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View Full Version : The drink of the High Gods - who agrees?



Thurisaz
04-15-2006, 03:25 PM
Hey,

out of sheer curiosity - somehow I'm pretty sure that I'm not the only one in these forums who sees mead not only as some yummy stuff to drink, but as kind of sacred.

Well, if you haven't guessed it already from my sig et al - I'm one of those crazy Asatruar heathens, a believer of the pre-christian faith of the Vikings and Germanic tribes. Thus meadmaking is kind of a religious service to me (how's that compared to your average boring church service? 8) ). So... how many of you see things the same? Or could it be that I'm indeed the only one so far? ;D

lostnbronx
04-15-2006, 08:57 PM
Thurisaz,

Welcome to the boards!

No, you're not the only one by any means. We have our share of believers here. I'm a neo-pagan myself, and there have been other pagans and wiccans aplenty! Remember, too, mead was known throughout the entire world back in ancient days, and many religions then (and now, to a lesser extent) considered it sacred itself, or important in sacred rituals.

Great to have you here!

-David

Oskaar
04-15-2006, 09:45 PM
Howdy Thurisaz,

Don't forget that places like Illyria, Dalmacija and Greece had mead cultures and associated rituals and festivals in 1200 BCE and even older based on some accounts I've read. I don't know how historically accurate they are, but it's clear there was a mead culture there for some time. We also see nectar and ambrosia in the Illiad and The Odyssey, as well as being associated with early Dionysus rituals before the Greeks brought vines and wine into the Adriatic region.

The civilizations of Sumar, Mesopotamia, Egypt, Assyria, China, and I'm sure others all had mead in their storied histories as well. It's a worldwide thing, woo hoo.

See, even the old folks knew how great mead was!

cheers,

Oskaar

Thurisaz
04-16-2006, 12:29 AM
Oh well, I did know that mead was known almost everywhere, but somehow I didn't know yet that it had a sacred role in other cultures too. Of course, I didn't research every single ancient religion with all its rituals... ;)

Oskaar
04-16-2006, 12:50 AM
;D LOL Research is just a good excuse for more drinking! I just like to dress it up so it looks more official! LOL

Cheers,

Oskaar

Miriam
04-16-2006, 01:42 AM
Yes, just before opening this thread up, I was wondering what how many non-standard Judeo/Christian members this forum has. LostnBronx I know (waving hi), and one or two more. We haven't heard from ToolBoxDiver in a while, but I think he holds by Native American belief. I have sometimes wondered if BlackShadow, an Ethiopian who posted maybe once about Tej, belongs to the Ethiopian church.

Since mead seems to attract "different" sort of folks, I wondered, in an idle, sociological sort of way, what kind of mix of beliefs we have here.

Miriam

Dan McFeeley
04-16-2006, 05:10 AM
out of sheer curiosity - somehow I'm pretty sure that I'm not the only one in these forums who sees mead not only as some yummy stuff to drink, but as kind of sacred.

Hello Thurisaz -- cool avatar!

You're absolutely right, mead was made both for consumption in the home and for the community, and used in sacred rituals by many cultures, most especially those which are now categorized as "Pagan." A contemporary work listing sacred brews in modern Pagan life is "A Witches Brew: The Art of Making Magical Beverages," by Patricia Telesco (Llewelyn Publications, 1995).

One of the best academic studies on the use of mead in ancient Germanic ritual is Michael Enright's "Lady with a Mead Cup: Ritual, Prophecy and Lordship in the European Warband from La Tene to the Viking Age" (Four Courts Press, 1996). You might also enjoy looking at "The Mead Hall: Feasting in Anglo-Saxon England" (Stephen Pollington, Anglo-Saxon Books, 2003).

A great web site for Norse culture and history is the Viking Answer Lady. Take a look here for all kinds of good info on Viking drinking culture:

http://www.vikinganswerlady.com/drink.shtml

Oskaar is right about the prescence of sacred mead cults in Greece. There was a cult of "bee prophetesses" associated with Greece, either a cultural import or even something predating the Homeric gods. The name "Melissa" is Greek for either "bee nymph" or "bee prophetess." Take a look here:

http://www.absoluteastronomy.com/ref/melissa

http://www.freedownloadsoft.com/info/melissa.html

Don't know if these ancient bee nymphs were red haired . . . ;D ;D ;D

Thurisaz
04-16-2006, 07:32 AM
;D LOL Research is just a good excuse for more drinking!

