Hades and Persephone

TRIGGER WARNING: I do talk about the subject of Rape and its etymology. I do not want to trigger anyone with my interpretation of the context. For the record Rape, in the context of today is A FUCKING TERRIBLE THING!!! I am not about it and I am trying to fight against the rape culture.

And now back to our regularly scheduled programming.

Lately I’ve been doing some research on the myths and stories surrounding the greek figures Hades and Persephone. Now, mind you this is the springboard for a panel I am working on at a convention coming up in about a month.

And OH MY FUCKING GOD!

SIDEBAR:

The Greek Mythos is literally inspiring me for more world building factors for my novel. Which is a good…and bad thing.

END SIDEBAR

Upon first researching the story I kept seeing the word ‘rape’ come up and I’m going “wait wait wait, Hades, come on buddy, that’s not fucking cool, you’re better than your fuckboy brother Zeus”, but of course I was looking at the word as society sees it today. Sexual violation. This is definitely a trigger not only for me but for SO many people out there that I know and even don’t know, which concerned me, because if I am going to be talking about this then I need to go deeper and even do more research to see if he actually did rape her in the context of today’s meaning of it.

What I found is actually more intriguing than I anticipated and for my own peace of mind I checked and rechecked the etymology of it before writing this. Thank you dictionary.com, wikipedia.com, and etymonline.com. I also found this little article which discusses it and gives some interesting insight:

http://powderroom.kinja.com/not-so-fun-with-etymology-rape-1581924332

(You don’t have to go here, I figured I might include it if you did.)

If we look at the word rape, its etymology, where it comes from, it originates from the Latin word rapere which, way back then, meant to snatch, grab, carry off, abduct, seize, you get the idea. It’s an archaic meaning that doesn’t quite translate to what we know the act of rape to be today. However, looking at the root and the origins of the word, it is easy to see how the word morphed into its current present day meaning.

So why is the meaning and etymology of the word rape important to the story of Persephone and Hades?

It is how you look at the word and define it. Are you going to look at the mythos and define it using the word rape in the context of today? Or are you going to look at it in the old archaic context of the word? Because depending on which way you look at their story, it will alter your perception.

Now, I know some of you are going to look at it from the standpoint of today’s meaning and that is perfectly fine. That is your translation of it and I will not fight you on it, as long as you have sufficient evidence and a plausible argument to back it up. If not I’ll bitch slap you with a dictionary.

Personally, I do not believe Hades forced Persephone to have sex with him. I do not believe he forcefully took her virginity or violated her sexually in the slightest. Because, and I cannot emphasize this enough:

He is not like his fuckboy brother Zeus.

Let me say this again.

HE IS NOT LIKE HIS FUCKBOY BROTHER ZEUS!

Have I drilled it into your head that Zeus is a fuckboy and basically has a constant boner all the time? Good. Because that is what he is. (Don’t believe that Disney shit they made in the movie).

Two, the myth never clearly states that he actually did force her to have sex with him. It is interpreted that he did. Also for all we know he might have kidnapped her, had her lived with him and treated her like an actual person instead of a little girl who needed to be protected from men (Demeter you need to work on that overprotectiveness).

And yes Persephone was distraught, I mean I would be too if the Ruler of the Underworld kidnapped me to make me his wife and forced me to live in the underworld with no plants, flowers, sun, and being separated from my mother. I mean come on! Also had she eaten or drank anything frot here she wouldn’t have been able to return to the surface. That was the catch with the underworld.

Well that just added another layer to her misery.

So poor Persephone is not only sacred and alone but she’s also hungry, starving even and that wasn’t because Hades had forced it upon her. It was of her own choosing. He wasn’t abusing her or treating her terribly, at least as far as I can tell, her time in the underworld, while her mom went batshit crazy (yeah Demeter I’m looking at you), Hades actually treated her like a person as opposed to a little girl who needed to be protected from man. I mean for fuck’s sake she did warm his stone cold heart when he saw her before he kidnapped her so it wouldn’t make sense at all for him to treat her terribly after he got her down there.

