April 18, 2006

Worshipers of Zeus want to use the Acropolis

Posted at 12:30 pm in Acropolis

People who worship the twelve gods of Mount Olympus are planning on asking the Greek government if they can practice their faith at various ancient sites which were originally dedicated to these gods, such as the Acropolis.
There is already a precedent for the use of ancient monuments in this way, where Stonehenge is visited by modern day druids for the summer solstice celebrations. The neo-pagans probably have as much connection to the original users of the temples as the neo-druids do with Stonehenge (the first recorded druidic ceremonies at the site in modern times were in 1905).

From:
Kathimerini (English Edition)

Monday April 17, 2006
Zeus worshippers want to head for Acropolis

Worshippers of the 12 gods of Mount Olympus are planning to ask the government to allow them to practice their faith at ancient sites like the Acropolis, sources told Sunday’s Kathimerini.

The followers of this minority faith have been buoyed by a court ruling in February that allowed the existence of an association, known as Ellinais, whose members claim to worship Zeus and the other 11 gods.

Ellinais was formed last October by 23 Greeks but in its annual report on religious freedom, the US State Department estimates that some 2,000 people worship the 12 ancient gods in Greece.

Sources said Ellinais will seek permission from the Culture Ministry to establish places of worship and to be allowed to worship at ancient temples such as the Parthenon and the Temple of Poseidon in Sounion.

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15 Comments »

  1. Evan Ziamos said,

    12.03.06 at 2:49 pm

    I see no reason why Ellinais and the followers of the ancient Hellenic religion should not practice there faith at ancient Hellenic temples, is that not the reason these temples were built for.
    I believe the number of followers are so many as to say that all Helles deep down inside their DNA is encoded their Gods (Olympian) and other, Heroes, Daemons (not the Christian interpretation of daemon) and their mythology which is only a coded method of writing their history and science. We need not look any further for the truth but to decifer the true meaning of the myths.
    It is only a matter of time for the Hellenes to see the light of Apollo.

  2. David said,

    01.21.07 at 4:20 am

    I say good on them. I find todays main religions are all corrupt or violent.

    I find the old Greek and Roman religions more appealing.

  3. David Frederick said,

    01.21.07 at 6:06 pm

    Those involved in an active process to preserve aspects of ancient cultures, should be allowed to do so. After all, the government is actively trying to preserve the monuments. The practices and customs are just as important. Around the world, there are monuments and structures that we marvel at, but know little to nothing of the ceremonies held at these sites. I am sure that the worshipers would respect the monuments as their place of reverence. To not allow them to use the temples would be akin to preventing Muslims from a Temple, Jewish from Synagogues, Christians from Churches or Cathedrals, etc., because the buildings have historic value (We know THAT is not going to happen). We need to preserve the practices and ceremonies also, and in doing this, we need to allow the freedom of religious customs to prevail (as long as they don’t impede or threaten the lives of others).

  4. saly said,

    01.22.07 at 1:16 am

    Thanks God, all this religions are so destructive today. I appreciate everythig that turns us from radical religious thoughts. People are dying today mostly in the name of religion.

  5. brandon said,

    01.22.07 at 1:33 am

    yeah yeah i can dig it! more power to them. anybody know where to find more info on Ellinais?

  6. Ashoka said,

    01.22.07 at 2:00 am

    This is good, Hinduism, the Viking Religion, Zorastrianism the Helenic Relgion, and the Relgion of Rome were all once brothers and sisters. The last to survive in Hinduism. It is wonderful that the west is waking up to it’s real roots.

  7. Denese said,

    01.22.07 at 3:33 pm

    I not only find the thought refreshing but the possibility wonderful. All religions of today are based on the stories, principles and idealism of these ancient faiths. I agree everyone should have a place of worship for their religious preference. But keep in mind, there has never been an organized religion in the history of the planet that hasn’t had it’s flaws. Twenty five hundred years ago the world was involved in civil strife, leaders taking action for known world domination, starvation, poverty and disease. Infortunately not much has changed in the world since that time. Perhaps, just perhaps, if we could take all of the knowledge we have attained in the last 2500 years back to our roots, maybe just maybe we could make the world what it should have been in the first place.

  8. Cerr said,

    01.22.07 at 5:10 pm

    Why should they not be able to use the ancient Temples? Why were the Temples built in the first place but as places of worship and respect. This is what the Ellinais Tradition members are looking to do – it is simply a TRUE Greek Revival. Blessings to them on their task at hand.
    It won’t be easy in a world such as this. Still, people of faith *ANY* faith, deserve to have their places to worship…….Paganism was out there longer by far than the more modern versions of Christianity; why should Pagans not be allowed to worship in Temples built BY Pagans FOR Pagans?!

