BABALON IN ANCIENT GREECE

A dialogue on the association of
Babalon in the ancient Greek tradition
Taken from the E-mail List
Babalon-L

Brothers and Sisters, 93!

I have not been on this list for very long but I thought it time that I post a small message. A subject that has never really been cleared about our Lady is Her attribution in ancient Greece. Thus I pose this matter to you all :

Is there an association of Babalon in ancient Greece ? If so, then what one goddess can be more perfectly attributed to Babalon ?

This matter came to my attention about a year ago, when I was asked to give this attribution for Crowley's Star Ruby ritual as it is given in the Book of Lies. Crowley was able to give the Greek associations to all god-forms in this ritual except for Babalon. I've been studying the Greek Mysteries for about eight years now, and surely living in Greece is of great advantage. So I would
like to hear your suggestions before I give my own findings.

May the Great Mother smile upon all of you.

93, 93/93

Frator 999
E.Rigakis


"E. Rigakis"

Well I don't know about Greek Mythos, but in the Strega Mythos, a correlation that *immediately* comes to mind is Aradia, the daughter of Diana and Lucifer, the first Witch, and teacher of the art of poisoning. According to Charles G. Leland in his "Aradia: Gospel of the Witches (first published 107 years ago, in 1890) "Aradia is evidently enough Herodias, who
was regarded in the beginning as associated with Dianna as chief of the witches. This was not derived from the Herodias of the New Testament, but from an earlier replica of Lilith, bearing the same name. It is, in fact, an identification or twinning of the Aryan and Shemitic Queens of Heaven, or of the Night and of Sorcery, and it may be that this was known to the earliest myth-makers. So far back as the sixth centry the worship of herodias and Diana by witches was condemned by a Church Council at Ancyra. Pipernus and other writers have noted the evident identity of Herodias with Lilith. Isis preceded both. Diana is very vigorously even dramatically set forth as the
goddess of the god-forsaken and ungodly, of thieves, harlots and truthfully enough, of the "minions of the moon" as Falstaff would have fain had them called. It was recognised in ancient Rome that no human being can be so bad or vile as to have forfeited all right to divine protection of some kind or other, and Diana was this protectress." So there's two possibilities in Roman Mythos for you Frater--Aradia/Herodias, and her mother Diana, the sister/wife of Lucifer. Damn, I'm proud to be Strega!

Blessed Beast!

Walter Five


Greetings Evangelos!

I didn't know that you were 'net active, that is great. I was fortunate enough to hear your lecture on Threskia at the 10th Thelemic Symposium in Oxford, and thought it was excellent (any chance of getting an email transcript of your lecture btw? ;')
I can't recall the exact references but Crowley did address the issue, somewhat obliquely, in several places (probably the Book of Thoth). Crowley's take was that no single pagan goddess fully equated with her, but that she represented the synthesis and sublimation of all ancient goddess
cults. In various passages he likened her to Aphrodite and Artemis in the Greek pantheon.
However, I like Fra. Sirius 294's take on Babalon in the Greek tradition. He likens Babalon to Pandora (All-giver) and this very much makes sense in the light of Babalon being the female version of the Great God Pan. The symbol of Pandora's Jar of Afflictions recalls Babalon's Cup of Abominations.
J.W.Parsons in his own Babalon Workings made a deliberate and magickal link between Babalon and the gnostic myth of Sophia Pistis: Simon Magus made a similar link between the Great Whore and the Divine Sophia in the physical manifestation of Helena, the Whore of Tyre. I don't think there can be a truly *definitive* attribution in any Pantheon, because Babalon IS Babalon and not merely a codename for another ancient goddess - She does encompass them, but cannot be fully
encompassed *by* them. However, I would really appreciate it if you would share the fruits of your own research with us; I know that you do have many unique insights into the Greek Mystery tradition and that we could all benefit from your active presence on this list. It is good to have you on-board.