Rats, he figured me out! ::)

Amen PROST! ;D

Thurisaz
04-16-2006, 07:33 AM
Since mead seems to attract "different" sort of folks, I wondered, in an idle, sociological sort of way, what kind of mix of beliefs we have here.


Let's make a list :D

Thurisaz
04-16-2006, 07:36 AM
Hello Thurisaz -- cool avatar!

Can you believe that it took me almost three years after joining the Asatruar until I finally got a copy of "The 13th warrior"? :o
However, once I had it, the next step was to make some good screenshots of Prince Boulway and to start using them in a number of forums as avatars... ;D



Don't know if these ancient bee nymphs were red haired . . . ;D ;D ;D


A pretty hairdo is nice for sure, but the spirit counts >:D

Oskaar
04-16-2006, 08:14 AM
Hey Thuriaz, Dan was ribbing me about my red head fixation. 13th Warrior rocked out loud, what a great flick to drink mead to.

Dan, there was a Melissa a long time ago, with red hair (actually two Melissas with red hair, one was just a friend from a land far away) it worked out for a while then it went south. LOL

Cheers,

Oskaar

sickpuppy
04-16-2006, 03:14 PM
My feeling is of Agnostic spiritualism —the view that there may or may not be a god (or gods), while maintaining a general personal belief in a spiritual aspect of reality, particularly without distinct religious basis, or adherence to any established doctrine or dogma.

Is there a God? I do not know. Is man immortal? I do not know. One thing I do know, and that is, that neither hope, nor fear, belief, nor denial, can change the fact. It is as it is, and it will be as it must be. We wait and hope.

If there is a God, he would drink Mead.

Dan

Maelduin
05-11-2006, 01:10 AM
My feeling is of Agnostic spiritualism —the view that there may or may not be a god (or gods), while maintaining a general personal belief in a spiritual aspect of reality, particularly without distinct religious basis, or adherence to any established doctrine or dogma.

Is there a God? I do not know. Is man immortal? I do not know. One thing I do know, and that is, that neither hope, nor fear, belief, nor denial, can change the fact. It is as it is, and it will be as it must be. We wait and hope.

If there is a God, he would drink Mead.

Dan


Umm, yeah, what he said. Exactly. To the letter. I like to study religions. I just dont subscribe to any of them as THE ONE TRUE WAY TO BELIEVE.

Michael

kash
05-11-2006, 03:47 PM
If you're looking for a raise of hands, I guess I'll admit to being "one of them". Think of it this way, the next time the popular religions decide to have a barbeque, we'll all know each other and perhaps can get adjacent stakes.

I don't know if I can give up any particulars, I guess to lump me in to some category, I'm an atheist, and depending on who's ringing the doorbell, I just might be Anti-theist.

Now, in a blatent attempt to abuse, amuse and insult just about everyone, Once you've seen one theism worshiping some big sky daddy, you've seen them all.

I'll now duck and cover expecting the fundimentalist's onslaught.

Thurisaz
05-14-2006, 06:16 AM
Now, in a blatent attempt to abuse, amuse and insult just about everyone, Once you've seen one theism worshiping some big sky daddy, you've seen them all.

I understand what you mean. Fortunately, although many people out there want to create that impression, not every religion is like any other. ;D

But I guess discussion/debate about religions wouldn't be at home here anyway, so let's keep it humorous or go somewhere else for it ;)

Oskaar
05-14-2006, 09:43 AM
I think it's a good idea to focus on mead. Religious discussions are best left for places other than Gotmead.com. We're here to make mead, and occaisionally get sidetracked, but mostly stick to mead.

So, let's move on.

Cheers,

Oskaar

NeadMead
05-30-2006, 08:59 PM
Thurisaz, welcome to Got Mead. I like you avatar. That was a cool movie. One of the few (if not only one) where the main character was NOT the hero.

