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THE THREE ZEUS - THE THREE ZEFS
ΟΙ ΤΡΕΙΣ ΔΙΕΣ

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The Three Zefs (Gr. οι Τρείς Δίες) 


The Three Zefs (Zeus; Gr. Ζεύς) are 
Ællinismόs (Hellenismos; Gr. Ἑλληνισμός), the ancient Greek religion. They are Ploutohn (Pluto or Hades; Gr. Πλούτων), Poseidóhn (Poseidon or Neptune; Gr. Ποσειδῶν), and Olympian Zefs (or Jupiter). These deities are all Gods of the Kronídai (Cronidae; Gr. Κρονίδαι) and they are brothers. They can be understood from the perspective of the Orphic Egg

Ploutohn is the center (the yolk)
Poseidóhn is the middle (the liquid, or white of the egg)
Olympian Zefs is the cortex (the shell or outer layer: Nous, mind). 

The soul is thought of as an egg, which is a microcosm of the Kozmic Egg or the Universe. Our earthly system is also a microcosm of the Kozmic Egg with the component parts being: 

Zefs of the Earth (Ploutohn or Zefs Khthónios [chthonius, which means terrestrial or earthy; Gr. χθόνιος])
Zefs of the Sea and the Middle Sky beneath the Moon (Poseidóhn)
Zefs of the Sky (Olympian Zefs)

This means that these Gods have dominion over everything that we experience. In the mythology, this is told with the story of the casting of lots:

"...but they themselves cast lots for the sovereignty, and to Zeus was allotted the dominion of the sky, to Poseidon the dominion of the sea, and to Pluto the dominion in Hades." [1]

Kallímakhos (Callimachus; Gr. Καλλίμαχος), the Alexandrian poet, refers to this same mythology, but he points out that it is not by mere chance that these deities hold the positions which they do:

"Fairly didst thou wax, O heavenly Zeus, and fairly wert thou nurtured, and swiftly thou didst grow to manhood, and speedily came the down upon thy cheek. But, while yet a child, thou didst devise all the deeds of perfect stature. Wherefore thy kindred, though an earlier generation, grudged not that thou shouldst have heaven for thine appointed habitation. The ancient poets spake not altogether truly. For they said that the lot assigned to the sons of Cronus their three several abodes. But who would draw lots for Olympus and for Hades – save a very fool? for equal chances should one cast lots; but these are the wide world apart. When I speak fiction, be it such fiction as persuades the listener’s ear! Thou wert made sovereign of the Gods not by casting of lots but by the deeds of thy hands, thy might and that strength which thou hast set beside thy throne." [2]

In the Orphic Rhapsodic Theogony, it is said that mighty Krónos (Cronus; Gr. Κρόνος) received an oracle which stated that one of his children would usurp him. To prevent this, he swallowed each child in turn as they were born to his wife Rhǽa (Rhea; Gr. Ῥέα). But when Zefs came forth, the divine child was rushed into hiding and Rhǽa deceived her husband by presenting him with a stone wrapped in swaddling cloth and declared it to be his newborn son. Krónos swallowed the stone and it caused all the children to be vomited up. And then the Orphic fragment says:

"First to emerge was Orcus (ed. Ploutohn), and in the lower region, the infernal realm, he took his seat. The second became the ruler of the waters; he they call Neptune (ed. Poseidón). The third survived by means of his mother Rhea, riding a goat to the sky." [3]
 

The Neoplatonic philosopher Próklos explains their dominions in this way:

"He (ed. Olympian Zefs) is also the summit of the three, has the same name with the fontal Jupiter (ed. fontal means fundamental source), is united to him, and is monadically called Jupiter. But the second is called dyadically, marine Jupiter, and Neptune (ed. Poseidóhn). And the third is triadically denominated, terrestrial (ed. χθόνιος) Jupiter, Pluto, and Hades. The first of these also preserves, fabricates, and vivifies (ed. animates) summits, but the second, things of a second rank, and the third those of a third order. Hence this last is said to have ravished Proserpine (ed. Pærsæphóni), that together with her he might animate the extremities of the universe." [4]


The Weapons of the Three Kings

The one-eyed Kýklopæs (Cyclopes; Gr. Κύκλωπες) constructed three magnificent gifts, one for each of the Three Kings [5] 

For Zefs they forged the Kærafnós (Gr. Κεραυνός), the awesome thunderbolt as well as lightning, symbolic of his tremendous power and dominion over the vast heavens, indeed, symbolic of his dominion over all the Kózmos (Cosmos; Gr. Κόσμος). With this mighty weapon, he can deify souls, raise great storms and even flood the whole world.

