Unit 2-ch 8-dyonysus

Unit 2-ch 8-dyonysus - CHAPTER 8 DIONYSUS ROOTED IN EARTH AND ECSTASY MAIN POINTS 1 Each winter Apollo left Delphi to live with the Hyperboreans a

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CHAPTER 8 DIONYSUS: ROOTED IN EARTH AND ECSTASY MAIN POINTS 1. Each winter Apollo left Delphi to live with the Hyperboreans, a mythical tribe in the North, and Dionysus moved into Delphi for those three months. 2. The contrast between Apollo and Dionysus: moderation and mental balance versus an irrational power that allows people to explore their potential for emotional and behavioral extremes. 3. Qualities in common: both sons of Zeus, they share his will to power and his creative drive; both are born under difficult circumstances and both establish cults. 4. While both Apollo and Dionysus are associated with “ecstasy”—a standing outside of oneself—there are also important distinctions between them in that respect. Apollo remains aloof from the worshipers who are not themselves possessed by the god: only the Pythia, who speaks in tongues (glossolalia), is. On the other hand, any follower of Dionysus can hope to be seized by the god in an ecstatic frenzy. 5. One theory suggests that Apollo and Dionysus are two sides of the same divinity, combining moderation and excess. Apollo and Dionysus then may represent two equally important aspects of the human psyche. The worshiper may encounter the divine either through oracular knowledge or by orgiastic rites. 6. Both gods inspire poetry, song, and dance—Apollo with his lyre and Dionysus with his timbrel. 7. Dionysus and other male fertility gods of the ancient Near East with whom he is often identified—Tammutz (Dumuzi), Adonis, and Osiris—share a common fate: violent death, descent into the Underworld, and rebirth as immortal beings. 8. Some versions of the myth bring Dionysus to Greece from Thrace, others from Asia Minor. While he brings with him a foreign cult and strange companions and music, he also has the nature, in a paradoxical way, of a native son: his birth, after all, took place in Thebes. 9. Euripides’s play the Bacchae tells of Dionysus’s (Bacchus’s) return to Thebes from Asia Minor with a throng of Asian maenads (female followers of the god). 10. Dionysus’s birth follows the heroic pattern: Hera attempts to prevent Semele from giving birth; in disguise, she convinces Semele that the lover who visits her in the dark is an ogre. Semele persuades her lover to show himself as he really is, and when Zeus appears in a blaze of light, she is incinerated. From her corpse, Zeus takes the embryo of Dionysus and places it in his thigh, from which Dionysus is born. For Euripides’s rationalization of this myth on the basis of linguistic confusion, see Chapter 1. 11. Sprung from Zeus’s genital area, Dionysus is a fertility god representing the
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This note was uploaded on 10/17/2011 for the course CLAS 3302 taught by Professor Landoncook during the Spring '11 term at Texas Tech.

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Unit 2-ch 8-dyonysus - CHAPTER 8 DIONYSUS ROOTED IN EARTH AND ECSTASY MAIN POINTS 1 Each winter Apollo left Delphi to live with the Hyperboreans a

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