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Re: Kabeiria Mysteries

Sep 23, 2004 05:04 AM
by Erica Letzerich

Dear friend,

You said:

...There where no Kabeiroi as it is called, in Samothrace...

First of all I have been studying the Greek mysteries for few years 
now, and my description has nothing to do with early twenty century 
as you mentioned. Which references you would like me to offer first? 
Blavatsky or Orpheus? Historical or Mythological?  

According with Orpheus the beginning of the Greek Mysteries and 
Rites was with the mysteries of Samothrace (Kabeiria Mysteries) and 
the Eleusian mysteries are derived from them. The Kaveiria Mysteries 
were dedicated to the Mystery of Human Birth, and the Eleusian 
Mysteries dedicated to the Mysteries of death. 

They were also practicing the Kabeiria mysteries in other areas of 
Greece, in Thessaloniki they used to have coins also in honor to the 
Samuthrace mysteries. Jason is accounted as the person that took 
the Kabeiria mysteries from Samothrace to Thebes and Trojan.

Also Pausanias refers to the Athenian Methapos, who had reorganized 
the Mysteries there, as having also established the celebration of 
the Mysteries of the Kabeiroi for the Thebans. Pausanias (4, 1, 7). 

The mysteries of Samuthrace interest me from long time now. In the 
island there is one of the highest mountains of Greece whose pick 
name is Selene (moon) in Greek. The island is famous for its healing 
waters and many nascents. The Temple of the Kabeiria mysteries is 
still there and it is called the temple of the Megalon Theon - Great 
Gods. Unfortunately such place today here in Greece is used for 
satanists performing obscure rites.

The word Kabeiria is probably from the arabian: 

Kebir: Great. 

Or Sanscrit: ÇAWIRA Strong.

Lets see what Blavatsky says about it:

The earliest Mysteries recorded in history are those of Samothrace. 

(The Object of Mysteries)

Samuthrache: An island famous for its Mysteries, perhaps the oldest 
ever established in our present race. The Samothracian Mysteries 
were renowned all over the world. (Theosophical Glossary)


Now let us see other quotes:

You say:

...There where no Kabeiroi as it is called, in Samothrace...

Grottoes of the Kabeiroi and Korybantian cliffs on the island of 
Samothrake.” –Dionysiaca 4.184

Diodorus Siculus 5.48.2

Zeus desired that the other of his two sons Iasion of Samothrake 
might also attain honour, and so he instructed him in the initiatory 
rites of the mysteries [of the Kabeiroi of Samothrake, which had 
existed on the island since ancient times but was at that time, so 
to speak, put in his hands; it is not lawful, however, for any but 
the initiated to hear about the mysteries. And Iasion is reputed to 
have been the first to initiate strangers into them and by this 
means to bring the initiatory rite to high esteem. After this 
Kadmos, the son of Agenor, came in the course of his quest for 
Europe [his sister abducted by Zeus] to the Samothrakians, and after 
participating in the initiation [into the mysteries of Samothrake] 
he married Harmonia, who was the sister of Iasion and not, as the 
Greeks recount in their mythologies, the daughter of Ares ...
Now the details of the initiatory rite [of the Mysteries] are 
guarded among the matters not to be divulged and are communicated to 
the initiates alone; but the fame has travelled wide of how these 
gods [the Kabeiroi] appear to mankind and bring unexpected aid to 
those initiates of their who call upon them in the midst of perils. 
The claim is also made that men who have taken part in the mysteries 
become both more pious and more just and better in every respect 
than they were before. And this is the reason, we are told, why the 
most famous both of the ancient heroes and of the demi-gods were 
eagerly desirous to taking part in the initiatory rite; and in fact 
Jason and the Dioskouroi, and Herakles and Orpheus as well, after 
their initiation attained success in all the campaigns they 
undertook, because these gods appeared to them. 

Herodotus 2.50.1

"The Athenians were then already counted as Greeks when the 
Pelasgians came to live in the land with them and thereby began to 
be considered as Greeks. Whoever has been initiated into the rites 
of the Kabeiroi, which the Samothrakians learned from the Pelasgians 
and now practice, understands what my meaning is. Samothrake was 
formerly inhabited by those Pelasgians who came to live among the 
Athenians, and it is from them that the Samothrakians take their 
rites. The Athenians, then, were the first Greeks to make 
ithyphallic images of Hermes, and they did this because the 
Pelasgians taught them. The Pelasgians told a certain sacred tale 
about this, which is set forth in the Samothracian mysteries.

