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Feather Files: Petelia Tablet

March 8, 2015

I saw a meme on Facebook with the quote:

I am child of Earth and starry Heaven,
but my race is celestial.
Petelia tablet (Orphica, fr. 32a, O. Kern)

So I dug around to find if that was an accurate transliteration…and it is sort of… The last line is a bit misleading.  The ending phrase is “genos Ouranion” which would be more accurately transliterated (as I understand it) as “my origin is from Ouranos”.  Ouranos being the of the Protogenoi , the primal ones.  He is the bowl of sky or heavens.  As states “The Greeks imagined the sky as a solid dome of brass, decorated with stars, whose edges descended to rest upon the outermost limits of the flat earth. Ouranos was the literal sky, just as his consort Gaia was the earth.”  So possibly a better transliteration is:

I am a child of Earth and Starry Heaven
but my origin is Heaven.

This would cover the idea that a little bit of the divine resides with in us.  But I prefer the below, which also includes our understanding of modern science:

I am a child of Earth and Starry Heaven
but my origin is the stars.

As always, YMMV



Now I hope to sleep without the phrase continually doing laps in my head. 

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