background preloader


Syncretism /ˈsɪŋkrətɪzəm/ is the combining of different, often seemingly contradictory beliefs, while melding practices of various schools of thought. Syncretism involves the merger and analogizing of several originally discrete traditions, especially in the theology and mythology of religion, thus asserting an underlying unity and allowing for an inclusive approach to other faiths. Syncretism also occurs commonly in expressions of arts and culture (known as eclecticism) as well as politics (syncretic politics). Nomenclature, orthography, and etymology[edit] The Oxford English Dictionary first attests the word syncretism in English in 1618. It derives from modern Latin syncretismus, drawing on Greek συγκρητισμός (synkretismos), meaning "Cretan federation". The Greek word occurs in Plutarch's (1st century AD) essay on "Fraternal Love" in his Moralia (2.490b). Social and political roles[edit] Religious syncretism[edit] Ancient Greece[edit] Judaism[edit] Roman world[edit] Christianity[edit]

Related:  Symbolsneuropharmacology/(religious/spiritual)

Strange loop A strange loop arises when, by moving only upwards or downwards through a hierarchical system, one finds oneself back to where one started. Strange loops may involve self-reference and paradox. The concept of a strange loop was proposed and extensively discussed by Douglas Hofstadter in Gödel, Escher, Bach, and is further elaborated in Hofstadter's book I Am a Strange Loop, published in 2007. Evohé, Isis! [This Hymn to Isis recognizes her as the central Spiritual Being of Reverence in the Gnostic Pagan Tradition. "Evohé" (pronounced eh-voh-ay) is synonymous with "Ave," as in "Ave, Maria." Mary, the Mother of Christ, is actually a sanitized, revisionist interpretation of Isis-as-Mara, the Great Sea of Collective Unconsciousness from which Divine Mind, or Christ Consciousness is reborn. Other allegorical forms of The Goddess include Io, a Greek manifestation of Hathor; Cybele; the Great Hindu Goddess Kali; Gaia; and, in a biological (mortal) manifestation, the famous Cleopatra, last of the pharaohs. Isis is the Earth Mother.

Dionysian Mysteries The Dionysian Mysteries were a ritual of ancient Greece and Rome which used intoxicants and other trance-inducing techniques (like dance and music) to remove inhibitions and social constraints, liberating the individual to return to a natural state. It also provided some liberation for those marginalized by Greek society: women, slaves and foreigners. In their final phase the Mysteries shifted their emphasis from a chthonic, underworld orientation to a transcendental, mystical one, with Dionysus changing his nature accordingly (similar to the change in the cult of Shiva).

Carpe diem Translation[edit] Carpe is the second-person singular present active imperative of carpō, "pick or pluck," used by Ovid to mean "enjoy, seize, use, make use of".[1] Diem is the accusative case of the noun "dies", that means "day". A more literal translation of "Carpe diem" would thus be "enjoy the day" or "pluck the day [as it is ripe]"—i.e. to enjoy the moment; however, in its modern-day usage, the "diem" usually gets abstracted as "opportunity." Simple Symbol Meaning Simple Symbol Meanings This page on simple symbol meaning is an attempt to lay a foundation for very basic visual symbols, like circles, triangles, squares, etc. For example, if we look at the triskelion, we can visually whittle down this motif to a triangle shape. Therefore, by contemplating the triangle, we gather more insight into the message of the triskelion (as well as other symbolism drawing on the power of three).

I Am a Strange Loop I Am a Strange Loop is a 2007 book by Douglas Hofstadter, examining in depth the concept of a strange loop to explain the sense of "I". The concept of a strange loop was originally developed in his 1979 book Gödel, Escher, Bach. Hofstadter had previously expressed disappointment with how Gödel, Escher, Bach, which won the Pulitzer Prize in 1980 for general nonfiction, was received. In the preface to its 20th-anniversary edition, Hofstadter laments that the book was perceived as a hodgepodge of neat things with no central theme. He states: "GEB is a very personal attempt to say how it is that animate beings can come out of inanimate matter. What is a self, and how can a self come out of stuff that is as selfless as a stone or a puddle?"

Isis Temple of Isis in Philae, Egypt Isis (Ancient Greek: Ἶσις, original Egyptian pronunciation more likely "Aset" or "Iset") is a goddess in Ancient Egyptian religious beliefs, whose worship spread throughout the Greco-Roman world. She was worshipped as the ideal mother and wife as well as the patroness of nature and magic. She was the friend of slaves, sinners, artisans and the downtrodden, but she also listened to the prayers of the wealthy, maidens, aristocrats and rulers.[1] Isis is often depicted as the mother of Horus, the hawk-headed god of war and protection (although in some traditions Horus's mother was Hathor). Mithraic mysteries Double-faced Mithraic relief. Rome, 2nd to 3rd century AD (Louvre Museum) The Mithraic Mysteries were a mystery religion practised in the Roman Empire from about the 1st to 4th centuries AD. The name of the Persian god Mithra (proto-Indo-Iranian Mitra), adapted into Greek as Mithras, was linked to a new and distinctive imagery. Writers of the Roman Empire period referred to this mystery religion by phrases which can be anglicized as Mysteries of Mithras or Mysteries of the Persians;[1][2] modern historians refer to it as Mithraism,[1] or sometimes Roman Mithraism.[3][4] The mysteries were popular in the Roman military.[5]