However, on the subject at hand, my belief is that Jesus actually turned water into mead, not wine as we commonly think of it. I hope that does not offend other Christians, but I feel that is a possibilty given the populrity of mead compared to wine back then. Well, my limited research indicated that to me anyway.

webmaster
05-30-2006, 10:47 PM
I agree with Oskaar that religious discussions (unless they deal with mead in religion) are best held elsewhere, but I've no problem with folks saying their belief system (or not, as you will), as long as no one starts pushing theirs over any others.

Me, I'm a Buddhist. My personal philosophy (YMMV): Live and let live. Personal responsibility. The Divine resides in all of us, and we need only reach out to touch it.

I'm a simple wench.

Vicky - drinking tea, off mead for 2 weeks while I do the South Beach start-up

Muirghein Tarot
05-30-2006, 11:53 PM
10,000 years, maybe 100,000 years from this very second some where so far away the light of it's star has never reached us one of us will look down upon a blue green world where we have just lite the spark of life. We will smile with pride at what we have done.
Feeling eyes upon us we will turn and gaze upon the face of our creator, he'll smile at us with similar pride, hold out his hand and call us brother.

Till that day we live, we laugh,
we cry, we die, while all the while believing we are the only reason for life. We can't and won't see how alike all other life we are.
Raise a glass, enjoy
and with every breath you take love the ones in your life!
Love is the closest to heaven most of us will ever know.

a confirmed dreamer,
Tarot.

Miriam
05-31-2006, 04:15 AM
My apologies, folks, for having started a thread which went so far away from the point in hand: MEAD. The glue that holds GotMead together is Oskaar's simple creed:

Get Honey.
Make Mead.
Drink Mead.
Repeat.

...ad infinitum ;D

Miriam

webmaster
05-31-2006, 08:49 AM
No worries, Miriam. Its an interesting question.

The research I've done in the Bible shows that mead (or honey wine) is mentioned in a few places.

I think that a study of the area at the time of Jesus could give a pretty good insight into what beverages might have been at the Last Supper, or what might have been turned from water. Plus, some delving into Jewish traditions of alcohol at the time.

Miriam, do you have any good suggestions/ideas/research on the drinking of habits of turn-of-the-Millenium Jewish people?

Vicky

Johnnybladers
05-31-2006, 08:57 PM
Now I'm confused (no it doesn't take much), Miriam is taking the "blame" for opening this thread. The first post that I saw was Thurisaz. Am I missing part of the thread?
Jon

webmaster
05-31-2006, 09:06 PM
Nope, you didn't miss anything. It was Miriam that asked how many non-Xtian folks were here, and that was what she was talking about.

But, it was an interesting question, and no blame to be assessed (penetrating look at Miriam and a grin).

Vicky

Miriam
06-01-2006, 10:19 AM
(Patting down my hair, which stood on end at Vicky's penetrating look :o )

Vicky, I've been thinking about your question, and it seems to me that the source for research into the drinking habits of the ancients in Israel is the Talmud. Here is a comprehensive definition of the Talmud:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talmud

You will see that it is a vast work which requires a good grasp of Hebrew to study, even with the linear translations available. I doubt that even so dedicated and curious a scholar as Dan would have time to pursue the question throughout the pages of the Talmud.

But. My husband's good friend is a rabbi and a winemaker, and I will ask him to sit down with me once or twice, to go over the sources and and explain to me, in a way I can understand, what people were drinking back in 200 CE. I can assure you that people did drink wine then; mead I'm not so sure about. However, honey was known and appreciated, and where there's honey, mead has to follow...Anyway, I'll do my best to gather some information over the next couple of weeks, and when I have something presentable, I'll do a little article on the subject. Bli neder, meaning "not promising" - but I'm intrigued enough myself to put some energy into the project.

Miriam

webmaster
06-01-2006, 10:29 AM
LOL..

Fantastic! If you can find out enough to write an article, and you have the time, just shoot it over and I'll put it on the front page and in the history section....

Dmntd
06-01-2006, 03:00 PM
I'm a Shamanists, and have been in recovery from a Cathlic upbringing for 34 years.

