian sort of way. This is probably a rough translation of something that more or less means “follow or honor that which is godly.”
I’m not going to go into what is godly, as that is a very individualized subject. What is godly to me is not godly to my mostly atheistic husband and is probably not godly to my Asatru friends. I’m fairly certain that what is meant by “Follow God” is meant that you should constantly question yourself. Is what you are doing of high virtue? Are you pursuing the sacred? The divine?
It’s a question that I keep in mind every day. I fall off the wagon, regularly with a number of the maxims… given that I am prone to giving in to emotion and that makes me mortal and therefore fallible. But I do question myself on a regular basis, asking myself… “is this godly? Is this virtuous?” And probably most importantly, “will I regret this later?”
These will more or less be shorter blog posts than I’ve done lately, but I’m hoping they’ll be far more positive.
Today I am going to give a brief review of two Hellenic Reconstructionalist books available for purchase on the recommendation to me by a listener of my podcast. These books are:
A Beginner’s Guide to Hellenismos
by: Timothy Jay Alexander
Publication Date: June 7, 2007
by: Timothy Jay Alexander
Publication Date: April 27, 2007 | ISBN-10: 1430314273 | ISBN-13: 978-1430314271 | Edition: 1st