Strabo Bk 7 Frag 47

Iasion and Dardanos, two brothers, used to live in Samothrake. But 
when Iasion was struck by a thunderbolt because of his sin against 
Demeter, Dardanos sailed away from Samothrake, went and took up his 
abode at the foot of Mount Ida, calling the city Dardania, and 
taught the Trojans the Samothrakian Mysteries.-

Argonautica 1.916f

They [the Argonauts] beached this ship at Samothrake … He [Orpheus] 
wished them, by holy initiation, to learn something of the secret 
rites, and so sail on with greater confidence across the formidable 
sea. Of the rites I say no more, pausing only to salute the isle 
itself and the Powers [the Kabeiroi] that dwell in it, to whom 
belong the mysteries of which we must not sing.

Diodorus Siculus 4.43.1

There came on a great storm and the chieftains [Argonauts] had given 
up hope of being saved, when Orpheus, they say, who was the only one 
on ship-board who had ever been initiated in the mysteries of the 
deities of Samothrake [the Kabeiroi, offered to these deities 
prayers for their salvation. And immediately the wind died down and 
two stars fell over the heads of the Dioskouroi, and the whole 
company was amazed at the marvel which had taken place and concluded 
that they had been rescued from their perils by an act of providence 
of the gods. For this reason, the story of this reversal of fortune 
for the Argonauts has been handed down to succeeding generations, 
and sailors when caught in storms always direct their prayers to the 
deities of Samothrake and attribute the appearance of the two stars 
to the epiphany of the Dioskouroi. 

Diodorus Siculus 4.48.6

The Argonauts] had already reached the middle of the Pontic Sea when 
the ran into a storm which put them in the greatest peril. But when 
Orpheus … offered up prayers to the deities of Samothrake [the 
Kabeiroi], the winds ceased and there appeared near the ship Glaukos 
the Sea-God, as he is called ... and he counselled them, 
accordingly, that so soon as they touched their lands they should 
pray their vows to the gods [the Kabeiroi] through the intervention 
of whom they had twice already been saved. 

Diodorus Siculus 4.49.8

The Argonauts, they say, set forth from the Troad and arrived at 
Samothrake, where they again paid their vows to the great gods [the 
Kabeiroi] and dedicated in the sacred precinct the bowls which are 
preserved there even to this day. 

Aelian On Animals 15.23

They say that the pilot-fish is sacred not only to Poseidon but is 
also beloved of the gods of Samothrake the Kabeiro. 

Valerius Flaccus 2.431

Electra’s island [Samothrake] grows larger [as the Argonauts sail 
towards the island], guarding the secret of the Thracian rites [of 
the Kabeiroi and other gods]; for here dwells the great and terrible 
god, and here are ordained penalties for an unguarded tongue. No 
storm sent by Jove [Zeus] ever dares to beat with its billows upon 
this land; of his own will the god makes fierce his waves, what time 
he would forbid faithless sailors to touch his shores. But Thyotes 
the priest meets the Minyae [Argonauts] and bids them welcome to the 
land and to the temples, revealing their Mysteries to his guests. 
Thus much, Samothrace, has the poet proclaimed thee to the nations 
and the light of day; there stay, and let us keep our reverence for 
holy mysteries. The Minyae, rejoicing in the new light of the sun 
and full of their heavenly visions, seat themselves upon the thwarts 
[and depart from the island. 

