Category Archives: Bacchic Things

Commissioned Prayer: To Hypnos

I’ve been getting quite a few commissions for prayers. The latest was one to the God Hypnos. (If you’re interested in commissioning a piece, please check this page for information). 

Prayer to Hypnos
By G. Krasskova
(Written for S.)

Sweet Hypnos,
most benevolent and gracious God,
please hear my prayer.

Grant me the sweetness of sleep
when I seek my rest.
Help me to still my mind,
my racing thoughts,
to put the tensions
and stress of my body aside.
May Your children:
especially Morpheus,
the Oneiroi, and
Phantasmos
bless my slumber.
May my dreams be fruitful.
May I wake refreshed,
even on those occasions
when Your Son Phobetor visits.

Oh God of poppies,
of pleasure and relaxation,
please grant me Your healing touch.
Smile upon me,
place Your gentle hand upon my brow,
and grant me release from my cares
through the grace of sleep,
which only You may bring.

Hail to You, Hypnos,
Husband of Pasiphae,
Daughter of Dionysos,
Who Himself relieves care,
Hail to You, Beautiful God.

hypnos painting2x4

(Hypnos by Grace Palmer. The prayer card is available here.)

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Entry #5 for the Ares Agon

Ares at Gaugamela
By Petros

Koinos waited for them to hit. The Persians were coming. They were screaming as they came and they were terrifying.

He was not feeling so brave at the moment. Despite the heat of the day, he felt cold, even as his sweat dripped beneath his linothorax. He hoped that no one had noticed the piss running down his legs.

He prayed to the Gods that the men next to him wouldn’t see his shaking or see that he could barely keep his sarrisa at the proper height and angle.

He wanted to run.

“Don’t worry boy. I’m here.”

Koinos looked to his right at Amyntas.

Amyntas who rarely spoke. Amyntas who never joined the boisterous drinking after the day’s march.

In fact, last night Amyntas had been alone, just outside of the firelight kneeling in front of a stone he had placed on a stump.

Koinos had blearily noticed him pouring wine over the small black stone that he carried with him on campaign. He could hear him muttering something, though with all the pre-battle revelry going on, it was hard to hear his words.

But, today, he could hear him. His voice was…different.

“Don’t worry boy. I’m here.”

What?

“Today your shield will not drop. Your spear will not shatter. The blood of the barbarians will flow like wine from my brother’s cup.”

Koinos again took his eyes off of the onrushing Persians to glance at Amyntas.

Amyntas seemed larger somehow. His shoulders were rising and falling like a bull’s. His breath loud. His voice more like a growl now.

“Let them fall like harvested grain beneath our blades.”

And then Amyntas turned to Koinos.

“Are you with me boy?”

Koinos stared into the face visible behind the helmet’s face guard. The too-white teeth smiling at him. The eyes glowing the way a man’s never could.

He could only nod, his mouth too dry for words.

“Good boy.”

When the Persian line collided with the Macedonian phalanx, Amyntas, who-was-not-Amyntas, began to laugh.

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Be sure to check out my other sites:

Wyrd Curiosities at Etsy

My academia.edu page

My amazon author page.

Walking the Worlds Journal

My art blog at Krasskova Creations

My blog about all things strange, weird and medieval.

And if you like what you see, consider becoming a sponsor at Patreon.

Shrine pictures

After running about making various offerings to Hermes, I spent the rest of the morning redoing my Hermes shrine, and my Loki and Sigyn shrine. 

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Hermes’ place. ^

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Loki and Sigyn’s place.^

The icon above is by Grace Palmer, and belonged to my mom Fuensanta. 

Spending the Morning with Hermes

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I woke up not in pain this morning (a rarity in winter) and decided to spend the day cleaning my Hermes shrine and my Loki shrine. They are overdue for it. First though, I decided to leave offerings for Hermes in a local park. It had come up for me some time ago that I should leave a random offering to Him in a park, and I’d inadvertently put off dong so.

