More on the Horseman (Pagan Blog Project, Week 16)

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Last week, I posted a poem about the Horseman. Previously, I have written about Sabazios, one of the versions of the Thracian Horseman, and linked to others’ excellent writings about Him.

What’s so special about a guy on a horse?

horse

The image of a Hero (yes, another one of the Thracian Horseman’s names) riding on a horse, either into battle or off to save some innocent in distress, has been with us longer than writing. Even prehistoric cave paintings have horses and riders in them.

There is something epic about the horse: a living, breathing vehicle, that we’ve lost in our modern world of automobiles. Continue reading

God (Sabazios) (Pagan Blog Project, Week 13)

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G this week, is for god.

Which god, you ask?

Sabazios (Sabazius in Latin), the Thracian Horseman, comes to mind. There are a number of excellent writings on Himself, and His worship, throughout the ancient Near East in the forms of various horse-riding deities and saints, warriors and serpents. It’s even possible to see His imagery in the common Ptolemaic (and earlier Egyptian) images of Horus spearing a hippo or crocodile from horseback, that eventually morphed into Mari Girgis or Saint George, Egypt’s patron saint.

Horus the Horseman - Ptolemaic relief in the Louvre

 

Image of St. George (Mari Girgis) over a church in Old Cairo

Today, my Anomalous Thracian brother shared a link to P. Sufenas Virius Lupus’ most recent and most beautiful hymn to the Horseman with me, and I knew that I had to share it with you. For those who don’t link well, I hope that PSVL doesn’t mind if I share it with you here.

Serpent Sabazios
P. Sufenas Virius Lupus

Upon his horse, he defeats serpents,
horned and hooded, vipers and pythons,
but upon the earth and within it
he is the Serpent Itself.

He passes, golden, between the breasts
of the initiates, through their hearts,
and emerges below, whether male or female
or neither, from the region of their sexes.

The burrows through the earth he makes
are the trackways to Hades and Tartaros;
the ways he clears through our hearts
are devotion and virtue and good speech.

Thracians have known this for centuries;
Bithynians and Phrygians as well,
Karians and Lykians and far-off Scythians,
Keltoi and Galatians, and even the Greeks.

Through Meroe of Nubia and Egypt,
the Samothracian isles, and ancient Canaan,
through the marbled streets of Rome
and the forests of Gaul and Germania.

From the pristine landscapes of Hyperborea
to the titan-haunted halls of Olympus
the fame of Sabazios as serpent
is older than Chronos and Kairos.

His flitting tongue upon ears
is the beginnings of prophecy;
his venom in the veins
is intoxication and madness;

his coiling around the finger
is mastery of spear and sword;
his trampling underfoot
is the beginning of liberation.

(But is it the hero who tramples him
or is it he who tramples himself?
Only the eyes of a shadow can see it,
can know it with certainty.)

Through the breasts of gods, even,
he has wound his serpentine way…
therefore, for him this day
may offerings and praise be gathered!

*****

Khaire Sabazie!

 

Dele Mezenai, Horseman bless, each and every one of you.