Karneia 2011

I celebrated Karneia much in the same fashion I do every year. Not enough folks to participate in the Spartan race, but still very meaningful. I used the small image of the dolphin and boat that I had made during Delphinia to correspond with the use of Apollon’s image in the ship that was filled with flowers and carried as part of the Karneia festival. Apollon the traveler, the god who goes about everywhere. It rather corresponds with the image of Dionysos in the ship but bears a different meaning as we see the Dionysos in the boat as a being which is literally traveling by the boat…he is the god which is accompanies the journey of the soul. Alternatively Apollon is within the boat much in the way that the dolphin leapt into the boat and steered forth the Cretans to Delphi. He inhabits there in the purpose of directing us. This is as much a part of Karneia wherein the god directs the movement of people for which was jointly celebrated in the spirit of the Karneia…the migration of the Doric people. So it seemed appropriate to use this same image I had made for Delphinia here in this case. And this was set before the bust of Apollon and between them was the warmer into which the oil and water was poured as offering. Later in the body of the ritual we offered our grapes to Apollon. It confuses some folks as to why there is a connection between grapes and Apollon in this festival..for we see it in the offering as well as the race which was conducted holding grapes. Apollon is the cultivator essentially, and this imagery of the god associated with the cultivated grape as well as the wheat ears is not unheard of. Images of the god with wheatears has often been celebrated as a representation of the god who brings prosperity..usually among colonies. So the cultivated grape is much of the same in the symbol of the cultivation of the self. And this imagery is seen in the doric colony at Rhodes where an image of a winged Apollon depicted him with grape clusters hanging from his wings. More on this can be read on my website Apollon’s Lyre. In any case the grapes are a necessary part of the ritual. I only wish I had been able to get him a shepherd’s cloak as an offering, or something the nature along those lines, but I did add to the ritual my own poems that I had written for Apollon Karneios for the Karneia. And for this festival I played upon the recorder as well as upon the lyre.

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