The Eleusinian Mysteries (Greek: Ἐλευσίνια Μυστήρια) were ceremonies held every year for the cult of Demeter and Persephone based at Eleusis in ancient Greece.
They were religious practices characterized by initiation rites, cathartic and ecstatic practices, and a code of silence.
These myths and mysteries were the most famous and begun in the Mycenean period (c. 1700 BC) and lasting two thousand years, were a major festival during the Hellenic era, later spreading to Rome.
The rites, ceremonies, and beliefs were kept secret, as initiation was believed to unite the worshipper with the gods and included promises of divine power and rewards in the afterlife.
Since the Mysteries involved visions and conjuring of an afterlife, some scholars believe that the power and longevity of the Eleusinian Mysteries came from psychedelic agents.
Eleuseos means “the coming,” so the word Eleusinian refers to a spiritual advent.
Mysterion means to close the mouth or eyes; its root mu imitates the sound made with the lips closed.
Mysteria thus signified an event defined by closing the lips, closing the eyes, and entering into darkness.
The journey of consciousness taken from that point onward was a mystery indeed, and yet we will explore these mysteries.
This is a picture that I took a few days ago on the upper terrace in Varanasi (Benaras) for our new catalogue.
The poses, the light and of course the fact that we mostly had throws to drape were easily reminding me sculptures of the Hellenistic period.
Now I am playing with those images and others that I took in Le Louvre museum, making a fallacy of equivocation and misleading the viewer’s perception.