Modern Greek Pagans
They don’t like the term Pagan, apparently, but this is an interesting (and kind of infuriating, in places) article on modern neopagan movements in Greece, from the BBC. It’s occasionally confused and confusing (they don’t pray to the gods, but they want to build temples to pray in . . . ). The reporter takes a fairly neutral tone; the “experts” don’t. Take, for example, Peter Jones, co-founder of Friends of the Classics, who blithely states that these people are “kooky” because “Values and virtues are entirely meaningless in ancient terms.”
This is one of the stupidest things I have ever read. If it came from someone who was ignorant of the classics, it might be forgivable, but this is someone who claims to be a “friend” of the classics. In this one statement, he has swept aside the entirety of ancient philosophy, most of it concerned with how to live a good life by developing ἀρετή, meaning “excellence” or “virtue.” I cannot fathom what sort of hideous stupidity would cause one to say that “values and virtues are entirely meaningless in ancient terms.” I cannot even imagine a context in which that might not be an asinine thing to say. The only thing I can imagine is someone with an axe to grind and a willingness to lie and distort the classics of which he claims to be the friend. With friends like that, who needs enemies?
I should probably do a post on reconstructionist pagans and why I’m not one at some point, shouldn’t I?