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June 7, 2011

Sannion mentioned that he is celebrating a modern version of this festival to Aphrodite.

“On Sunday, June 12th we here in Eugene will be celebrating the Rhodophoria in honor of the goddess Aphrodite. This is something I came up with last year, combing two originally distinct festivals for her. The first element comes from Athens, Kypros and other parts of the Greek world where they would take the cult state of the goddess from her temple down to a nearby river and bathe it to renew her purity and power. The second element comes from the Hellenistic and Greco-Roman Rhodophoria or Rosalia festival which celebrated the blooming of roses and was marked by grand feasts, beauty pageants and lover’s trysts. We find different goddesses being honored with this festival in different locations – Isis, Hathor, Aphrodite, the Kharities, etc. suggesting that it was the seasonal themes that took top priority. Since I have a much stronger connection to Aphrodite – especially in her role as goddess of fertility and vegetation – I’m keeping the festival in her honor.”

This seems like a good time to scrub my modern outdoor statue of her since it never made it back inside before winter set in.  I have this statue underneath a wild rose that I planted in her honor some years ago.  I even keep all the trimmings from the rose bush and either give those trimmings to people who want them or burn them at some point over the summer.  Here is a picture that I took of the statue and the bush a couple of years ago.

My Aphrodite Rhodophoria and her rose bush.

We will be in Denver this weekend so hopefully we will return early enough in the day so that I can “join” in this observance.

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