ORPHIC FRAGMENT 109 - OTTO KERN

ORPHIC FRAGMENT 109 - OTTO KERN

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For links to many more fragments: The Orphic Fragments of Otto Kern.

SUMMARY: This set of fragments discusses the earlier generations of Gods. The first two of the generation of Ouranós and Yaia (Γαῖα, Γῆ). The third how Phánîs (Φάνης) makes all things visible with his light. The fourth fragment discusses the functions of primordial deities such as Ôkæanós (Ὠκεανός) and Tîthýs (Τηθύς), but also the functions of the Kings and their consorts. The fifth fragment syncretizes similar Egyptian mythology of generation.

109. (89) σχόλιον Ἑρμείου επὶ Φαίδρου Πλάτωνος 247 d (154, 23 Couvr.):

πρὸς δὴ τοῦτο εἶπεν ὅτι γεννήματά ἐστι ταῦτα τῆς Νυκτὸς μένοντα ἐν αὐτῆι, ἔστι δὲ καὶ Οὐρανὸς ὑπερουράνιος, καὶ ταῦτα πάντα μένει ἐν τῆι Νυκτί·

ἣ δὲ πάλιν Γαῖάν τε καὶ Οὐρανὸν εὐρὺν ἔτικτε·

δεῖξέν τ’ ἐξ ἀφανῶν φανεροὺς οἵ τ’ εἰσὶ γενέθλην.

“He said in respect of this, what remains is itself these children of Nyx, and Ouranós is above in the heavens, and all this abiding in Nyx:

‘In turn, she (Νύξ) gave birth to Yaia (Γαῖα) and vast Ouranós;

having made manifest the visible things from those unseen; and these are that generation.’ ”

(trans. by the author)

Idem in σχόλιον Ἑρμείου επὶ Φαίδρου Πλάτωνος 247 c (148, 17 Couvr.):

ἢ σφόδρα παρηκολουθηκὼς ὁ Πλάτων τοῖς ὑπὸ τῶν θεολόγων εἰρημένοις, κατ’ ἐκείνους καὶ αὐτὸς διατίθησι τὸν λόγον. μετὰ γὰρ τὴν τῶν Νυκτῶν τάξιν τρεῖς εἰσι τάξεις <τῶν add. M> θεῶν, Οὐρανοῦ, Κυκλώπων, Ἑκατογχείρων, ὧν αὐτὸς (Ast] αὐτῆς codd.) ἀποφάσκει τὰ οἰκεῖα τούτων ὀνόματα. ἐπειδὴ γὰρ τῶν ἔνδον ἐν αὐτῶι (ταὐτῶι M) μεινάντων τῶι Φάνητι πρῶτος (πρώτως M) φανερῶς (an φανερός? Couvr.) ὁ Οὐρανὸς ἐξ αὐτοῦ (ἐξ Φάνητος Gesn.) γέγονεν – ἔξω γὰρ προῆλθον πρῶτοι ἀπ’ αὐτοῦ Οὐρανὸς καὶ Γῆ, δεῖξέν (δεῖξαι codd. ut supra MA) --- γενέθλην καὶ πρῶτος καταλάμπεται ὁ Οὐρανὸς ὑπὸ τοῦ θείου φωτὸς τοῦ Φάνητος·

“In truth, Plátôn is closely following the proclamations of the theologians, for through them he himself devises the story. For along with the Nights, threes are the arrangement of the Gods, of Ouranós, the Kýklôpæs (Κύκλωπες), the Hundred-Handers (Ἑκατόγχειρες), of them he himself speaks out the familial names of these Gods. For after them in the house itself, Ouranós stood visible with Phánîs (), first to have been born from himself for these first, Ouranós and Yi (Γῆ), advanced out from himself, this has been made known – and (he who was) first shining on this race, Ouranós, (born) from the divine light of Phánîs.”

(trans. by the author)

Aliter Proclus his versibus utitur in σχόλιον Πρόκλου επὶ Τιμαίου Πλάτωνος 30 c. d (I 430, 11 Diehl):

ὡς δὲ τῶν ὁρατῶν πάντων ὁ κόσμος οὗτός ἐστι περιεκτικός, οὕτω τῶν νοητῶν ἐκεῖνος. ἄλλος δὲ ὁ τρόπος τῆς περιοχῆς, ὥσπερ εἴπομεν, καθ’ ἑκάτερον, ἀλλ’ ὅμως καὶ αὐτὸ τὸ ὁρατὸν τούτοις κατ’ ἀναλογίαν ὑπάρχει τὴν πρὸς ἐκεῖνα· καὶ γὰρ ἐκείνοις ἄνωθεν ὁ Φάνης ἐπιλάμπων τὸ νοητὸν φῶς πάντας ὁρατοὺς ποιεῖ καὶ δείκνυσιν ἐξ ἀφανῶν φανερούς, ὥσπερ καὶ ἐνταῦθα διὰ τοῦ φωτὸς τὰ χρώματα πάντα γεννώμενα τοῖς σώμασι παρέχεται τὸ ὁρατοῖς εἶναι.