Erica Letzerich

--- In, "worlduni_news" 
<worlduni_news@y...> wrote:
> Reg."Kaviria mysteries held in the Greek Island Samothrace" 
> There where no Kabeiroi as it is called, in Samothrace. Also the 
> description you quote seems typical for an early twentieth century 
> interpretation when Eugenetics became a buzword and occultists  
> started claiming they knew of an 'ancient' and of course 
> very 'secret' Eugenic Occultism.Rudolf Steiner was one of them but 
> also Aleister Crowley started mentioning 'magical' operations to 
> create a ('moon') child.
> The derivation of the name from Semitic/kabir/, "lord", "mighty 
> was proposed by J.J. Scaliger in 1619. And at Lemnos there were 
> three Kabeiroi and three Kabeirid nymphs, and the Kabeiroi were 
> associated at an early date with the principal deity of the 
> Hephaistos. At Thebes, there were two Kabiroi , who were also 
> associated - but only in a casual, unsystematic way - with 
> and his circle, or with Hermes and Pan.
> They were Greek and it seems there where not many of them, 
> only a family group, who settled in the countryside west of 
> Although mentioned by Diodoros , the following passages by 
> Pausanias are generally accepted as the best available primary 
> source. I found a good translation in Anth. Palat. 6, 245),;
> When one has gone on for 25 stades from here [i.e. the deserted 
> western suburbs of Thebes], there is a grove of Demeter Kabeiria 
> Kore: those who have been initiated are permitted to enter. The 
> sanctuary of the Kabeiroi is about seven stades away from this 
> grove. With regard to who the Kabeiroi are, and the nature of the 
> rites performed for them and the Mother, I must be excused by men 
> good will if I keep silent. But nothing hinders me from revealing 
> least what the Thebans say was the origin of the rites. For once 
> upon a time, they say, there was a city in this place, and men 
> Kabeiraians, and Demeter came to know Prometheus, one of the 
> Kabeiraians, and Aitnaios son of Prometheus, and entrusted 
> some¬thing to them. It seemed to me impious to write down what 
> thing was, and what happened to it: sufficc@»it to say that the 
> cele¬bration of the mystery is a gift of Demeter to the 
> At the time of the expedition of the Epigonoi and the capture of 
> Thebes, the Kabeiraioi were uprooted by the Argives, and the 
> cele¬bration of the mystery lapsed for a time. Later on, they say, 
> Pelarge, daughter of Potneus, and her husband Isthmiades 
> the ritual, to begin with at the same place, but then transferred 
> to the so-called Alexiarous. But because Pelarge had performed 
> initiations outside the ancient boundaries, Telondes and those of 
> the clan of Kabeiritai who were left, returned to the Kabeiraia. 
> They were required, in accordance with an oracle from Dodona, to 
> establish various rites in honour of Pelarge, including the 
> sacrifice of a beast bearing another in its womb.
> The wrath which emanates from the Kabeiroi cannot be avoided by 
> as has been made clear on many occasions. For some laymen had the 
> temerity to perform the Theban rites in the same way at Naupaktos, 
> and punishment came upon them soon there¬after. And again, when 
> members of Xerxes' army who had been left in Boiotia with 
> slipped into the sanctuary, possibly in the hope of plunder, but 
> more, I think, through impiety, they were immediately driven mad 
> perished by throw¬ing themselves off cliffs and into the sea. And 
> when Alexander, victorious in battle, was setting fire to Thebes 
> itself and the whole of the Thebais, some men from Macedonia who 
> come into the sanctuary of the Kabeiroi, as being in enemy 
> territory, were struck by thunder and lightning and killed. This 
> how revered this sanc¬tuary has been from the very beginning.
> (Pansanias 9, 25, 5-10)
> Elsewhere, in writing about the Mysteries of Andania in Messenia, 
> Pausanias refers to the Athenian Methapos, who had reorganized the 
> Mysteries there, as having also established the celebration of the 
> Mysteries of the Kabeiroi for the Thebans (4, 1, 7).
> Pausanias wrote much of his work during the reign of Marcus 
> (AD 161-180). This was a time when renewed interest in the past 
> Hellas was at its highest point. Sanctuaries which had previously 
> fallen into disuse were open once again, and rituals and festivals 
> which had lapsed were being practised and celebrated anew. Many of 
> those which Pausanias describes had been revived fairly recently. 
> it was, too, with the Kabirion and its cult. It is hardly to be 
> expected, therefore, that there would have been consistency any 
> than there was continuity of activity. make this clear. (See M. B. 
> Cosmopoulos, ed., Greek Mysteries: The Archaeology And Ritual Of 
> Ancient Greek Mystery Cults, 2003, pp. 112-114).
> Called In ancient Greek its called --- In theos-
>, "Erica Letzerich" <eletzerich@y...> wrote:
> > In ancient Greece the Kaviria mysteries held in the Greek Island 
> > Samothrace, it was the most ancient mystery and it was dedicated 
> to 
> > the mystery of human birth. They believed that they could 
> > enlightened souls to reborn. So with special way of life the 
> > that were part of the misteries were preparing themselves to 
> > the possibility to be mothers of enlightened souls.
> > 
> > Olympia the mother of Great Alexander when she left Egypt and 
> > to Samothrace she was taking part of the Kaviria mysteries, 
> actually 
> > she meet Philip her husband there. But of course they were not 
> > making anything bizarre. This was part of an ancient and very 
> > mysterious rite they had in antiquity. After many years the 
> Kabiria 
> > mysteries were as many others corrupted and lost their original 
> > meaning taking different forms and different interpretations 
> through 
> > history.
> > 
> > Erica

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