The core philosophies of Shamanism,

Everything that is, is of the Spirit. Having the same source, everything is connected. When we harm the earth, the sky or any living thing, we harm Ourselves both physically and spiritually. The laws are simple. Love the Spirit, Love everything of the spirit, cause no harm.

I like to think... "My Dogma got run over by my Karma"

Dmntd

NeadMead
06-02-2006, 12:22 AM
My apologies, Got Mead Web Wench, if i got off topic. I thought that I was on topic for this thread. However, Mead is here and tastes great, and I agree with Thurisaz, it is the drink of the gods, and God himself, I believe enjoys a good mead now and then. ;D

webmaster
06-02-2006, 09:27 AM
No, you weren't off topic. You made an interesting observation, and it looks like at least one of us is going to delve into beverages in Jewish tradition/culture during the time that Jesus is said to have lived.

No worries.

Oh, and please call me Vicky. GotmeadWebwench is such a *mouthful*....LOL

Muirghein Tarot
06-02-2006, 01:02 PM
"GotmeadWebwench is such a *mouthful"

Really..? Ok now were off topic. Slaps mind back into it's gutter where it normally dwells.
LoL
Tarot

webmaster
06-02-2006, 01:16 PM
LOL....::sigh:: I keep forgetting that this place is full of gutter-dwellers.......

Vicky - glaring in an amused manner

Dmntd
06-02-2006, 02:09 PM
Being a gentleman... I'd have never said it.

Dmntd

JayH
06-03-2006, 11:20 AM
In the oldest known versions of the Wedding story, the word used is actually the word for "Strong Drink", it was later changed to "Wine" but you have to remember the cultural preferences of the people doing the changing hundreds of years later in a totally different part of the world. At the time of Jesus, by far the most common "Strong Drink" was beer. Grain was plentiful and therefore much cheaper to come by, and in addition we have records of Egypt exporting large quantities of beer to Judea during this period. In general the only ones during Jesus’ time that drank wine regularly were those that were either Roman, or closely aligned with the Romans.


Cheers
Jay

Dan McFeeley
06-03-2006, 02:27 PM
Don't mean to come across as argumentive, but I have to respectfully disagree with "strong drink" v/s "wine" in the story of the wedding at Cana. I still have my Greek New Testament resources from my days long ago as a ministerial student and took a browse to see what was there.

A really helpful text is the Greek New Testament put out by the United Bible Societies. It not only gives the reading of the text in koine Greek, it lists varient readings in the footnotes with the manuscript sources, allowing the reader to back check the main text. I took a look at the wedding story as listed in John 2:1-12 and saw that there were no varient readings listed at all for the Greek word 'onos' (i.e., wine). I also checked "A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament," a more detailed exposition, and again there were no varient readings for 'onos.'

Is it possible that your reference drew from a Latin translation that had used an Anglo-Saxon text as the source? That might account for the use of "strong drink" in the text rather than the original Greek text referring to wine.

webmaster
06-03-2006, 02:39 PM
This is getting *really* interesting! I'm following this closely.

I'm also thinking about moving this to history of mead.......because it seems to be moving in that direction.

Dan McFeeley
06-03-2006, 03:46 PM
This is getting *really* interesting! I'm following this closely.

I'm also thinking about moving this to history of mead.......because it seems to be moving in that direction.


Yay!!! Mom-wench says we're behaving better so we can go back to history of mead. ;D ;D ;D

Oh -- that was the "Did Jesus Drink Mead" thread that got moved. :-[ Well, we're still working on behaving better, aren't we? ::)

webmaster
06-03-2006, 04:00 PM
LOL....in the Hive, pretty much anything goes unless it:

1. Bashes someone elses beliefs
2. Flames

Beyond that......have at.

storm1969
06-05-2006, 10:19 AM
Yay!!! Mom-wench says


That contraction is a little disturbing! ;D :D :)

Johnnybladers
06-05-2006, 08:40 PM
Yay!!! Mom-wench says


That contraction is a little disturbing! ;D :D :)


I wonder if Oedipus drank mead

Dan McFeeley
06-06-2006, 01:46 AM
[quote=storm1969 ]I wonder if Oedipus drank mead


It's very possible -- mead was known in ancient Greece.