The Mystery-Religions

This vintage examine bargains an knowing of the traditional non secular cults, exploring their charm and eventual failure within the face of Christianity. issues comprise the Eleusinian mysteries of historic Greece; Asiatic cults of Cybele, the Magna Mater, and Attis; Dionysian teams; Orphics; Egyptian devotees of Isis and Osiris; Mithraism; and others.

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The general public carrier of the good mom was once frequently reserved for targeted events similar to the once a year spring competition, or Megalensia,478 first formally famous through Claudius, however the heritage of which stretches again to an early date, spring being the season which from time immemorial said new lifestyles. The social gathering opened at the Ides (15th) of March (a day marked within the calendar of Philocalus 479 as Canna intrat) with a procession of the varsity of the Cannophori (Reed-bearers). per week later (22nd)—marked arbor intrat within the related calendar—the collage of the Dendrophori (Tree-bearers) marched in solemn procession wearing the sacred pine wrapped in woollen fillets and embellished with fillets, commemorating Attis’ act. The twenty third used to be probably,480 a minimum of in later occasions, saw because the day of the detoxing of the Trumpets. The twenty fourth, the Dies sanguinis, used to be the excessive day of the pageant, saw by means of strict fasting and lamentation and by means of participation in a sacrament in the course of the evening; it used to be additional marked by means of the self-flagellation and laceration of the frenzied one hundred forty Galli. at the present time of grief—the 3rd after Attis’ death—was succeeded at the twenty fifth through the Hilaria, or wild jubilation over the Resurrection of Attis. Such were the emotional pressure of those days of demanding grief and pleasure that the twenty sixth was once saw as an afternoon of rest—the Requietio. The competition closed at the twenty seventh with the Lavatio, or the showering of the silver snapshot of the mummy and the articles de culte within the Almo by means of the school of the Fifteen. Thereafter the sacred gadgets have been carried out again to the temple by way of the clergymen, observed by way of a wildly jubilant carnival during which significant licence was once authorized, and through which the Galli took up the gathering. the character of the divine providers and their frequency in Mithraism are very imperfectly identified to us. 481 we all know of the life of an ordo sacerdotum, yet even if the sacerdotal succession should be strictly maintained within the Western international locations as within the homelands of Mithraism is a moot query. the obligation of any such clergy was once to have fun the day-by-day offices,482 maintain—at least within the jap chapels 483—the perpetual holy altar hearth, invoke the planet of the day, supply the common sacrifices for the adherents, and preside at initiations. the nice pageant of the Mithraic calendar used to be hung on December 25, the Natalis Invicti, which within the lands of the Occident most likely took where of the Mithrakana 484 within the East. the 1st day of the week used to be devoted to the sunlight, to whom prayers have been recited three times day-by-day, morning, midday, and night. 485 particular prone have been most likely hung on the Sunday. The 16th was once stored holy to Mithra. “ The small measurement of the Mithraea, and the scanty variety of the participants of the institutions helping each one, make it super not going that there has been whatever like commonplace congregational worship, or that the trustworthy assembled there with the exception of initiations or conferences for conferring different 141 degrees,” says Legge.

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