For Poseidóhn they crafted the Tríaina (Trident; Gr. Τρίαινα) by which he can split rocks, create earthquakes and springs of sea-water. It is said that with the Tríaina, Poseidóhn spontaneously created horses, symbolic of the vehicle of the soul.

And for Ploutohn they created the Áïdos kynǽin (Aïdos kuneēn; Gr. Ἄϊδος κυνέην), the dog-skin cap which renders the wearer invisible and symbolic of the power of the mighty God.


The story of the birth of the GodsOrphic Rhapsodic Theogony.
We know the various qualities and characteristics of the Gods based on metaphorical stories: Mythology
Dictionary of terms related to ancient Greek mythology: Glossary of Hellenic Mythology.
Introduction to the Thæí (the Gods): The Nature of the Gods.



NOTES:

[1] Apollódohros (Apollodorus; Gr. Ἀπολλόδωρος) Vivliothíki (Bibliotheke; Gr. Βιβλιοθήκη) I:2, trans. J.G. Frazer in Apollodorus: The Library 1, Loeb LCL 121, Harvard Univ. Press [Cambridge MA & London England] 1921; we are using the 1990 edition, where this quotation may be found on p. 11.

[2] Kallímakhos 
(Callimachus; Gr. Καλλίμαχος) Hymn to Zefs 54-66, trans. A.W. Mair and G.R. Mair, 1921 in Callimachus Hymns and Epigrams; We are using the 1989 Harvard Univ. Press edition [Cambridge MA and London England], Loeb LCL 129, where this quotation may be found on p. 43.

[3] Kern frag. 56b, Rufinus Recognit. 10.17-20.

[4] Extract from the Manuscript Scolia of 
Próklos On the Kratýlos of Plátohn, found in The Theology of Plato/Proclus, trans. Thomas Taylor, Prometheus Trust, Vol. VIII of The Thomas Taylor Series, on p. 683.

[5] Apollódoros (Gr. ἈπολλόδωροςΒιβλιοθήκη (The Library) Book I.2.1.




The logo to the left is the principal symbol of this website. It is called the CESS logo, i.e. the Children of the Earth and the Starry Sky. The Pætilía (Petelia; Gr. Πετηλία) and other golden tablets having this phrase are the inspiration for the symbol. The image represents this idea: Earth (divisible substance) and the Sky (continuous substance) are the two kozmogonic substances. The twelve stars represent the Natural Laws, the dominions of the Olympian Gods. In front of these symbols is the seven-stringed kithára (cithara; Gr. κιθάρα), the lyre of Apóllohn (Apollo; Gr. Ἀπόλλων). It (here) represents the bond between Gods and mortals and is representative that we are the children of Orphéfs (Orpheus; Gr. Ὀρφεύς).



PLEASE NOTE: Throughout the pages of this website, you will find fascinating stories about our Gods. These narratives are known as

 

, 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 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.


The story of the birth of the Gods: Orphic Rhapsodic Theogony.
We know the various qualities and characteristics of the Gods based on metaphorical stories: Mythology
Dictionary of terms related to ancient Greek mythology: Glossary of Hellenic Mythology.

SPELLING: HellenicGods.org uses the Reuchlinian method of pronouncing ancient Greek, the system preferred by scholars from Greece itself. An approach was developed to enable the student to easily approximate the Greek words. Consequently, the way we spell words is unique, as this method of transliteration is exclusive to this website. For more information, visit these three pages: 

Pronunciation of Ancient Greek           

 

Transliteration of Ancient Greek           

 

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