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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in Crete
Has the Phaistos Disk Been Cracked? by Carol P. Christ

Recent headlines in the international press announced that the enigmatic language of the ancient Cretan “Phaistos Disk” has been translated—in part—by the Welch-Cretan scholar Gareth Owens. Owens states that the Phaistos Disk records an ancient hymn to a Mother Goddess. More specifically he claims that one side is dedicated to a Pregnant Goddess and the other to a Birth-Giving Goddess.

All of this is very exciting, but is he right?

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Carol P. Christ
    Carol P. Christ says #
    Thanks Steve. For readers who don't understand, in a syllabic language Carol might come out ca-ru or ca-ru-lu because there are no
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Good analysis, Carol. I've never been convinced by attempts to read Linear A as an Indo-European language. Indo-European languages

Posted by on in Paths Blogs
The Crane Dance: Walking the Worlds

The Labyrinth may be the most well-known and widespread symbol to come out of ancient Minoan spirituality, but it is a static image. What if it were to come alive, to move, to dance? It did so on ancient Crete, and it still does today in Greek folk dances. And the motions of this sinuous dance have many layers of meaning. Let’s explore some of them. Maybe we’ll be inspired to set our own feet moving. 

The Labyrinth-in-motion I’m talking about is known as the Crane Dance or Geranos Dance (the word geranos is Greek for ‘crane’ – the bird, not the construction equipment). The Greeks immortalized it in their version of the Theseus myth. You’ve probably heard the tale of Theseus traveling to Crete as one of the fourteen Athenian youths who were the tribute (that is, the sacrifice) to King Minos and his horrible monster, the Minotaur. The king’s daughter Ariadne gives him a ball of yarn by which he marks his path into the Labyrinth, then uses it to find his way out again after slaying the Minotaur. Having accomplished his heroic goal, he rescues the youths and returns home to Athens. That’s the short version, but it leaves out something Theseus does on the way home. 

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Meet the Minoans: The Great Goddess Rhea

I decided I wanted to begin a series of posts about the gods and goddesses of ancient Crete, and I figured I’d start with Ariadne, since she is the deity most strongly associated with the Minoans in popular culture. But I just couldn’t manage to get going with the writing; then Rhea asserted herself, popping up online and in conversations, and I realized she should be first. She was the Great Mother Goddess who presided over the Minoan pantheon in much the same way that my maternal grandmother was the matriarch of my extended family. So it’s appropriate to begin with Rhea. We’ll be starting at the top, so to speak.

Please bear in mind that our knowledge of the Minoan deities comes down to us from the later Greeks, and is filtered through their religious and cultural perceptions, which were different from the Minoan worldview. In order to understand any Minoan god or goddess, we have to dig underneath the writings of Greeks such as Homer and Diodorus Siculus to find our way back to the earlier levels.

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Carol Christ on Voices of the Sacred Feminine Radio
Listen to Carol Christ on Joy of Life in Ancient Crete 6 pm PST July 16 or listen later online-Voices of the Sacred Feminine with Karen Tate.

Joy of Life in Ancient Crete w/Carol Christ& Matthew Fox on Meister Echhart
 
Scholar, author and foremother, Carol Christ joins us tonight to discuss The Goddess and the Joy of Life in Ancient Crete.  We'll delve into new research on matriarchies, the difference from patriarchy, define "love is free" in matriarchal societies and chat about Crete being a "gift giving" society.   We'll talk about ancient rituals on Crete, redefine patriarchal myths and discuss the "immanental turn" in feminist theologies - and more.....
 
Join Carol in Crete on a Goddess Pilgrimage www.goddessariadne.org
 
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b2ap3_thumbnail_Crocus-gatherer-from-Akrotiri.jpg

I’m delighted to be writing this blog for you every month about walking the Minoan path. I thought I’d start by letting you know how I got to this place, this most unusual practice within the varied world of modern Paganism. If you work with Ariadne and her tribe on a regular basis, or would like to, I would love to hear from you. For me, it started with a few pretty pictures…

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    There'd be different greens for different occasions, I'd imagine. Probably (to judge from contemporary usage) cypress for the Feas
  • Laura Perry
    Laura Perry says #
    I was thinking mainly of Winter Solstice, since that's the one you mentioned in the comment above. I'm sure the Minoans had a Feas
  • Laura Perry
    Laura Perry says #
    I can see using any of those except willow; it's deciduous, so not available as greenery at Midwinter. But the others - yes! Now I
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Bay, olive, palm, willow...
  • Laura Perry
    Laura Perry says #
    Lucy Goodison wrote about the solstice alignment in Potnia, the journal of the Proceedings of the 8th International Aegean Confere

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
The Turtle Goddess of Myrtos

This strange little Goddess found on an altar in the early Minoan village of Myrtos Fournou-Korifi, which was inhabited in the third millennium BCE.  She is a pitcher Goddess holding a pitcher. Liquid can be poured on an altar from the jug she holds in her snakelike arms.  

 

The long neck of the Goddess puzzled me until I saw turtles stretching their necks in the pools at the archaeological site of Kato Zakros in Crete.  When one of the women on the Goddess Pilgrimage to Crete suggested that the Goddess of Myrtos could be a Turtle Goddess, I immediately nodded my head.

b2ap3_thumbnail_european-terrapin.jpg

The little turtles that are found in Greece in ponds and spring sources are incredibly curious: they swim over to “greet” visitors with their heads out of the water, pause to stare, and then as if to say “I’m scared now,” duck quickly back down into the water, only to emerge again.

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