Saturday, January 11, 2014

The "lost" daughter that was "found" by Brianna Crampton

Dear Reader,

It seems I have been lost....not literally, but metaphorically! Lost like Persephone from her mother, Demeter. How many of you are familiar with that myth? I love this story for many reasons. I find it so enduring, especially since it represents an allegory for the different seasons of life. Back to being lost....I have been creating a mosaic for my mythology class, and guess what I selected as my subject? You are correct, Demeter! I have been "lost" in creating my mosaic. This myth focuses on the love between a mother and a daughter, and the fact that  once Persephone is taken from her mother, by Hades, Demeter is no longer able to function. She refuses to allow anything to grow, and consequently the Greeks begin to perish.

 As soon as Persephone is returned to her mother, life returns to the earth; unfortunately, while Persephone was in Hades, she was offered three pomegranate seeds, which she ate. If one eats the food of the dead then they are required to stay in the underworld. We are now faced with a serious dilemma. Persephone has eaten the food of the dead, which means she is confined to Hades; yet, what about mortals? If Demeter is without her daughter then she will refuse to let anything grow; consequently, life will cease to exist. Zeus finally settles the problem. He states that Persephone will remain in Hades for three months out of the year since she ate three pomegranate seeds, the other months she will remain with her mother. This, of course, is how the Greeks explained the seasons. When Persephone is in the underworld, nothing grows, as Demeter mourns for her daughter......WINTER!  When plants begins to rise to the surface, Demeter is anticipating the return of her daughter, and life begins to return to the earth,,,,, SPRING! When plants are in full bloom and the earth laughs in flowers it is SUMMER! Finally, when the leaves begins to fall to the earth, and the flowers wilt, Demeter grows sad, as she knows that her daughter will soon leave her for the underworld.....FALL!

The Greeks were unable to explain the world around them, so they created gods that controlled every aspect of the known world; this helped them live a less frightening existence.  It also proves how incredibly creative the ancient Greeks actually were.

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