Have You Been to Delphi?: Tales of the Ancient Oracle for Modern Minds

Overview

"This book of tales of the ancient Oracle at Delphi, freshly interpreted from ancient literature, restores a lost wisdom tradition. This tradition is conveyed not through philosophical or religious exposition but through story, ranging from the grandeur of myth to charming anecdotes and dark riddles. At the Delphic temple of Apollo, for nearly a thousand years, a priestess in trance listened to the urgent inquiries of questioners from all parts of the ancient world and responded on behalf of the god. From this sacred conversation there resulted
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Overview

"This book of tales of the ancient Oracle at Delphi, freshly interpreted from ancient literature, restores a lost wisdom tradition. This tradition is conveyed not through philosophical or religious exposition but through story, ranging from the grandeur of myth to charming anecdotes and dark riddles. At the Delphic temple of Apollo, for nearly a thousand years, a priestess in trance listened to the urgent inquiries of questioners from all parts of the ancient world and responded on behalf of the god. From this sacred conversation there resulted both a set of enduring values and a collection of tales that relate the encounter with the divine and its consequences in the lives of questioners. In addition to a generous selection of these wisdom tales, the book also contains chapters on the priestess and ancient concepts of trance mediumship; on the Delphic commandment, "Know thyself": and on the still-surviving Chief State Oracle of Tibet, which offers a living parallel to the ancient Delphic oracle."--BOOK JACKET.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Regarded by modern scholars as an important aspect of ancient Greek and Roman life is the Oracle of the Delphi and its many stories--both real and fictional. In Have You Been to Delphi?: Tales of the Ancient Oracle for Modern Minds, Roger Lipsey (An Art of Our Own: The Spiritual in 20th-Century Art; etc.) retells and reinterprets tales from ancient literature, such as those of Plutarch, Cicero, Socrates and Aeschylus, and examines their philosophical influence and importance to scholars today. Lipsey also includes, as an afterword, an intriguing conversation with Lobsang Lhalungpa, a Tibetan lama and scholar who lives in the U.S., on the parallels between the Delphic Oracle and the Chief State Oracle of Tibet. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Library Journal
Lipsey has written a curious book about one of the most important cultural phenomena of the ancient world: the oracle of Apollo at his temple in Delphi. Neither quite a history of the oracle nor quite a collection of the relevant texts, Lipsey's work is a personal and idiosyncratic retelling and interpretation of some of the texts that make extensive allusion to the oracle--some of them fictional, some mostly exemplary, few of them indicative of the nature of the oracle itself. Many of the narratives are worth reading, with the caution that they are often late in origin and self-consciously contructed; Lipsey's interpretations should be approached with care. For larger collections. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Booknews
This book contains a selection of tales of the ancient Oracle at Delphi, as well as chapters on the priestess and ancient concepts of trance mediumship, the commandment to "Know thyself," and on the Chief State Oracle of Tibet. Chapters center on themes like gentleness, Socrates, war, wisdom, and wrongdoing. Lipsey is an author with no university affiliation. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Permissions
Preface
A Word on the Endnotes
1 Introduction: A Bowl of Myths and Stories 1
2 A Code for Questioners 19
3 Challenging Men to Gentleness: Apollo 39
4 Unfolded Into Light Through a Woman: The Pythia 51
5 Socrates Impoverished and Enriched 73
6 Croesus, King of Lydia: A Tale from the Age of Belief 95
7 A Chapter of Tales 113
8 Tales Mostly of War 133
9 The Sybarites' Question: Tales of Wisdom and Wrongdoing 163
10 One Golden Celery Plant: A Delphic Audit 185
11 "Hasten, Teiresias, Believe!" 197
12 Know Thyself 229
Afterword 259
Notes 277
Bibliographic Overview 297
Index 299
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