93 93/93

Fra. Ecce Belarion, 451 - "Konx om pax!"


Mr. Rigakis,

One of the first things to come to My mind is the gnostic goddess Barbelon. This was a secret name for the Sophia, the World-Soul, and is phonetically similar to Babalon. I would venture to guess it was also the intelligence behind "Thunder, Perfect Mind" in the Nag Hammadi texts,
which is an exquisite voice of Babalon exploring the spot where dualism gets resolved into unity, and beyond ...

BABALON 156 *** SHEDONA 435


Mr. Rigakis,

Diana is a very good possibility--if one remembers that Diana was not only the superchaste virgin huntress, but "Diana of the Ephesians", who statue is dominated by the multiple breasts of the goddess (if they are breasts, and not eggs or some other fertility symbol). There is also Gaia and Rhea, and those rather undefined divinities found at the beginning of Hesiod's Theogony.

Jeffrey Smith


93 Babalon/Shedona and all on this list,

While Pandora is, as Babalon/Shedona said and I believe, Babalon in the Greek religion, I also believe that Athena is the supreme Babalon, one could say. I came to this conclusion after much thought and through my devotion to Athena. Athena, has as her cup the heart of Man, the same heart which Athena overflows with the Divine Wine, the Blood of the Universe, the Biosis of Life.
Of course, Agapion, I am more than anxious to benefit from your own conclusions,and the conclusions of all Fratores and Frateires on this list.

93, 93/93
Frator Sirius


> [FWD: from Fr. Sirius (check that your return address matches your
> subscription)]
>
> At 08:53 19/02/1997 -0500, Babalon/Shedona wrote:

Actually it was me, Frater Belarion, who wrote the post. Until I get my own account there is bound to be confusion on this matter ;'( Please bear in mind that at the moment there are two voices issuing from this account at present.
Sure, one *could* say that Athena is 'the supreme Babalon', but then that risks confusing one's own personal gnosis and relationship with Our Lady with 'the Truth'. In Liber Astarte Crowley warns that one of the dangers of the working of bhaktiyoga is to become too partisan in favour of
ones own chosen godform: very wise in light of the historical particularisms associated with the worship of Yahweh, and associated abuses.Saying this though, I certainly agree that the Athenian aspects of Babalon are very important, and are very much unexplored. I would appreciate your thoughts on the connection between Babalon and Athena.

> I came to this conclusion after much thought and through my devotion to
> Athena.

AHA! I knew there had to have been some extended bhaktiyoga somewhere in your above statements <grin>. Yeah, I admit that my own bias is in the direction of Astarte or Aphrodite (or even Lalita Shakti) and therefore, naturally, it is towards this aspect of the Beloved that I tend to
connect most easily. I think the point is that there are many different ways of relating to Our Lady for it is true that 'Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law' and Our Lady opens her arms to all who approach her with a sincere, open and giving heart, irrespective of what particular path they have taken to her bedchamber.

> Athena, has as her cup the heart of Man, the same heart which Athena
> overflows with the Divine Wine, the Blood of the Universe, the Biosis of
Life.

This is interesting, I fear that my own appreciation of Athena is very poor. I would be interested to hear more about the fruits of your devotions and the link between the Athena and Our Lady. I admit that I very crude understanding of Athena in the Greek pantheon and I think that I could
personally benefit from your intimate acqaintance with her, if you would be willing to spend the time, energy and patience to discuss it on the AHA list.

> Of course, Agapion, I am more than anxious to benefit from your own
> conclusions,and the conclusions of all Fratores and Frateires on this list.

I would certainly second that motion ;')

Fra. Ecce Belarion, 451 - "Konx om pax!"


Frator Ecce Belarion, 93!

