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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 

 

Three things stand out in my memory from my trip to the ancient city of Ephesus, City of the Moon.

The first, quite frankly, was the public toilet. Astoundingly, the row of side-by-side toilet seats—the ancestors were social people—looked exactly—exactly—like modern toilet seats.

But these were hand-carved from marble. Wow.

The second was the civic amphitheater. Here Saul of Tarsus—later known as “saint” Paul—was nearly lynched by an angry mob for blaspheming the city's patron goddess, the famously many-breasted Artemis (Diana) of Ephesus. Megálê hê Ártemis tôn Efesíôn! they chanted: Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!

According to the New Testament book of Acts, the mob was led by a guild of souvenir-manufacturers, cynically worried about loss of revenue. (Why do non-pagans find it so difficult to believe that we, too, might love our gods?) Unfortunately, in the end a conscientious city official intervened to save “Paul's” life.

During my visit to the theater, I had the pleasure of standing in the middle of the stage and chanting, in modern pronunciation, the chant of the ancients: Megháli i Ártemis tôn Efesíôn!

Indeed, as reputed, the acoustics were wonderful.

My third memory from the day is much more humble, but—in many ways—the most telling of all.

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  • Jamie
    Jamie says #
    Mr. Posch, That story is awesome. Praise be to Artemis, Goddess of the forest and the swamplands, of the Moon and the wild plac

 

Scene: Department store, Women's Wear

Brassiere display, two racks side-by-side.

Sign on first rack:

Bras for Cowans

(Shows regular two-cup brassieres.)

Sign on second rack:

Bras for Witches

(Shows bras with three, four, and five cups.)

 

You know about witches' nipples: we've got extra. All the better to feed our familiars with, they say.

Polymastia: the condition of having extra breasts. Some years back, I gave a workshop on the subject at a local festival. My plan was to discuss the lore from the trials. I hadn't expected the workshop to turn into a show-and-tell. Turns out, some witches actually do have extras. That's just how some bodies are made, although of course in this particular instance we do have to factor in a certain self-selecting demographic.

In the minds of the Hunters, of course, a witch's polymastia made her something less than human. Humans have two nipples; animals have many. The witch's extra nipples demonstrate her essentially bestial nature.

Still, I can't quite help but think of Many-Breasted Artemis of Ephesus: Goddess of Witches, She Who Feeds the World. Like Goddess, apparently, like votary.

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Passion for Life Can Manifest as Major Anxiety during Crisis

I used to think my huge anxiety, angst, and nervousness meant something was deeply wrong with me. Then one day the Goddess told me the intensity of those feelings stems from my wild, free spirit. I would’ve thought that was contradictory, but when She showed me the whole picture, it made sense.

 

Emotionally and spiritually, I’m in fairly decent shape. Am reasonably serene, given the pandemic and my statistically being at greater risk of dying in it. But anxiety visits. Sometimes, it overwhelms me. Right now, my stomach’s in a knot, but at least I’m not sobbing today.

 

It really helps when I remember that my abundance of intense feelings is appropriate and part of my passionate nature, and that passion is a gift I was given by the Goddess, and that I enjoy right down to my toes. Feeling passionate about life’s ups and downs of is part of my vitality—my life force expressing itself. I want to honor that.

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