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Tuesday, January 18, 2022

The bloodless sacrifice in Orphism and the ancient practices of sacrifice

Petar Gramatikovhttps://www.europeantimes.news
Dr. Petar Gramatikov is the Editor in Chief and Director of The European Times. He is a member of the Union of Bulgarian Reporters. Dr. Gramatikov has more than 20 years of Academic experience in different institutions for higher education in Bulgaria. He also examined lectures, related to theoretical problems involved in the application of international law in religious law where a special focus has been given to the legal framework of New Religious Movements, freedom of religion and self-determination, and State-Church relations for plural-ethnic states. In addition to his professional and academic experience, Dr. Gramatikov has more than 10 years Media experience where he hold a positions as Editor of a tourism quarterly periodical “Club Orpheus” magazine – “ORPHEUS CLUB Wellness” PLC, Plovdiv; Consultant and author of religious lectures for the specialized rubric for deaf people at the Bulgarian National Television and has been Accredited as a journalist from “Help the Needy” Public Newspaper at the United Nations Office in Geneva, Switzerland.

Many hypotheses have been launched from antiquity to modern times in search of a bridge between the ancient Thracian religion, based on the teachings of Orpheus, and the Christian religion, adopted by early Christian antiquity in our lands. The story of Cain and Abel gives us two alternatives – one, being a farmer, offered to God the fruits of his labor, and the other, as a herdsman and hunter, offered blood sacrifices.

Sacrifice in the religious sense is everything valuable that a person condemns and gives to God from his property, and initially the sacrificial idea and the initial motive is to express gratitude, reverence and devotion to God. The old Bulgarian technical term “sacrifice” is from the verb “eat”. (burn), as used in the Book of Genesis, chapter 4, of the Old Bulgarian preface to the Bible.

The sacrifice is “the bread of the Lord” (Num. 28: 2); “Food (bread) on the fire”, other-Hebrew. “Lechim isshe” (Lev. 3:11). Sacrificial salt was also used as food. This understanding is not just anthropomorphism or sociomorphism, but symbolism. In the case of sacrifice, it is not the sacrificial material that is most important, but the faith and the mental disposition of the bearer. Moses gives a regular form of sacrifice (Hebrew for “tamid”), which becomes a sacred act, as in the temple in the morning and evening a lamb was offered as a burnt offering.

According to the sacrificial material are:

1 / blood sacrifices (yawn), i.e. bringing animals from the herd, or

2 / bloodless sacrifices (other-Hebrew Mineach), expressed in the offering of plant works, incl. and the sacrifices of the wine of the grape blood, as it is called in Sir. 50:16), oil, water (on the feast of Purification).

According to their purpose and purpose, the victims are divided into: 1 / sacrifice of burnt offering (other-Hebrew “ola” from the chapter “ala”, part. Fem., = To rise; “kalil” = whole);

2 / peaceful sacrifice (other-Hebrew “yawn” from the chapter kolya + “shelamim” from the chapter “shalam” = I am peaceful, Latin sakrificium pacificum;

3 / repentant sacrifices: a) for sin (Hebrew “hattat” or “hatta”; from the chapter “hata” = sin against God, against men, cf. Lev. 4: 1 et seq.); b) for a crime (Hebrew, I become guilty, I atone for my guilt, cf. Lev. 5: 1).

The division of Wolz is according to the way the blood sacrifices are performed. The rest of the sacrificial animal was burned outside the camp in a clean place. Only a sin committed with a “bold hand” (Hebrew “bayad rama”) Chisl. 15:30 I could be redeemed with a sacrifice. A ram or a male lamb was offered as a sacrifice for guilt, because in ancient times they were used as a medium of exchange. The main idea in the sacrifice is satisfaction (satisfaction).

The transgression was calculated in silver shekels + 1/5 more, due to market prices and the inflation index. The ransom for the firstborn (mother) sons, for example, was 5 shekels. According to the Talmud, the sacrifice of the first-born from the field (Hebrew “bikurim”) (from the first fruits, the first beetles = Hebrew “solve bikuri”) should have been at least 1/60 of the whole harvest.