Be more than happy to send you the transcript, I have posted it a number of times on alt.magick, alt.pagan, and alt.religion.wicca. If there are other members of the list who wish a copy, please e-mail me. Did you know that Golden Dawn Publishing in Oxford has published a book that contains all the talks and workshops, including my own Bacchic Worshop ? You can order it
from Mandrake of Oxford at :
http://www.compulink.co.uk/~mandrake

>I can't recall the exact references but Crowley did address the issue,
>somewhat obliquely, in several places (probably the Book of Thoth).
>Crowley's take was that no single pagan goddess fully equated with her,
>but that she represented the synthesis and sublimation of all ancient
>goddess cults. In various passages he likened her to Aphrodite and
>Artemis in the Greek pantheon.
>However, I like Fra. Sirius 294's take on Babalon in the Greek tradition.
>He likens Babalon to Pandora (All-giver) and this very much makes sense in
>the light of Babalon being the female version of the Great God Pan. The
>symbol of Pandora's Jar of Afflictions recalls Babalon's Cup of
>Abominations.

Yes, about a year ago I told Frator Sirius over the phone [he lives in Athens and I in Larisa] my finding with Babalon as Pandora. Though he forgot to mention that, that specific use of Babalon in the specific ritual - The Star Ruby - leaves no other real choice than Pandora. And though she may
very well be the more perfect assumption of Babalon, it is only in the context of Babalon - the Whore. What Crowley was trying to point out was that Babalon was much more than just a whore as Aphrodite - who is well known for her innumerable lovers. She was also a Virgin as Artemis, and every kind of feminine principle in ancient myth. In 1988e.v. I performed a series of magickal experiments inwhich I daily invoked with the Supreme Ritual - The Invocation of Horus. Through these experiments I did invoke a feminine entity that called herself Asthioria and proclaimed herself an ancient Greek deity and the true equivalent of Babalon in ancient Greece. Since then I haven't been able to find her mentioned anywhere, but an analysis of her name showed her association with both Aphrodite and Artemis, along with Athena (as Fr. Sirius rightly mentions).

The Fact of the matter is that Babalon, in the context of Crowley's magickal child, is seen as a New deity, a deity of the New Aeon, as well as her lord the beast is and he is called To Mega Therion. These two "New Aeon Deities" can then be seen as the god and goddess of the pagan tradition. I personally found then to associate Babalon to Asthioria and consider her the Great Mother of the Gods as the primal concentration of all goddesses in one. There are still other associations of the Greek Babalon but unfortunately they are limited to the pale of the Threskian Order.

>I don't think there can be a truly *definitive* attribution in any Pantheon,
>because Babalon IS Babalon and not merely a codename for another ancient
>goddess - She does encompass them, but cannot be fully encompassed *by*
>them.

Exactly ! this is the only logical solution...

93 93/93

Frator 999


Greetings All,

Do What Thou Wilt Shall be the Whole of the Law

I have not justification for this, but intuitive gut feeling. But in ritual and workings Babalon has most identified with Demeter or Demeter/Persephone for me. I also see a Babalonic current in the face of the youthful Furies. This may arise out of my own bias in working with Our Lady and also focusing a great deal of energy into the Barly Goddesses and the Cthonic Goddesses.

Love is the Law, Love Under Will

Never Thirst,

Grant Potts, Ape of Thoth Productions


Fra. Ecce Belarion writes:

93 Greetings AHA'ers,

On Thu, 20 Feb 1997, E. Rigakis wrote:

> At 08:53 19/2/1997 -0500, Fra. 451 wrote:

> >However, I like Fra. Sirius 294's take on Babalon in the Greek tradition.
> >He likens Babalon to Pandora (All-giver) and this very much makes sense
in
> >the light of Babalon being the female version of the Great God Pan. The
> >symbol of Pandora's Jar of Afflictions recalls Babalon's Cup of
> >Abominations.
> >
> Yes, about a year ago I told Frator Sirius over the phone [he lives in
> Athens and I in Larisa] my finding with Babalon as Pandora. Though he
forgot
> to mention that, that specific use of Babalon in the specific ritual - The
> Star Ruby - leaves no other real choice than Pandora.