If you look at Persephone Writes a Letter to Her Mother by A.E. Stallings (which you can find here http://www.poetrynet.org/month/archive/stallings/letter.html ) it’s an interesting depiction and sliver of how Persephone’s time in the underworld was. The way she describes her husband is rather sweet and honest. In fact, I prefer her descriptions of Hades as opposed how the mortals of ancient Greece described him despite the fact that no one fucked with Hades (bad shit happens when you do, take a look at Sisyphus).

Reminder this is just my interpretation on this mythos even after I have found all the research!

But as we all know Demeter, goddammit Demeter, Demeter went fucking crazy. That’s putting it lightly. Don’t get me wrong she had every reason to, wouldn’t you lose your mind a bit after your child had been kidnapped and you couldn’t find them? I mean you’d do everything you could to find them and get them back.

Which she did. She asked Hecate who told her what she knew and to talk to Helios to get the full story then when she found out Hades had taken her daughter…

Well she basically stopped doing her job and nearly caused the world to end.

Talk about an over dramatic reaction. Again, Demeter, your daughter is a grown woman get over your separation issues and stop treating her like a little girl. SHE’S A FUCKING GROWN ASS WOMAN!!!

Can you tell I’m not a huge fan of most of the greek gods?

But at the same time again I can understand where she is coming from. She is an overprotective mother who doesn’t want her precious daughter defiled (which Hades may or may not have done, again up to interpretation of the word rape whether you have it in the old archaic context or the current context) or even kidnapped to go to god knows where (the underworld as she discovered).

Her reaction is justified. And of course she went to Zeus to fix it because oh lordy lord if she did not get her daughter back it would be an endless winter.

Be prepared ancient Greece, winter is coming. Demeter is pissed.

Eventually Zeus concedes, after seeing that the world is basically dying and sends Hermes to the underworld to fetch Persephone to be reunited with her mother.

Well. Hades did agree to return Persephone, and (depending on your interpretation) he either tricked her into eating Pomegranate seeds or she consented to eat them because she was starving. Who knows. Again up to interpretation.

For me, I take a more romantic approach of they actually got to know each other even though she refused to eat, and he treated her like an actual person as opposed to a child and she discovered that maybe being his wife might not be so bad after all and of her own volition ate the pomegranate seeds.

Oh no Persephone ate the seeds nooooo she’s doomed to remain in the underworld forever! Oh woe is the world woe is the world!

Well that is partially true. She did have to stay in the underworld, which pleased Hades and really pissed off Demeter.

Seriously Demeter. Calm. Your. Tits.

So again they go to Zeus who has known of this and basically is partially at fault for the whole debacle and he eventually made a decision which didn’t fully please both parties but it would suffice nonetheless.

For every seed that Persephone consumed, she would spend a month in the underworld with Hades. One seed equals one month. Some sources claim she ate four and spent a third of the year in the underworld. Other sources claim she ate six and spent half of the year down there. Me being me, I favor the six seeds because fall brings about the beginning of the cold months, the beginning of the plants dying, animals preparing for winter, etc.. So for me, I say she ate six and returns to her husband during the fall equinox. But that is just me.

So for spring and summer *insert musical number here from Spring Awakening* Persephone resides on the surface with her mother, and for fall and winter she returns to the underworld to reside as the Queen of the Underworld along side her husband.

Now. I am going to take the romantic aspect away and address the fucked up aspect of the relationship. You ready for this. I fucking hope you are.

The real fucked up part is Hades is her uncle.

Her. Uncle.

Yeah.

Via her father AND mother. Yeah her parents were brother and sister. Zeus is a fuck boy and will stick his dick in anything including blood relatives because apparently he can’t get enough sex. Too much of that little blue pill eh Zeus?

There is just so much incestuous fucked upness in Greek mythology that my brain might explode trying to explain it all.

Let’s face it… the Greek gods were just incestuous little fuckers.

