Pagan Grace: Dionysos, Hermes, Mnemosyme

The gift of grace, coming to us as beauty, cannot be ordered or owned, only acknowledged and served. When events take on a mythical dimension and reverberate in the soul, then we feel grace.

The three images of divinity amplified in this book express the often unconscious pagan grace present in our daily lives. Dionysos brings joy to celebrations and protects the sexual potency of man. Ginette Paris looks again at soul-making through the body, at the Eleusinian Mysteries in light of the culture’s drug and alcohol problems, explores the God’s twin faces of liberator and tyrant, and revisions role-playing under Dionysos’s aegis.

Lively as mercury, subtle as word play, and as indispensable as commerce or conversation, Hermes’ grace is today called communication, involving the necessity of deceit and the seductiveness of rhetoric. His connections with the healing arts provide a sorely needed balance to contemporary medical practice.

Mnemosyne’s grace is the remembrance of things past, the details of recollected happiness. the author disentangles the different values of oral memory, literacy, and computer memory, all along allowing Memory’s daughters, the Muses, to influence her writing, her feeling, and her thought.

A lively book that continues the work of Pagan Meditations in revivifying individual, cultural, and social life by reawakening their archetypal roots.

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Review of Pagan Grace: Dionysos, Hermes, Mnemosyme

« Paris writes from an intensely personal perspective in bringing the ancient deities to life. She does not profess to be an authority on Greek mythology, but her gift is the sharing of the ways in which the gods and goddesses have touched her. At the same time, she finds a more general value in the personification of abstract concepts such as communication, reason, or passion, as well as clinical terms such as ego, defense mechanism, or complex.

« The metaphorical gods and goddesses are embraced under a notion of « pagan mentality »; they simultaneously express flaws and attributes, in stark comparison to the Judeo-Christian divinities of perfection and totality (p. 65). »

-Marybeth Viglione. The San Francisco Jung Institute Library Journal, 10(4), 1992, p. 65-74.