Why is that? And what work with the Star Ruby ritual demands that Babalon be identified with Pandora? Also as you mention Star Ruby, what is your analysis of Crowley's use of Greek in regards to accuracy of translation vs. numerological symbolism (I can find very little numerological significance personally)? I would welcome your thoughts on this.

> And though she may
> very well be the more perfect assumption of Babalon, it is only in the
> context of Babalon - the Whore.

It is interesting to note the parallel between the Myth of Prometheus and Pandora, and the Hebrew myth of Nachash and Chavvah (Eve) in Gan Eden. Some scholars including Robert Graves believe the parallels so signify the fact that the Greeks myth was derived from the Hebrew, however, I tend to suspect the 'diffusionist' assumptions behind such mythological analysis.

> What Crowley was trying to point out was
> that Babalon was much more than just a whore as Aphrodite - who is well
> known for her innumerable lovers. She was also a Virgin as Artemis, and
> every kind of feminine principle in ancient myth.

Well yes and no. Crowley seemed to be rather more motivated towards 'perfecting paganism' as he expressed it by 'eliminating the need for gods and goddesses' by which he meant deliberately fusing all ancient gods and goddesses into single syntheses of Gods without myths. Thus, Babalon and Chaos, were supposed to be neutral 'scientific' terms of archetypes of human atavisms or future potentialities. However, later in his thinking he seemed to changed his attitude somewhat, and he doesn't press the point any further.

> In 1988e.v. I performed a series of magickal experiments inwhich I daily
> invoked with the Supreme Ritual - The Invocation of Horus. Through these
> experiments I did invoke a feminine entity that called herself Asthioria
> and proclaimed herself an ancient Greek deity and the true equivalent of
> Babalon in ancient Greece.

How is that spelt in Greek, Alpha-Sigma-Theta-Iota-Omicron-Rho-Iota-Alpha, or is the 'O' an Omega? It looks like a weird compound of Astheneia (weakness) and a feminization of Ioros (Keeper).

> Sinec then I haven't been able to find her
> mentioned anywhere, but an analysis of her name showed her association
> with both Aphrodite and Artemis, along with Athena (as Fr. Sirius
> rightly mentions).

I would be interested in your analysis.

> The Fact of the matter is that Babalon, in the context of Crowley's magickal
> child, is seen as a New deity, a deity of the New Aeon, as well as her lord
> the beast is and he is called To Mega Therion. These two "New Aeon
Deities"
> can then be seen as the god and goddess of the pagan tradition.

She is a deity without a myth, and it is the experience of the Incarnation of Her Priestesses, the Scarlet Women of Thelema, which is the source and fountain of her Myth-to-come. So rather than looking for Babalon in the dusty tracks of time, we should perhaps look to our sisters, mothers, and lovers who are the true Daughters of Zion. Even as the Qabalists seek to know Shekinah in the oratory of the nuptual bed, Babalon is understood in the melting gaze of our Beloved on earth, the warm yeilding of her thighs, the soothing caress of her hand upon a burdened brow, these are the whispers of Babalon upon the rushing winds of Spirit.
To worship Babalon, love all things. Call any woman ugly or repulsive and you do injury to Our Lady, for there is no woman upon this earth who does not bear the office of 'Scarlet Woman', even if she may choose to deny the title and office. I look upon radiance of the Sun and I see Babalon. I look in a reflective pool and see the face of Babalon. I hear a haunted cry of despair in the streets below and I hear Her pangs of childbirth. She may be simultaneously everyone and everthing, and no-one and nothing - for that is the true mystery of *Her* birth: the Birth of Babalon.

> I personally found then to associate Babalon to Asthioria and consider her
> the Great Mother of the Gods as the primal concentration of all goddesses
in
> one. There are still other associations of the Greek Babalon but
> unfortunately they are limited to the pale of the Threskian Order.

That's a pity.

Love is the law, love under will.