The only case of consent to a man’s sacrifice before Yahweh is contained in the story of Abraham, who sets out to bring his son Isaac to Mount Moriah (Gen. 22). But it is in this story that human sacrifice is categorically denied as pleasing to the true God. The age of the biblical patriarch on biblical and Roman messages abounds with examples of human sacrifices and child sacrifices to pagan Mesopotamian, Canaanite, or Egyptian deities such as Baal, Molech, the Ammonite god Milcom, the Moabite Kamos, the Assyrian gods Agahim Suko. and Tartak.

“He (Elagabalus) consecrated his god Elagabalus on the Palatine Hill just opposite the Imperial Palace and dedicated a temple to him. He said that the cult of the Jews and the Samaritans, as well as the Christian religion, must be transferred there in order for the service of the god Elagabalus to possess the secrets of all religions. “

From: History of the Augustus / Elagabalus, 3 / (quoted in Nomo L., Les Empereures Romains et le Christisnisme, Paris, 1931)

At imp. Elagabalus / Varius Avitus Bassianus /, in 218, Trimontium received the status of neocor and became the center of the cult of Apollo, the god of the sun / Apollo of Kendris /.

Three bronze figurines – of Orpheus, Apollo and Dionysus, were bought and saved from smuggled export by the executive director of the company “Plena” Nikolay Kolev. The statuettes are from the II and the beginning of the III century and are copies of ancient statues, according to the Bulgarian archaeologist N. Ovcharov. The figurine of Orpheus was found at the foot of the Thracian sanctuary Tatul in the area of ​​Momchilgrad, and the other two – in the temple of Dionysus in the sacred Thracian city of Perperikon near Kardzhali, studied by the expedition of Nikolai Ovcharov. The sculptures were returned to the historical museum in Kardzhali, where they will be restored and exhibited to visitors. According to scientists, it is possible that the miniature images of Apollo, Orpheus and Dionysus were part of a composition composed of statuettes of deities and used in ancient times as a portable altar (cf. Greta Marinova, “Businessman saved Orpheus, Apollo and Dionysus”). to “Novinar”, 05.08.2005). Imp. Alexander the Great (222-235) was a religious eclectic. In his prayer room, next to the busts of Apollonius of Thebes (the magician of Greco-Latin antiquity, 2nd century AD) and Orpheus, stood the busts of Christ and Abraham; his mother Julia Mameia summoned to her palace Origen, who was the most prominent Neoplatonist in antiquity (cf. Bolotov, Lectures on the History of the Ancient Church, vol. 2, p. 112).

“Apart from the purifications and not without connection with them, sacrifices were made during the Orphic mysteries. It is generally believed that the sources pointing to Orpheus as the founder of the most sacred mysteries in Greece (Eleusis), associated with respect for the culture of agriculture and refraining from killing living beings and therefore from blood sacrifice. Based on this, it is assumed by analogy that the Orphic ritual initially differed from the official one for the Greek polis in that it did not practice blood sacrifice. “

 As the famous Bulgarian researcher on the subject tells us: BOGDAN BOGDANOV, Orpheus and the ancient mythology of the Balkans, Second electronic edition. Sofia, 2006, www.bogdanbogdanov.net.

“It is impossible to clarify the history of the issue, but (cf. BOGDAN BOGDANOV, op. Cit., P. 56) the typological difference is completely perceptible. The blood sacrifice, so important for Greek religious and social behavior, is performed: 1) by a priest-citizen official, not by a professional religious figure, and 2) in front of an organic group of citizens. In its religious function to connect the local and other spheres of the world, the Greek sacrifice rather “strengthens” the local sphere. While whether it solves the problems of the individual or connects the participants in a temporary community, the Orphic sacrificial ritual seems to ignore the social inclusion of the person and is more interested in connecting the local and the afterlife of the world. In the circle of Greek Orphism, this goal was probably better defined by bloodless sacrifice, although blood sacrifice can be practiced with another function – not socio-structuring, as in Greek sacrifice, but cosmostructuring, as in ancient India. sacrifice. ” The following information from Plato gives an idea of ​​what the bloodless Orphic sacrifice was expressed in (Laws, 782 p. = K p. 212): and they refrained from eating flesh because it was ungodly, and they defiled the altars of God with blood. Orpheus’s later “Hymns” complete the picture with information about burning seeds and incense with fragrant herbs. Incense is not only cleansing, but like sacrifice also a connecting action. Through this type of sacrifice, a culture of pure agriculture is evident, different from the one that hides (quoted in BOGDAN BOGDANOV, op. Cit., P. 58) the Greek blood sacrifice with its care for meat food and strengthening of the socially organized collective.

