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Hellenismos

From Academic Kids

Hellenismos (HellÍnismos), corresponding to the English word Hellenism, meant (in ancient Greek) the imitation of the Greeks. Today, this word is used in modern Greek to refer to the totality of the Greek people and culture.

Outside Greece, it is used by some to refer to the traditional, polytheistic religion of ancient Greece, reconstructed in and adapted to the modern world. This is also called Hellenic Polytheism, Hellenic Reconstructionist Paganism, Classical Paganism, Olympianism or simply Hellenism (Classical). Those who practice this religion are variously known as Hellenic polytheists, Hellenic pagans, Hellenic reconstructionists, Hellenists, or Hellenes. See Greek religion.

Hellenic polytheists worship the ancient Greek Gods—the Olympians, nature divinities, underworld deities—and heroes. Ancestors are honoured, both physical and spiritual. It is primarily a devotional or votive religion, based on the exchange of gifts (offerings) for the gods' blessings. Hellenismos has an ethical system based on the principles of reciprocity, hospitality, and moderation.

Today, worship of the ancient Greek Gods is common amongst neopagan religions such as Wicca, as well as in dedicated hellenistic circles.

There is no central 'ecclesia" (church) or hierarchal clergy, worshippers act in a personal manner by personally dedicating themselves to a favorite God, or a number of Gods, reflecting their personal spirituality.

Beliefs

Hellenismos isn't a book-based religion; there is no single text believed by worshippers to be the word of the Gods. Instead, theological beliefs and practices are based on multiple sources:

  1. Works of Homer, Hesiod, and others.
  2. Individual experience and inspiration.
  3. Scholarly research.

The main value of Hellenism is eusebeia, often translated as piety. This implies a commitment to the worship of the Hellenic Gods and action to back this up. Other core values are hospitality, self-control and moderation.

External Links

  • Elaion (http://www.elaion.org) - Traditionalist Hellenismos
  • Hellenion (http://www.hellenion.org)- a US-based religious organization ("church") dedicated to the revival and practice of Hellenic polytheism.
  • Sannion's Sanctuary (http://www.winterscapes.com/sannion/index.htm) - A set of articles and other writings from a worshipper.
  • Supreme Council of the Followers Of Hellenic Religion, The (YSEE) (http://www.ysee.gr) - The Greek Organization for the restoration of the Hellenic Religion - member of the World Congress of Ethnic Religions (WCER).
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