So that means that after breakfast, I headed to the store to buy the oddest, quirkiest assortment of things for Him. I came out with two shopping bags of games, food, and – I kid you not, an eight ball. (He wanted an eight ball. I said the offerings were quirky). Then I set out. I realized quickly that I wasn’t going to be leaving these at one park, but at several.

Putting on some music I associate with Hermes, I first left the majority of the food offerings at the foot of mount Beacon. I venerate the Mountain spirit there, so the offerings were given to both Hermes and the mountain itself. Then I went to one of the local cemeteries. One of the games Hermes had me buy was a set of dominoes. I left that at the top of the cemetery on a bench, with some of the food offerings. He is guide of the dead and in one of the divination systems I know, dominoes represent the bones of the dead. It seemed fitting.

Then I went down to a park abutted by an out of commission train track. He’s been coming to me with hobo imagery of late, so I left some of the non-food offerings at the tracks, and more at the park itself. The eight ball got left in a park between my home and the next town over. (I used the eight ball and asked, “is this a good place to leave this offering,” nestled in a cleft in some rocks, and the answer “you can rely on it.” LOL.). So that’s where that offering ended up.

Then I wanted to give flowers to Hygeia, and make an offering to Sigyn so I headed to the flower store. While there, I thought that I could make another offering to Hermes (leaving flowers on a random grave) so I put together a nice bouquet of yarrow and belladonna (it’s a really pretty purplish blue color), with some baby’s breath and headed over to one of the cemeteries.

I received a couple of omens while coming home upon which I will be pondering long and hard and a gift (no kledones, though I kept an ear open).  Now I’m going to take a break for lunch and get on with cleaning those shrines. So far, it’s been an awesome morning.

Savage Gods – Part II

There is nothing better than mornings spent with the Gods, whether in devotion to Them or fruitful discussion of Them. Today was one such morning. My friend Markos posted this awesome quote by Walter Otto on his facebook this morning:

“No single Greek god even approaches Dionysus in the horror of his epithets, which near witness to a savagery that is absolutely without mercy… He is called the “render of men”, “the eater of raw flesh”, “who delights in the sword and bloodshed”. We hear not only of human sacrifice in his cult, but also of the ghastly ritual in which a man is torn to pieces. Where does this put us? Surely there can be no further doubt that this puts us into death’s sphere. The terrors of destruction, which make all if life tremble, belong also, as horrible desire, to the kingdom of Dionysus. The monster whose supernatural duality speaks to us from the mask has one side of his nature turned toward eternal night.”

~Walter F. Otto, Dionysus: Myth and Cult

We both love Dionysos dearly (and if I’m not mistaken, Markos actually belongs to Dionysos whereas while I love this God, I pay cultus from the fringes). This quote encapsulates some core elements of His nature. He is a terrible God, in the old sense of the word, as One Who brings terror.

Another friend Paul C. mentioned that He is also “nice,” and I have to agree: He can be immensely nice and gentle (and we agreed that sometimes that is more shattering than any cruelty He could bring to bear on the transformation of our souls). Paul said:

“I’ll say that when I first started with Dionysus I didn’t expect him to be nice.

It was the niceness of him that was almost hard for me to handle at first. Due to my background of abuse and other unfortunate things I have a lot of self-confidence and self-esteem issues. His acceptance and love was unexpected and clearly not coming from myself. It was hard because of the whole host of new ideas and perspectives that I had to confront As your husband (Sannion) explained it and I think he’s right that was the God’s own way of molding and helping me.

So niceness isn’t always painless like you think it would be. Sometimes it’s more painful than cruelty when it runs counterbalance to what is in one’s head.” — Paul C. (quoted with permission)

Still, as I pointed out, it’s never the “nice” that people try to elide from their Gods. It’s the Power. I was asked to explain and the conversation that followed was meaty enough that I wanted to share highlights of it here.