Shit…this post went way deeper into a rabbit hole than I intended…thanks for taking this trip with me fam.

 

Reference Links:

http://www.poetrynet.org/month/archive/stallings/letter.html
http://powderroom.kinja.com/not-so-fun-with-etymology-rape-1581924332
http://www.theoi.com/Khthonios/Haides.html
http://www.theoi.com/Khthonios/HaidesPersephone1.html
http://www.theoi.com/Khthonios/Persephone.html
http://www.ancient.eu/persephone/
http://www.ancient.eu/Hades/
https://www.infoplease.com/language-arts/mythology/classical-mythology-hades-takes-wife-persephone

Also Wikipedia, Dictionary.com, and Etymonline.com

 

THINGS TO REMEMBER: This is all my interpretation of this story even supplemented with research and literary sources. What is stated here is mostly my opinion. Please. Do. Not. Lose. Your. Minds. You may agree or disagree with me. I’m totally cool with either. but then again it’s my fucking blog so I can write what I want.

 

~ The Brooding Dragon

 

 

An Open Letter To My Sister

First of all I’m sorry.

Sorry for the fact that sometimes I don’t think before I speak. I’m a passionate person and that gets in the way of the logical thought I want to express and it doesn’t seem like you care nor do you want to hear my side of the story.

I’m sorry that my selfishness gets in the way but the truth is I am a selfish person and my mental health is far more important to me than any person. That includes you.

I am sorry that my mere existence seems to put you off so much to where you take out everything on me when the tiniest little thing bothers you.

I’m sorry that I don’t stand up for myself when I firmly believe that your opinion is wrong especially when it promotes rape culture or misogyny. But it’s really hard to get in a fucking word edgewise when you lose your fucking mind about the fact that you may be wrong!

I’m sorry that I can’t take a joke, but one, I’m a squishy person and I’m sensitive. I can’t usually tell when someone is being serious or not, two, you always aLWAyS get pissed off when I react the way I do.

I’m sorry I don’t stand up for myself more. It’s really difficult when I have the fear ingrained into me that you might hit me for denying your opinion and expressing my own. It also make it harder when I hear your side, but don’t get to express mine because you refuse to listen.

I’m sorry that I suffer from anxiety, depression, ADHD, and slight OCD. I don’t know why I got picked to be one of those special snowflakes who suffer from at least four of those, but it really takes a lot out of me when I’m having a shitty day and my inner demons, and chemical imbalance work together to shoot me down and keep me there. I can’t just ‘get over it’ and ‘not worry about it’ because it isn’t as easy for me to let things go. It’s not as easy to just ignore it, or allow it to sit there. If you would like I will gladly show you MRIs and scans of individuals who suffer from what I do. I swear I’m not looking for sympathy. I just need understanding that my brain is different than yours.

I’m sorry that I see the world differently. My version of injustice is different than yours. Maybe that is because I’ve seen it more than you do, or maybe its because i’ve seen i in every history class I’ve taken.

I’m sorry that I’m not nearly as nurturing or as carefree as you want me to be. I don’t need to really explain myself here.

I’m sorry that you feel the need to invalidate my feelings because you’ve been through more in your life than I have. No. You’ve had a different experience.

I’m sorry I don’t think like you. No wait I’m not sorry for that. I’m not sorry that I don’t think the way you do.

I’m not sorry that I am mentally ill.

I’m not sorry for existing in your life.

I’m not sorry that I see the world differently.

I’m not sorry for anything.

You’re stuck with me and yeah right now it sucks that we live together. It sucks so much that we can’t have our own lives. But I hope you know how much I sacrifice for you. Mostly sleep, because clearly you forget that I am in the room right next to yours, and when you are up until wee hours of the morning with whomever you are with, with your dogs barking and making so much noise on nights where I actually have to be up early, it kind of takes a toll on me.

But I don’t complain to you because god forbid I complain to you. If I do of course you’ll say that your life is tougher because of reasons X, Y, and Z. That is invalidating to myself and that is not okay.

