J - An Illustrated Glossary of Hellenic Polytheism

BEING A DICTIONARY OR BRIEF ENCYCLOPEDIA OF HELLENISMOS, THE ANCIENT PAGAN GREEK RELIG

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PLEASE NOTE:  Throughout the pages of this Glossary, you will find fascinating stories.  These narratives are known as mythology, the traditional stories of the Gods and Heroes.  While these tales are great mystical vehicles containing transcendent truth, they are symbolic and should not be taken literally; a literal reading will frequently yield an erroneous result.  The meaning of the myths is often concealed in code.  To understand them requires a key.  For instance, when a God kills someone, this usually means a transformation of the soul to a higher level.  Similarly, sexual union with a God is a transformation.

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ABBREVIATIONS:  A list of abbreviations used in the glossary can be found on this page: GLOSSARY HOME PAGE

 

Japetus (Iapetos)- father of Atlas. 

Jason -Ἰάσων] - the son of Alcimede (Polymede) and Aeson (Αἴσων), the Thessalonian king of Iolcus.   The name means "healer" -  (iasthai - "to heal").  Jason is a major hero of Hellenic mythology requiring an entire article:  Jason


Julian the Philosopher
 - Born 332 CE, died 364 CE.  Full Roman name:  
Flavius Claudius Julianus.   Son of the half-brother of Constantine I.  It is interesting that he in part grew up in Bithynia

Julian was the last emperor of Rome to practice the old, polytheistic religion (perhaps not; see the entry for Anthemius). He was raised in an Arian Christian family.  How he discovered the older religion is not certain, but it is likely that he learned from tutors and the reading of classical texts, some obtained from a Christian bishop.  He converted to the ancient religion in his twentieth year and concealed this conversion until he became the emperor.  

Julian appears to have been a neo-Platonist with a rather bookish concept of religion, with views not unlike Iamblichus and Plotinus, showing a familiarity with theurgy.  He grew the philosopher's beard, ruled as a philosopher-king, and instigated laws of tolerance (including tolerance to Christianity) while simultaneously attempting to revive the religion of his ancestors.  He was initiated into the Eleusinian Mysteries.

Julian was ascetic in outlook and this was reflected the way he managed government, which he trimmed considerably and attempted to rid of corruption and excessive bureaucracy.  He modeled himself after Marcus Aurelius.  

Julian restored temples to pagans but also repealed stipends and privileges given to Christian churches and bishops, arousing their anger.  After viewing the destroyed second temple at Jerusalem, Julian ordered it to be rebuilt, but died before it was accomplished.

Julian was generally very popular with the people.  In addition, he was greatly admired by his troops, for the emperor was a superior general, and it is most likely that his short life ended from a battle-wound.   Libanius (314-394 CE) writes that he was assassinated by one of his own soldiers, a Christian, but it is not known for certain.  

Julian is associated with the term HELLENISMOS, a word he used to distinguish the older religious/philosophical traditions from Christianity.  Because of his valiant endeavor to reestablish the ancient customs, this word is in wide use today in his honor, at least in part.  

Juno - Roman name for Hera. 

Jupiter (Iuppiter)- Roman name of Zeus.  The word consists of Iovis - Zeus or Jove + pater - father, hence "Father Zeus."  The Romans called Zeus Iuppiter Optimus Maximus "Jupiter Best Greatest," which is quite similar to the Greek Ypatos "Supreme."

Justice - See Dikaiosýni. Please visit this page: Virtue in Hellenismos.


ABBREVIATIONS:  A list of abbreviations used in the glossary can be found on this page: GLOSSARY HOME PAGE


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