Apollonian and Dionysian Man Essay

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Essay Sample: Page 2
Zeus's mother, Rhea, made

him whole again. Semele's sister, Ino, and her husband Athamas, raised Dionysus as a

girl so Hera would not recognize him. Hera was not deceived. Her rage drove Ino and

Athamas mad. Zeus ordered Hermes, the divine messenger, to transform Dionysus into a

young goat. He wanted them to bring him to Mt. Nysa where he would be secretly raised

by nymphs, the joyous female spirits of the forests and mountains.(Johnson, 20)

     Dionysus spent his childhood gamboling over the mountainside, surrounded by

nature, learning the sensuous pleasures of the earth. The muses, one of his teachers,

inspired him with poetry and music. The saturs(half-men, half-goat) taught him wonders of

dance and exuberant sexuality. The sileni(part-man, part-horse),spirits of the springs and

rivers, taught him wisdom. Silenus, the intoxicated old man was Dionysus's predecessor.

He taught the young god virtue.(Johnson, 23)

     Years passed, Dionysus learned many things. The grapevine can only grow in the

sun's intense heat and moisture of the spring rain. Dionysus had been born of fire and

nourished by the rains of the mountain. He understood the power of the vine perfectly, and

marked his passage from childhood by inventing the art of wine-making. This would bring

humanity so much potential joy and desperation. Dionysus now stood revealed as a god.

Wherever Dionysus went, he invited
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