Aphrodite, Pan and Eros in a playful game of love. Photograph: Why Athens | Odysseys National Archaeological Museum
Eros or love was frequently glorified by gods, poets and artists from antiquity to the present day.
This group sculpture of Aphrodite, Pan and Eros depicts a naked Aphrodite possibly in a bath, threatening Pan with her sandal. The winged Eros appears as the mediator of this love game which has elements of attraction, grace and beauty.
" loosens the limbs and weakens the mind"
Eros was the Greek god of love, or more precisely, passionate and physical desire. Without warning he selects his targets and forcefully strikes at their hearts, bringing confusion and irrepressible feelings or in the words of Hesiod he ‘’ loosens the limbs and weakens the mind ". Eros himself is a carefree and beautiful youth, crowned with flowers, especially of roses which were closely associated with the god
Eros: Eros, THE PASSIONATE LOVE was named after the Greek god of fertility,
and represented the idea of sexual passion and desire.
But the Greeks didn’t always think of it as something positive, as we tend to today.
In fact, eros was viewed as a dangerous, fiery and irrational form of love that could take hold of you and possess you — an attitude shared by many later spiritual thinkers, such as the Christian writer C.S. Lewis.
Representing today's "maddly"in Love
Eros involved a loss of control that frightened the Greeks. Ironically, Losing control is precisely what many people seek in relationships.
Cupid with his white wings, golden arrows and playful mood is a typical symbol of St. Valentine’s day, which straightly derives from the Roman god of desire and affection Cupid and his ancient Greek counterpart Eros.
the timing on calendars
Although there is no evidence linking Saint Valentine’s Day to the rites of the ancient Roman or ancient Greek cults, popular modern sources claim links to the Roman Lupercalia celebration observed around February 13–15, a rite connected to fertility.
Lupercalia was a festival local to the city of Rome. The more general Festival of Juno Februa, meaning Juno the purifier or the chaste Juno, was celebrated on February 13–14.
Pope Gelasius I (492–496) abolished Lupercalia. Juno is the ancient Roman name for goddess Hera, the spouse of ancient Greek father of the gods Zeus.
In the ancient Athenian calendar the period between mid-January and mid-February was the month of Gamelion, dedicated to the sacred marriage of the couple.
An Eros playing ephisdremos (piggy-back) with a woman, drives her in love towards her suitor. The man is accompanied by a seated Aphrodite, holding a dove in her hand.
The ancient Greeks were too
sophisticated in the way they talked about love, recognizing four different varieties.
They found diverse kinds of love in relationships with a wide range of people—friends, family, spouses, strangers, and even themselves.
The message from the Greeks is to nurture the varieties of love and tap into its many sources and indulge by all senses. By and Body and Soul...
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