“If however, as this world comprehends in itself all visible natures, so its paradigm comprehends all intelligibles, and the mode of comprehension, as we have said, is different in each, yet at the same time the visible in the former is analogous to that of the latter. For Phanes supernally illuminating intelligibles with intelligible light, causes all of them to be visible, and exhibits all things [in the intelligible] generated from invisible causes; and the world imparts visibility to bodies through the light of the stars.” (trans. Thomas Taylor, 1820)

et in σχόλιον Πρόκλου επὶ Τιμαίου Πλάτωνος 41 a (III 192, 17 Diehl):

ὁ μὲν γὰρ Οὐρανὸς περατοῖ πᾶσαν τὴν γένεσιν ἡ δὲ Γῆ δυναμοῖ, κινεῖ δὲ ὁ Ὠκεανός, ἑδράζει δὲ ἡ Τηθὺς ἕκαστον ἐπὶ τῆς ἰδίας κινήσεως, τῆς νοερᾶς τὰ νοερά, τῆς ψυχικῆς τὰ μέσα, τῆς φυσικῆς τὰ σωματικά, τοῦ Ὠκεανοῦ πάντα κινοῦντος ἀθρόως· διαιρεῖ δὲ νοερῶς μόνον ὁ Κρόνος, ζωιοποιεῖ δὲ ἡ Ῥέα, λόγοις δὲ σπερματικοῖς ὁ Φόρκυς διακοσμεῖ, φανερὰ δὲ ἐξ ἀφανῶν ὁ Ζεὺς ἀποτελεῖ, ἐξελίττει δὲ ἡ Ἥρα κατὰ παντοίας τῶν ἐμφανῶν μεταβολάς.

“For Heaven (Οὐρανὸς) terminates, Earth (Γῆ) corroborates, and Ocean (Ὠκεανός) moves all generation. But Tethys establishes every thing in its proper motion; intellectual essences in intellectual, middle essences in psychical, and such as are corporeal in physical, motion; Ocean at the same time collectively moving all things. Saturn (Κρόνος) alone divides intellectually, Rhea vivifies and Phorcys distributes spermatic productive principles; Jupiter (Ζεὺς) perfects things apparent from such as are unapparent; and Juno (Ἥρα) evolves according to the all-various mutations of visible natures.” (trans. Thomas Taylor, 1820)

Cf. etiam Περὶ τῶν Αἰγυπτίων μυστηρίων Ιαμβλίχου Χαλκιδέως VIII 3 (263, 6 Parth.):

ἐπὶ δὲ τούτοις τῶν ἐμφανῶν δημιουργίας ἄλλοι προεστήκασιν ἡγεμόνες. ὁ γὰρ δημιοργικὸς νοῦς καὶ τῆς ἀληθείας προστάτης καὶ σοφίας, ἐρχόμενος μὲν ἐπὶ γένεσιν, καὶ τὴν ἀφανῆ τῶν κεκρυμμένων λόγων δύναμιν εἰς φῶς ἄγων, Ἀμοῦν (ἁμοῦν ACD) κατὰ τὴν τῶν Αἰγυπτίων γλῶσσαν λέγεται, συντελῶν δὲ ἀψευδῶς ἕκαστα καὶ τεχνικῶς μετ' ἀληθείας Φθὰ (Ἕλληνες δὲ εἰς Ἥφαιστον μεταλαμβάνουσι τὸν Φθὰ τῷ μόνον προσβάλλοντες , ἀγαθῶν δὲ ποιητικὸς ὢν Ὄσιρις κέκληται, καὶ ἄλλας δί ἄλλας δυνάεις τε καὶ ἐνεργείας ἔχει.)

“Besides these, also, other leaders preside over the fabrication of visible natures. For the demiurgic intellect, who is the curator of truth and wisdom, descending into generation, and leading the power of occult reasons into light, is called in the Egyptian tongue Amon; but in consequence of perfecting all things with veracity and artificially, he is called Ptha. (The Greeks, however, assume Ptha for Vulcan, solely directing their attention to the artificial peculiarity of the God. So far, also, as he is effective of good he is called Osiris; and he has other appellations through other powers and energies.)” (trans. Thomas Taylor, 1821)

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.

Introduction to the Thæí (the Gods): The Nature of the Gods.

How do we know there are Gods? Experiencing Gods.

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, 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, κιθάρα), the the lyre of Apóllôn (Apollo, Ἀπόλλων). It (here) represents the bond between Gods and mortals and is representative that we are the children of Orphéfs (Orpheus, Ὀρφεύς).

PLEASE NOTE: Throughout the pages of this website, you will find fascinating stories about our Gods. 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 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.

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.

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