The people are friendly and hospitable. One's name and reputation are crucial in the Homeric world. Poucet 1985, Les origines de Rome Brussels , p. However I do recall that around this time I did sink into intense depressive episodes accompanied by scorching headaches which did precipitate borderline mystical states. Odysseus finds the men, literally drags them back to the ships, and ties them to the rowing benches. I learned that one of my closest friends that I knew in the psychedelic scene had died from drug taking. For the purpose of the current discussion we'll assume that indeed there are many doors to the eternal and that one of them involves the use of these psychedelic agents.
One day Odysseus fell asleep, and Eurylochus convinced the men to eat the Cattle of the Sun: it's better to die at sea from the wrath of the gods, he said, than to die of hunger. Odysseus could have left the men on the island, but chose to do his duty and physically fight the men to get them back onto the ships. Now in retrospect, even though I wouldn't have planned out this course that my life had taken, I can see now that there was a prize at the end which I definitely consider to be worth the cost. It is during this episode that Odysseus' judgment comes into question. While several intrepid historians have tried to locate the site of the island, they have yet to find a location which matches the description in The Odyssey.
During this time, in and around 1995, I was living in the Farringdon area in London, which positioned me perfectly for going to any and every psychedelic event in London. This manner of introduction was very formalized and formulaic in Homeric Greece and should seem familiar to readers of the Iliad. Other alternatives include the nettle tree and the blue water lily found in the Nile river. Anyone who eats this sweet plant becomes forgetful of their purpose. When Odysseus encounters the Lotus Eaters, some of his crew famously partake of the food, and they express a desire to stay on the island. This format will link back to this page, which may be useful but may not be required. Like the heroes of the Iliad, Odysseus believes that the height of glory is achieved by spreading his name abroad through great deeds.
This time, Odysseus' judgment prevails, and he manages to get his men back to sea before too many are seduced by the honey-sweet fruit that wipes out ambition and memory. He first went north to the for a while; he sacked the Ciconian town of in on his way back. Following the victory at Troy, he and his men sail to Ismarus, the stronghold of the Cicones. As a result, he questions whether the western Mediterranean was known about at the time the original legends emerged which he estimated to be some centuries before Homer composed the poem and so consequently he doubted whether the stories had their origins there. He warns Odysseus to not touch the cattle of the sun god, Helios.
Incidental mentions of and its house, , , and hint at geographical knowledge equal to, or perhaps slightly more extensive than that of the. This state of affairs lasted for a few months or so, but gradually I slowly returned back to normal and this door became closed again. The wrongly attributed to Apollodorus summarises most of the accounts given above. One of Ulysses' ship when a sh … ort and the men set out to scout for provisions. I become something of a loner, I read and thought a lot. It is notable that the poem the referred to Corcyra in the context of the story of , which was earlier in the mythic age than Odysseus, but does not seem to have identified it with Scheria Naupactia fr.
The lotus that the lotus-eaters ate contained a type of drug. So I would show up a little early a do a little work. I would typically go to bed at around 7 or 8am in the morning, sometimes later, and then wake up in the late afternoon or early evening. The history of this island is not merely a few hundred years old, but thousands. As an effective narcotic, the Egyptian Blue Lotus could well be the mythical food of the lotus-eaters. In rare cases, where they did not eat the lotuses for a while, and came out of their stupor, they still remained very restless and easily distracted.
Odysseus is here going through the motions of confirming his kleos the glory or renown that one earns in the eyes of others by performing great deeds. The foreboding that Odysseus feels as he heads toward the cave, which seems to prompt him to take the wine along, foreshadows his upcoming encounter with Polyphemus and the need for trickery to prevail. I had grand plans to one day go to silicon valley and start a software company. I recall now that the drug was used quite recreationally. After eating the lotus flowers, his men disobeyed orders and forced Odysseus to physically bring them back into reality. Finally, a recent publication argues that Homeric geography is to be found in the sky, and that the Iliad and the Odyssey can be decoded as a star map. When they had eaten and drunk I sent two of my company to see what manner of men the people of the place might be, and they had a third man under them.
After a brief period of rest on the shores of the new land, Odysseus sent three of his men to find the natives, and to find out if any sort of civilization existed there. Their diet causes them to be sleepy and languid, as well as disinterested in the world around them. Along the way he found on the map Cape Skilla at the entrance to the and other names that implied traditional links with the Odyssey. According to legend, the Lotus Eaters live on an island off the coast of North Africa. They used the plant for multiple reasons like food, recreation, the relaxing effects made it a good aide for sleeping, and for spiritual experiences. Students familiar with some of the legends of The Odyssey but new to the epic itself might be surprised to see that the section on the Lotus-eaters is only about twenty-five lines long 9. Odysseus' men eat the flowering plant and are immediately changed.
It made me feel closer to a world I yearned to be a part of but was very distant from, in my circumstances at that time. Let's just say that they weren't the nicest creatures in mythology. Special preparations derived from the root of the blue lotus pictured to the right may possess potent psychedelic properties if ingested at an adequate dose. And so free from the hold of the lotus plant, they all set sail for the next destination and leave the Lotus eaters behind in their terminal slumbers. The passage about the lotus-eaters from The Odyssey, was the source of the poem written by Alfred Lord Tennyson 'The Lotos-Eaters'. Many of these are of a fragmentary nature and just about all of these are difficult to depict visually of describe in words. This also shows the reader that Odysseus is a fearless leader who will stop at nothing to get his men home safely, no matter what the challenge or obstacle may be.
What does this all mean? Polyphemus, a son of Poseidon and nearly as powerful as the gods himself, scoffs at the concept of hospitality and welcomes his guests by devouring two for supper and trapping the rest inside his cave for later meals. So during this time I was able to get to know the strange and non conformist denizens of this druggy counter culture. Anyway, it was only after leaving the squat that my real investigations into the world of psychedelia and the land of the lotus eaters would begin. This was the aim to understand how the brain and mind worked. At a guess, I would have only been using a fraction of the dose required to produce any sort of transcendent experience. Regularly eating these lotus flowers seemed to slow down the aging of these beings, and this constant diet also created an aura of dreaminess around them.