Fra. Ecce Belarion, 451 - "Konx om pax!"


Fra. Ecce Belarion, 451

93 !

>> Babalon in the specific ritual - The
>> Star Ruby - leaves no other real choice than Pandora.

you wrote :

>Why is that? And what work with the Star Ruby ritual demands that
Babalon
>be identified with Pandora?

Because of the nature of the ritual, a very active energy incorporated, in comparison to the second half of the ritual, the Star Sapphire. The same term "Scarlet Woman" projects this "active energy" giving Her the image of a out-going woman, a woman who works with the extremes, seductive, aggressive, but above all Liberal. This image suits a Pentagram ritual, the Star Ruby, but not it's twin the Star Sapphire, where Babalon is the Queen. And so not Pandora but Persephone, the Horned Queen of the Underworld. You cannot properly analysis Ruby without Sapphire, one cannot be done without the other. - ying yang.

>Also as you mention Star Ruby, what is your
>analysis of Crowley's use of Greek in regards to accuracy of translation
>vs. numerological symbolism (I can find very little numerological
>significance personally)? I would welcome your thoughts on this.

This is a very serious subject and whose magnitude warrants it it's own Posting. First thing : there are certain things you can do in an numerical evaluation that you cannot do in the actual language. I have found Crowley's Greek numerical symbolism also next to useless. His use of the language
leaves much to be desired. Also his translation of certain Greek words is a little off the mark. Unfortunately, though Crowley excelled in many traditions, he did not so much with the Greek. I wouldn't want to hear him speak Greek. It is quite ironic that the Prophet of Thelema did not even
pronounce thelema correctly. But surely we are getting off the topic of this post with this......

>> And though she may
>> very well be the more perfect assumption of Babalon, it is only in the
>> context of Babalon - the Whore.
>
>It is interesting to note the parallel between the Myth of Prometheus and
>Pandora, and the Hebrew myth of Nachash and Chavvah (Eve) in Gan
Eden.
>Some scholars including Robert Graves believe the parallels so signify the
>fact that the Greeks myth was derived from the Hebrew, however, I tend to
>suspect the 'diffusionist' assumptions behind such mythological analysis.

Well, you're opening up a pretty big can of worms with this, but I'll give it a shot....Prometheus can be traced to 3,000 b.c.e. with the worship of the Kabiri of Samothrace and the northern islands of the Agean sea, northern Greece, and especially Thebes or Theba in central Greece. So I do not agree with Graves and many of the "old" scholars, I have found that it is the other way around, as the Hebrew was derived from the ancient Greek.

>How is that spelt in Greek, Alpha-Sigma-Theta-Iota-Omicron-Rho-Iota-
Alpha,
>or is the 'O' an Omega? It looks like a weird compound of Astheneia
>(weakness) and a feminization of Ioros (Keeper).

Asthioria with an Omicron and by composition the word is As-Thioria, as though to say a feminine Therion, Beast. She combines the characters of the triad - Aphrodite, Artemis and Athena. Her image is of a Warrior Princess and she came to be the "flip-side" of Babalon. Though, I have supposed her to belong to the group of New Aeon Deities [good topic for a post], as I believe
the Beast and Babalon are.

>To worship Babalon, love all things. Call any woman ugly or repulsive and
>you do injury to Our Lady, for there is no woman upon this earth who does
>not bear the office of 'Scarlet Woman', even if she may choose to deny the
>title and office. I look upon radiance of the Sun and I see Babalon. I
>look in a reflective pool and see the face of Babalon. I hear a haunted
>cry of despair in the streets below and I hear Her pangs of childbirth.
>She may be simultaneously everyone and everthing, and no-one and
nothing -
>for that is the true mystery of *Her* birth: the Birth of Babalon.

Very well said, I enjoyed that ....

I think what we must conclude with Babalon in all her guises, is one thing,
that She is Our Great Mother.

93, 93/93

Frator 999
E. Rigakis