People will go to any lengths to make their Gods sweet, nice, and unthreatening, to insist that their Gods aren’t savage or vicious, violent or bold. We want our Gods civilized and ‘modern.’ We want Gods we can control, or at least Gods that don’t challenge us, that don’t drag us down into the morass of our own shit and force us to look at it, and deal with it. We as a culture want Gods Who won’t interfere with our lives and the priorities we set for ourselves. We want Gods of peace so that we never have to stand naked, afraid, trembling, and possibly bleeding and snot faced before Them. We want characters in a storybook. Just look at any of our communities.

Of course positioning a Deity as any one thing alone is always problematic. A God, any God is never just savage or nice. They *are*. They are in a fullness and complexity of Being that I don’t really think we as human beings quite have the capacity to comprehend at all. We may catch glimpses, but the totality is too immense for us to do more than gnaw upon. Think about the story of Dionysos’ Mother Semele. When She was tricked into forcing Zeus to reveal Himself in the fullness of His power it burned Her to ash. A human being, as we are now, simply does not have the capacity to behold the Gods in Their fullness. The masks They wear are necessary but every so often, oh every so often we get a glimpse of some of the roaring Power that lies beneath.

So yes, Dionysos is nice. I can also attest He’s been incredibly nice and gentle with me. but …that’s not the part the average person is going to erase in their minds, I think. We know He’s nice. That’s not the part most people want to forget.

I saw this over the years with Odin. Any mention of Odin’s darker sides — and oh, He is a terribly savage God. Anyone who thinks His veneer of civilization and culture is anything more than a carefully calculated mask is deluding themselves.—His penchant for ordeal, His violence, His savagery inevitably led to claims that I was making this God into a sadist. “That’s not my Odin.” (#notallOdins) No, buttercup, but it is Odin. Maybe it’s not what He’s showing you, but it is absolutely His nature. The best of us learn to revel in it. Those who can’t? Well, there’s always British TV, fanfiction, and pop culture.

There’s a movie that several people in the conversation brought up, one that has strong Dionysian overtones: “The Witch.” In this movie, the Devil in the shape of a black goat drives a rather neurotic Puritan family to ruin. Well, they drive themselves to ruin, and the goat just does what demonic goats do. (#goatlivesmatter). In the end, the goat transforms into a man and asks the surviving daughter: “Do you wish to live deliciously?”

We agreed that this is Dionysos.

This is the Liberator. I have my suspicions that many of the medieval images of Witches’ sabbats were cultural memories of Bacchanalian frenzies with all the potential savagery that might entail. (#livedeliciously).

We should be careful what we do to our Gods. One thing I’ve learned venerating the Norse Gods is this: if we insist on allowing Them only one avenue of manifestation, only one mask, They’ll take it but it won’t be the best outcome for us. We will get the Gods we deserve. When we deny Them the fullness of Their being, we start denying ourselves too and as that movie so beautifully showed, repression never leads anywhere good. (#lokiwivesoftumblr).

So maybe let us live deliciously.

Especially where our Gods are concerned.

Mothers Card Project Update

I want to give folks an update on how the Mother’s Prayer Card project is going. (I could just title this: Grace Palmer is awesome. She’s been whipping these cards out and they’re gorgeous). 

So far, we have cards completed for 

leto-painting-2x4

Leto, Mother of Apollo and Artemis

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Semele, Mother of Dionysos

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Maia, Mother of Hermes (I think this one is my favorite 🙂  There’s just something about little. baby. Hermes).

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Metis, Mother of Athena

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Thetis, Mother of Achilles

The next card currently in progress is Leda, Mother of Helen and the Dioskouroi. If anyone would like to donate to this card, please contact me at krasskova at gmail.com (usual perks apply). 

Once the cards are all finished, I’ll offer them A) as a complete set; B) as a complete set with a signed copy of the novena book; and C) individually. 

Cards still to be done include Alcmene, Danae, Penelopeia, and Pasiphae. 

