Monday, 2 May 2016
The Ways Of The Three
"The ways of Mithras could be mysterious, but the ways of Belisama - of the Three Who brooded over Ys - were those of the wind, lightning, the sea deeps, falling stars, death in the night." (Roma Mater, p. 237) -
- inhuman, unpredictable, uncontrollable, incomprehensible.
Frederick Engels differentiated four stages of religious development:
in nature polytheism, because natural forces are incomprehensible and uncontrollable, they are personified and placated;
in social polytheism, because social forces like warfare have acquired the apparent externality of natural forces, they also are personified and placated;
in monotheism, the personified external forces are unified;
atheism grows as external forces are to some extent understood and controlled and therefore no longer personified.
We no longer placate Lir but consult meteorologists.
The Three of Ys, in particular Lir, represent an early nature polytheism in which human qualities and virtues like wisdom and justice have not yet been projected onto the deities. (See here.)