The Secret Texts of Hellenic Polytheism: A Practical Guide to the Restored Pagan Religion of George Gemistos Plethon

The Secret Texts of Hellenic Polytheism: A Practical Guide to the Restored Pagan Religion of George Gemistos Plethon

by John Opsopaus PhD
The Secret Texts of Hellenic Polytheism: A Practical Guide to the Restored Pagan Religion of George Gemistos Plethon

The Secret Texts of Hellenic Polytheism: A Practical Guide to the Restored Pagan Religion of George Gemistos Plethon

by John Opsopaus PhD

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Overview

A Complete Translation of the Surviving Contents of Plethon's Renaissance-Era Book of Laws

George Gemistos (c. 1355–1452), who called himself "Plethon," helped trigger the Renaissance by reawakening an interest in Platonism, but his secret book on its Neopagan theology was burned after his death. Only sixteen chapters of Plethon's Book of Laws escaped the flames and, for the first time ever, they have been translated into English in their entirety.

Through translations and commentary by John Opsopaus, PhD, you can immerse yourself in Plethon's complete system of theology and religious practice focused on the Hellenic pantheon and deeply rooted in ancient Greek Paganism. This impressive guide features rituals, prayers, invocations, and hymns for daily and holiday use along with Plethon's complete sacred calendar. Featuring instructions from the Book of Laws on conducting ceremonies, rites, and more, The Secret Texts of Hellenic Polytheism enhances your spiritual practice and understanding of Neoplatonic philosophy.


Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780738770932
Publisher: Llewellyn Worldwide, LTD.
Publication date: 05/08/2022
Pages: 408
Sales rank: 718,245
Product dimensions: 7.40(w) x 9.20(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

John Opsopaus, PhD, (Tennessee) has practiced magic since the 1960s and his writing has been published in various magical and Neopagan magazines. He frequently presents workshops on Hellenic magic, Neopaganism, Pythagorean theurgy, and spiritual practices. John is a retired university professor with more than forty-five years of experience reading ancient Greek and Latin. He is also the author of Oracles of Apollo.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments xiii

Introduction 1

Information about Spelling and Citations 5

Chapter I The Ancient Wisdom 7

The Six Lawgivers 8

The Seven Legendary Sages 11

The Seven Sages of Ancient Greece 15

The Eight Philosophers 16

The Magical Oracles 20

Chapter II Plethon and His Book of Laws 23

The Council of Union 25

Plethon 26

A Secret Pagan Order? 27

The Case of Juvenal 30

The Fate of the Book of Laws 31

Aftermath 32

The Book of Laws and Its Remains 34

Prayer to the Gods of Learning 36

Chapter III The Gods 37

Personification 38

The Orders of Reality 40

Zeus: The One Itself 43

Divine Gender 47

The Supercelestial Gods 48

Visible Beings 73

Chapter IV The Sacred Calendar 83

The Day 83

The Month 84

The Year 86

Practical Matters 87

Chapter V Rites and Rituals 89

Order of Service 89

Ordinary Worship Services 97

Holy Day Worship Services 99

Fasting 101

Monthly Holy Days 103

Annual Holy Days 106

Chapter VI Invocations 111

Morning Invocation of the Gods 111

Afternoon Invocations of the Gods 120

Evening Invocation of the Gods 130

Invocation of Zeus after the Fast 136

Chapter VII Abbreviated Invocations 143

Morning Invocation of the Gods 143

Afternoon Invocations of the Gods 144

Evening Invocation of the Gods 147

Invocation of Zeus after the Fast 148

Chapter VIII Hymns 151

Text of Hymns 152

Musical Accompaniment 166

Chapter IX How to Be Excellent 173

The Cardinal Virtues 174

The Specific Virtues 177

Becoming Excellent 179

Chapter X Reconstructed Doctrines 187

Fate 187

Prayer 191

Purification 195

Sacrifice 200

Powers of the Seven Planets 207

Daimons 217

Chapter XI Theurgy 227

Technique 229

Conclusions 235

Appendix A Plethon's Summary of the Doctrines of Zoroaster and Plato 237

Appendix B Plethon's Book of Laws 241

Table of Contents 243

Book I 249

Book II 265

Book III 271

Appendix C Plethon's Commentary on the Magical Oracles of the Magi of Zoroaster 349

Further Reading 363

Bibliography 365

Index 373

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