I don’t feel the need to judge you based on your choices of who you fuck, who you date, what you smoke, the list goes on and on. Yet you feel the need to judge me because my shirts are cut too low, or I’m more of a liberal thinking person than you are. Whatever. I don’t need to explain myself. Even when you shame me for what I wear.

I’m not sorry that my boobs clearly offend you.

And right now there is a list of thing that I am proud of you for but frankly I am too angry to express them right now. Maybe when I cool off and you take that pole out of your ass I’ll actually write them and give them to you. But right now I am too angry and too hurt, and too wounded to do that.

For now…leave me to my devices. And I’ll leave you to yours.

~ The Brooding Dragon

Birthday

So today I woke up and I smiled to myself because, it is my birthday today. Yet I don’t feel different. This isn’t normal as I haven’t felt much different as each year has passed as I age gracefully in this life. Today feels no different than any other day, save for the fact that it is indeed my birthday.

I turn 28 today.

Some people don’t actually believe me when I say this because of how I dress or how youthful I look or hell even how I act. I still feel like a teenager but there are things that I do and I go “Oh yeah I’m too old for that shit.”

When did I start feeling too old?

It isn’t because I am too old because I’m still a young twenty something woman, it’s because I haven’t taken care of myself and I am not in the best shape of my life right now. But I will get there.

But I am grateful. I am lucky. I’m not part of the 27 club. I’ve learned a lot in my 28 years. I’m still learning so much in them. But I am incredibly lucky to have made it this far, and I’m glad.

I cannot tell you how many times in these years (especially my teenage ones) where I felt like I was a ball of nothing, useless, unloved, all the angsty teenage crap that is mostly out of my system. And I’m glad I didn’t disappear, or kill myself or do so much harm to myself that I became a totally different person. I grew out of it, i over came it, and I learned. this isn’t to say I still get angsty once in a while, because I do, but I try not to let it get too out of control.

This year. This year 28 is going to be my year. I’m going to not be so much of a hermit, strengthen my relationships with dear friends, and even best friends, work on not being so awkward, stop trying to impress (unless I absolutely have to to land a role or a job), get a career going, do more in the theatre arts, make more art, try and get projects I’ve been sitting on out from under me and off the ground, etc.

There is too much to list and I’m going to take each day at a time.

Live more in the present even while I work towards the future, try and make this world a better place, and spread love, kindness, and being the change I want to see int he world.

This is the year guys.

This is the year where I will transform. It took me twenty eight years to get here. It’s gonna happen.

~ The Brooding Dragon

AZRF Weeks 7 and 8/ Things I’ve learned

The last two weekends were not so terrible and yet i don’t remember much about either of them. I think I got shot down by a child with a marshmallow catapult and another came to my aide to see if i was alright…but I actually don’t remember alot.

They were the final two weekends and they were bitter sweet.

But I learned alot.

I learned that a good night sleep does wonders for the human body. The last weekend was not kind to me and my body is still recovering from being drunk. That was not fun.

I learned that working the box office for a theatre company the night before faire is a bad idea.

I learned that its always fun to ask children how their day has been and watching their eyes light up when you give them something shiny.

I’ve also learned that “Hi I’m Syri, ask me anything” works better if I am dressed as a fancy pants courtesan. It was fun being a bandit. But I think if I got an upgrade I could play more with it.

I learned that I would use computer and tech slang to respond with when my brain farted and died.

I learned that you gotta push through even if your day is the worst.

I’ve learned that getting drunk and kissing everyone will give you a chipped tooth and probably cause you problems. And make you lose a good friend.

I learned that its okay to take some time to cry.

I’ve learned that a little help and a few kind words go a long way.

I learned that sometimes you need to bail on one thing to enjoy another.

I’ve learned that some days you feel lost but you’ll get through it.

I learned that it’s not okay to demonize someone because you are jealous, and its better to approach them and apologize if you feel like you’ve made them feel unwanted.

I’ve learned that not everything everyone says about someone is the entire story.