  9. Jim Gatos said,

    01.22.07 at 11:11 pm

    Well, I couldn’t be happier…

    Perhaps a revival of a “pagan” religion is what the world needs.. Then perhaps maybe everyone will stop killing everyone in the name of every, and I mean every, religion, out there..

    I only see good coming out of this…

  10. Zeus n’est pas mort! - Le jardin des retours - LeWebPédagogique said,

    01.23.07 at 2:04 pm

    [...] Le mouvement Ellinais serait en train d’obtenir, contre l’Eglise orthodoxe grecque (qui représente 98% de la population), de pouvoir exercer son culte dans les sites religieux antiques, comme dans les ruines du temple de Zeus Olympien, à Athènes (photo), où il a fêté le début de l’année antique (selon un calendrier commençant en 776 avant J.-C.). Il est depuis quelques jours considéré comme un mouvement religieux légal par les tribunaux, au grand dam des orthodoxes, qui considèrent ce mouvement comme une secte, et ses idées comme un retour au paganisme. [...]

  11. P Connell said,

    01.24.07 at 11:34 am

    Concerning Ellinias, anyone who is offering peace and brotherhood to the world should be encouraged. Look at today religions,any one of them, from pedophile priests, hateful clerics. Not one of the founders of these religions would accept what is going on in them today. Wealth and power is all it is about for them. Give Ellinian a chance.
    FOR GODS SAKE

  12. R Clark, R.N. said,

    01.24.07 at 1:53 pm

    Finally, Someone speaking up for us who worship the great dieties of old. My patron dieties are Gaia, the earth mother, and Rhea, the mother of Zeus. Gaia and Rhea have lead my life for many years to a rich and rewarding life. How honored I would be if I could worship them at the Pantheon. Please keep me in contact with the movement! Namaske

  13. william beetstra said,

    01.25.07 at 5:54 am

    Those wishing to use the Olympian Calendar should note that the contemporary Julian-Gregorian calendar does not have a year Zero. The Christian calendrists apparently considered zero to imply scepticism toward the omnipresence of God.

    If I am wrong, correct me, please, but I do believe we would now be celebrating the year 2784 (776 + 1 [year zero] + 2,007).

    I remain persuaded that the Olympian order was a remarkably astute presentation of archetypical features of human action. For amusement’s sake, I attempted to reconstruct it more formally and found that it would be not unreasonable to include Dionysios, Heracles, Prometheus, Aesculapius, Mnemosyne, Rhea, Dike, and Metis in at least the role of essential “satellites” of the conventional twelve.

    Such significant figures as Hades, Hecate, and Persephone seem to be a negative mirror of the Olympians, but I couldn’t manage quite as systematic an ordering of them as it appeared the Olympians and their associates had, possibly because so many of the Olympians themselves had their shadowy, “underworldly” aspects as well.

    Unfortunately all the thinking involved is variously metaphorical or “dialectical” or “teleological” and, orderly though it might be, it’s not the sort of order that would be currently accepted as appropriately “scientific.” Perhaps, perhaps, it might be better to look at the Olympian religion as something suspended between logic and mysticism, empiricism and metaphor, and like Mother Gaea, capable of giving rise to them both. After all, that religion developed wonderfully well both as sophisticated art and as the first clearly scientific sort of philosophy.

    I congratulate Ellinais on having the dignity, the eloquence, and the fortitude to force contemporary Greece and European civilization in general to confront its single most important intellectual and artistic ancestor.

  14. Atheen said,

    02.26.07 at 10:14 pm

    I think it’s fantastic that the 12 are being honoured once more and for a certainty it should be within the original temples, it is why they were built.

    I’m not sure that we can call the ancient religions non-violent as there is much documented violence surrounding the Olympians, Τροία being a prime example of a war fought in their names on both sides.

    However, this is not saying that the religion would be violent now and I do give the Ellinais my full encouragement.

  15. Papoa said,

    09.02.08 at 3:00 am

    I personally think that Greece’s revival is coming, It once used to be the center of the world with its culture and intelligence. After it was crushed by outside religion the people there became an emotional slave, they no longer could think proudly of their culture and histroy, which stopped their progress. The only way Greece is going to become what it was thousand years ago is to bring back their culture and their gods. i congratulate the greeks on taking the step in reviving their culture and heritage

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