By Alain Daniélou
Shiva and Dionysus are the Hindu and Greek gods of magical strength, intoxication, ecstatic sexuality, and transcendence who begin us into communion with the artistic forces of lifestyles. Revealing the earliest resources of the traditions of Shiva and Dionysus, Alain Danielou reconstructs the cloth of our old dating with production, vividly referring to practices that have been saw from the Indus Valley to the coasts of Portugal no less than six thousand years ago.
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Additional resources for Gods of Love and Ecstasy: The Traditions of Shiva and Dionysus
I n Roman contexts, the horned god was likened to M e r c u r y , no doubt i n his earlier role as the protector of the flocks and herds. . T h e sinuous serpent w i n d i n g r o u n d his caduceus is. . in accordance w i t h Celtic t r a d i t i o n . . A g a i n , the horned god appears as a k i n d of native Silvanus, god of the woods, naked and w i t h o u t attribute apart f r o m his huge penis. I n n o r t h B r i t a i n , another type of naked phallic god is figured, but w i t h o u t horns, therefore presumably of the Cerne giant t y p e .
T h e Shivaite sage and m o n k wander t h r o u g h the w o r l d naked and w i t h o u t ties. I n India, nakedness is synonymous w i t h freedom, v i r t u e , t r u t h and holiness. T h e ancient atheist religion of India, Jainism, w h i c h was in other respects the rival of Shivaism, also required nakedness of its followers. T h e Greek w o r l d was familiar w i t h the gymnosophists, the naked ascetics f r o m India, and the soldiers of Alexander w h o i n India wished to follow the philosophers' teachings also had to go naked.
I n Crete, coins from Kydonia portray a youthful Dionysus; According to another etymology given in the Shiva Samhitd. chap. 12. 30). Rudra means "the Howler". 49 Purdna (Vdyaviya GODS OF LOVE AND ECSTASY others, f r o m Polyrhenia, a horned Dionysus; the ones f r o m Sybrita show a bearded Dionysus holding a thyrsus; elsewhere, a young Dionysus r i d i n g on a galloping panther. T h e god appears in each region w i t h a different name and in a different guise. T h e parallels between the names and legends of Shiva, Osiris and Dionysus are so numerous that there can be little doubt as to their o r i g i n a l sameness.