I learned that sometimes its better to let things go and not let it ruffle your feathers.

I’ve learned that I might have poly tendencies.

I learned that taking on too much can really lead you to a melt down at four thirty in the morning.

I’ve learned that no matter what happens I have an amazing tribe to vent to and to take care of me and me take care of them in return.

I’ve also learned I am an awkward octopus. Moreso than I realized and the the octopus god will approach whenever she feels like it.

This is just some of what I’ve learned. There is always more. I am growing as a human being. And trying not to take on too much.

~ The Brooding Dragon

Force of Nature

She was a force, one to be reckoned with, and not one to fuck around with. One moment she was quiet, contemplative, focused, and the next she’d be everywhere, laughing, shouting about something, and jumping up and down. Night an day is what she was, there was no dawn or dusk.

But that is not how it started. She started as gentle waves on the beach and grew to be crashing waters against cliffs. Waves I could handle and get lost in.

We met in Phoenix, during a business meeting between her group and mine. I was third wheel, so was she and we ended up sharing a room. Odd really since I thought we’d do two rooms, her with her best friend and best friends husband, me with mine and his wife. But it ended up as three rooms. She paid, not like she couldn’t afford it, but she paid nonetheless and told us it was “not a problem” and it was “her pleasure”.

A selfless act from a hurricane of a woman.

She and I shared a room.

The six of us ended up at dinner, a fancy restaurant up in the Hyatt, all of us dressed to the nines. I decided to tame the mane of hair I had just to attempt to look nice, but sometimes the hair does not want to be tamed.  She had just fluffed her freshly dried curls and was spritzing her face,  “so keep my makeup in place” she had explained, like she read my mind and plucked the question out of it.

I couldn’t help but grin as I escorted her to dinner.

I still remember the smell of her perfume.

Dinner, she was animated, telling story after story when prompted, complete with hand gestures and facial expressions. We were laughing until we couldn’t breathe and people passing by wondered what was wrong with the fancy dressed people howling with laughter in the corner.

She grew deep and passionate when she and her friend spoke about what they did and why they did it. My hand often found its way into hers and she never did protest.

We offered the girls a proposal but they declined, feeling they would lose their brand if they merged with ours. Of course while disappointed we understood, but they offered a compromise. Collaborations every once in a while. This was something we could agree to.

Our friends had retired to their rooms leaving just the two of us. Lucky me because I wanted to pick her brain.

“I’m not tired yet.” She told me, giving me a glance with her honey brown eyes.

“Where do you recommend we go?” I asked.

“If you are up for coffee and pancakes there is an Ihop.” She suggested.

We ended up at an Ihop twenty minutes later, and spent at least four hours sipping coffee, laughing, and chatting about our lives.

But she got deep, and when I noticed the melancholy look in her eyes I had to wonder, who tried to dull her shine, who tried killing her spark?

“What is it?” I asked.

“I’m overthinking,” She replied looking me in the eye, “I’ve been over thinking the entire night for the past five minutes wondering what you and your friend think of me and mine, what is going through your head right now, why are you still here listening to me babble on about myself.” It was sincere, raw, honest, and a part of me wondered why she had to ask.

I sat next to her, took her hands with mine, and looked her in the eye.

“You’re interesting.” I told her. “Far more interesting than any girl I’ve met and I’m not talking about what you could possibly do in bed considering we talked about the kinky side of sex.”

She snorted in laughter.

“I’m serious.” I told her reaching up to touch her cheek. I already saw the tears welling in her eyes. “You are a force of nature. That’s terrifying but you’re one of those forces that doesn’t need to be tamed. It’s mesmerizing to watch you and get lost in what your saying. Anyone who is scared of that is a moron.”

“You’re not scared?”

“I’m terrified.” I paused. “But I’m not running. Most people would run from the storm. I want to dive in it.”

That was when she kissed me.

And that is when I got lost in the storm.

 

 

I wanted to write something. It’s been a while.

~ The Brooding Dragon