As I am awake and the house is quiet with everyone else asleep, I have found a moment to wish everyone a blessed Dionysia, in celebration of the birth of Dionysos. I celebrate this as a 12 day affair as per what my dear friend and I have learned from teachers in Hellas. His information on the 12 days can be found here. This is perhaps one of the most blessed celebrations in the year calendar, and is of great importance in relation to the soul, thus it is with great pleasure and happiness that I greet the days as they come.
As of sundown last night this is the first day in celebration of his birth. On this day we greet too Hestia, she whose domain proceeds all others. I greet her holy fire that brings the first movements that bring forth life, the movements that bring forth conception. Her flame is ever moving, within the heart of all things, hers is the first spark that kindles existence. In Orphic Cosmogony we learn that her domain is the first movement which brought forth the cosmos. A kind of cosmic intake of breath of the first creative substance, a contraction, that brings forth the second holy substance that shall come to mingle with it and bring forth the cosmos. This is as much as I feel free to say about here informally on my blog, though my friend may have more information on it his website above regarding this subject.
As her domain works into the manifestation of the cosmos, so to does it within every soul and being. She arranges the movements, even as in days gone by that people who by their movement strike the flint upon the steel, that the beginnings of life may surge outward from her seat at the epicenter. We can say perhaps this is not unlike the currents generated by the contact between the sperm entering the ovum. The cells will quickly divide from here, but this is the first contact of movement in the generation of life. Hers is the spark which pushes life forward. And so even as we are celebrating the birth of Dionysos we are remembering too that he too, like things, began under the influence of Hestia’s domain through which he had to pass in his own creation and beginning. So we hail Hestia on the first day of the birth of Dionysos.
For the duration of this first day we see everyone else busy with celebrations of Christmas to celebrate the birth of their own lord and savior, one which biblical scholars admit is quite askew from when biblical literature indicates the birth of their savior occurred. And yet for so long that the birth of their savior been ascribed over that of another that it is really a non-issue, at least in my eyes. They celebrate the birth of theirs and I will celebrate the birth of Dionysos the Liberator, the ivy-crowned one, the freer of souls by his mysteries. We celebrate it as the days imperceptibly begin the lengthen, just by a manner of seconds, following the winter solstice of the sun at the dawn of the mystic month of Hephaistos (the Orphic pair of Hestia who we also hail on this day). For Hephaistos gives form to all things, and Dionysos appears here in this month, born as it were in the Corycion cave in Parnassos in the peak above Delphi. It is here that the Thyiades, in the sacred cave, are said to find the infant Dionysos in the liknon basket, which shall make a reappearance in the Lenaea in which Dionysos is still a babe in the basket, which was represented by a mask in the basket at the festival.
He is the golden child of Zeus, the child of promise. And the heart leaps for gladness at his return to us. The bull which was torn asunder, the ivy which was torn, and all consumed, returns even as the ivy which lies for a time dormant will suddenly awaken and bear forth new tender leaves with its life. The lord returns and the soul rejoices.
And so on this first day of Dionysia we celebrate his birth in the Corycion cave and we honor Hestia, with Hephaistos, too. In my families house it is a great thing for me that there are plans, to light a fire for the gathering of the family. And from the center of the house the light and warmth shall embrace all, warming bodies and hearts.