Submission to Hermes Agon

Here is another [gorgeous] entry to my 2017 Hermes Agon.  Ellen, the creator, is willing to send this to the first person to make a minimum $50 donation to the Mothers Prayer Card Project. Any takers? (The image de Morgan’s painting “Mercury,” the same as on the cover of my Hermes devotional). 

ellen-hermes

First Entries for the Hermes Agon

“Propylaios”

There is a gate
at which the hero waits.
Quietly, sizing his chances,
flexing his thoughts,
until the dawn of movement
and the sun of a new day.

He tilts his hat at its coming,
tightens his grip
on an ever-present staff,
and then boldly steps forward.
There is a gate,
and from it the hero goes forth.

(by Agi Samothrax)

sexy-hermes

Hermes
Melia Phosphorou

Messenger, storyteller, and dreamer
Protector of home, bringer of fortune
Clever and sarcastic god,
Guide us in dreams and over roads,
You, the giver of grace and of the lyre:
salve for sorrow and despair
Inspiring love, joy, and sleep
Son of Zeus and Maia,
grandson of Atlas who bears the world
Beautiful brother and loyal friend to Apollo,
far shooting lord of the silver bow
Lord of all birds of good omen, all flocks and all herds, and of the lion – wild and free
Sly thief with beguiling charm,
Be remembered, and remember us, too.
Accept this gift, my prayer in song.

A Song for Hermes
Melia Phosphorou

Clever and sarcastic
Guide over roads and through dreams
Athletic and fantastic
Protector of home, Lord of schemes

Wherever we roam
We call you
Save us from harm
Help us pass through

Keeper of flocks
Please count us
Among your own

Trickster and Deceiver,
With your wit, guide us through
You are heart delighting
and Giver of Joy

Bringer of luck and of grace
We glory in your embrace
Hear our song and join us
It is you, Busy One
It is you that we praise
with this song.

New Give Away at Good reads

Hey folks,

I’m running another give away on Goodreads. Head on over and friend me there, and put in for this free book. It’s free. Free is awesome. lol. (I don’t choose the winner. For those wondering, when the give away is over, goodreads chooses the winner by some technological miracle and notifies me, after which i send out the book). This time I’m offering my newest devotional ‘Honoring the Mothers.” You can also pick up a copy (not for free 😉 ) here

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Honoring the Mothers by Galina Krasskova

Honoring the Mothers

by Galina Krasskova

Giveaway ends January 18, 2017.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

 

Starting 2017 Off Right. :)

Happy New Year, folks. I’ve finally flopped down on my sofa after doing my New Year’s Eve ritual — ancestors, Asynjur, then the Roman Deities that I typically honor on this night, so three rituals in all plus setting out offerings to all the vaettir– and I very much hope that 2017 brings health, joy, and wealth to us all. Let it be a year of happiness and success. I pray that the good, immortal Gods block misfortune and malintent from entering our homes and our lives this year. May They bless us with all good things throughout the year, even in the midst of our challenges.

I want to start this year with something creative, fun, and that emphasizes the love and devotion we have for our Gods. As I was making offerings tonight to Pietas and Pudicitia, I kept thinking that if i could pick a keyword to govern my 2017, I’d choose devotion a thousand times over.

Anyway, each month I want to run a mini-Agon. I’ll choose a God or Goddess and offer a ‘prize,’ inviting you, my readers to submit prayers, poems, or art. On the last day of the month, I’ll choose a winner via divination. Everyone who submits may have a prayer card (just let me know which one you want when you submit), and the winner will get a card plus a small gift. I’ll alternate between Greco-Roman Deities and Norse-Germanic Deities since that’s the nexus at which I work.

January’s Deity of choice for me is Hermes. 🙂 He’s awesome and I think it fitting to start the year with a Hermes agon. So those of you who are interested, submit your art (photos of), prayers/poems to krasskova at gmail.com. Make sure to put “Hermes Agon January 2017” in the subject header and to let me know what card you want. The winner will get a card and a signed copy of my Hermes novena book, plus a small surprise gift.

Happy 2017.

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