Summer Solstice Celebrated by Ancient Religions



Summer SolsticeAccording to an article posted on the BBC, there are still many Greeks who follow Pre-Christian gods. For those, June 21, is considered as a very unique day.

Many of them participate in the Prometheia festival, an event which honors Greek Titan Prometheus, who is credited with the creation of man from clay and the theft of fire for human use, an act that enabled progress and civilization.

People who worship the ancient Greek gods believe that Greece is under Christian occupation. The festival begins with six runners running the six miles (10 km) up to Mount Olympus.

According to BBC, in 2007, an official of the Orthodox Church described them as, “a handful of miserable resuscitators of a degenerate dead religion.” But as Tryphon Olympios said, today the relationship between the church and their followers is much more peaceful. Olympios is a philosophy professor and founder of the Return of the Hellenes movement.

“They have understood that we are not dangerous and we are not pagans and Satanists,” he said. “We are peaceful people and come with ideas that are useful for society.”

But let’s talk about the history a little. How did ancient Greeks celebrated this special day?

According to ancient Greeks, Tammuz becomes Adonis (Lord). This is a time that is also sacred to all high priestesses and hiereias (female guardians of temples and communities). It is also the sacred time of Athena (Goddess of wisdom). For the Greeks, the New Year began on the first new moon after the summer solstice. It was celebrated by a festival to Athena so that rain would come to the crops. A procession was held in which food offerings and new cloths were brought to Her statue. The statue was cleaned and then dressed in this new finery. Midsummer was also the time to honor Prometheus (Sun Wheel) for stealing fire from the Gods and bringing it to His creation – mankind.

 


1 COMMENT

  1. Jesus seems to have been a decent fellow but the religion itself says many stupid things too. For instance turn the other cheek is for cowards. Being anti-wealth is also irrational. Most of the decent parts of Christian philosophy can be extracted from pre-Christian ancient Greeks anyhow (and then some)

    The fact is Christianity is not native to Greeks. It was a religion that was forced on Greeks by the Latin Romans (who forced It on all Europeans). Early Christians ended the Olympics. Burned down pagan libraries. Closed the neo-platonic academy in Athens. Massacred Greeks that didn’t want to convert. It was only in recent centuries that this fact was uncovered (as the all powerful church lead us to believe for a thousand years conversion was a voluntary choice of our ancestors)

    That said, we should support our church today with the caveat they are also tolerant towards pagan and even non-religious Greeks. Our church was instrumental in protecting our language and helping form Greece today. They are the only bonds that remains that is still essentially only for Greeks. They are far far more Greek friendly than the anti-Greek anti-nationalist communists (who are more ideologically aligned to foreign communists than Greeks and Hellenism)