The main thing about the Orphic ritual is that it resembles magic and therefore relies not so much on the connecting function of the victim as on the power of the spoken word. Purification, bloodless sacrifice, prayer and incantation can also be performed outside the Orphic sacrament. The big question is what was presented during the sacrament itself. An early source (Demosthenes, On the Wreath XVIII, 259 = K St. 205) reports that when he grew up, the orator Aeschines helped his mother in initiation rituals, read books to her and participated in strange cleansing actions, anointed himself with mud and bran and at the end of the purification, he made the participants say, “I have avoided evil, I have found better.” Probably Orphic action for initiation is found in “Clouds” by Aristophanes (v. 260 ff.) / 59 p. / – upon entering the school of Socrates, the hero Strepsiad is sprinkled with flour. In the Orphic dedication ritual, there were also sacred objects such as the basket (kiste) with secret things, which was widespread in many mysterious circles. For the Orphic mysteries, such secret objects must have been the toys with which, according to the theological story, the Titans licked little Dionysus. In one source (Clem. Alex. Protrept. II 17, 2 – 18, 1 = K 34) about the transgression of the Titans, who deceived the young Dionysus, two verses are quoted from the poet of initiation the Thracian Orpheus, (p. 60) listing these toys (athyrmata): cone (cone), rhombus (pump), golden apples. More ritual objects are added to the comment: ball, dice, mirror, short wave.

For a century, archaeologists have been searching for the ancient sanctuary with the oracle of the god Dionysus. It is believed that finding it in value will be equal to the discovery of Troy and Mycenae. Information about it is extremely scarce and it is known for sure only that the temple was in the Holy Mountain – the Rhodopes. To receive the prophecy, the so-called a wine-fire rite in which one foretold the height of the blazing fire after the wine had been poured on the altar. This is not surprising given that wine and fire are central to the worship of the god Dionysus. The making of the wine itself was perceived as a symbolic story about the life and sufferings of the deity in its Thracian prototype. The crushing and tearing of the fruit was associated with the tearing of the Thracian Dionysus by the Titans. It is no coincidence that the processing of the grapes was a mystery, to which sad and monotonous songs were sung, more like a complaint.

“For the ancient Rhodopes, they were also connected with the famous sanctuary of Dionysus, located on a high peak in the land of the Bessi, and hitherto unlocated with certainty. Suetonius (late I – early II century) says that when Octavius, the father of the future emperor Octavian Augustus, visited in 60 – 59 BC. this sanctuary in the sacred forest of Dionysus inquired of the oracle of the deity about the fate of his son by a barbaric rite, this was confirmed to him by the priests (that the son would become master of the whole world) because after the wine was poured on the altar, such a large a flame blazed as it rose above the top of the sanctuary, all the way to the sky – a sign similar to that which only Alexander the Great received when he sacrificed on this same altar, “said Prof. Velizar Velkov, winner of the Herder Prize. Alexander the Great was in the sanctuary of Dionysus in the Rhodopes in 335 BC. All this suggests that the sanctuary of Dionysus operated continuously from the time of Orpheus (XIII century BC), in the time of Alexander the Great (335 BC) and during the visit of Octavius – the father of Octavian Augustus (60 – 59 BC), when his son was 3 years old. Or the same altar in the Rhodopes existed more than a millennium after Orpheus.

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