Hellenism (and with that Julian Hellenism) is a polytheistic religion; meaning it has a belief in many Gods and Greater Kinds. Julian Hellenism is also monistic religion, with the plurality of substances being due to different states or appearances of a single substance derived from the One, as well as the emanation of divinity that derive from the One and subsequent divinities. Atypical of monism, however, is that Julian Hellenism has a duality, which makes it also a panentheist religion, with the divine being simultaneously both transcendent throughout the cosmos and imminent, looking over and animating the universe.
The Gods are eternal beings that surround and permeating unhindered the entire material universe and act on it. They are infinite, unending, perfect and unborn, their origins being prior to time itself.
Iamblichus refers to the Gods as monoeides, meaning “in the form of singularity.” The Gods exist as a single essence prior to becoming distinct, as unity precedes the existence of multiplicity. In this they are unitary and emanatory as manifestations of their singular divine source, the One. They derive from the One through simple multiplication of itself into a multitude (and thus preserving most of its attributes, as everything is multiplied oneness) and functioning as horizontal extensions of the same power, which leads back to that unity.
They do not intervene in the realms of actions of other Gods, cease to exist or combine into one. They do not have either gender or any other characteristic of mortal beings; instead, their substance is entirely alien to us. Their essence is wholly intelligible and beyond our material realm, and their bodies present in the material cosmos, such as the stars and the planets, are merely ruled from the outside. Though their essence is wholly intelligible, the movement of the Gods is spherical, and thus perfect.
The Gods are not subject to Fate, but rather are above it and overlook Providence. Their wisdom sees very far, or rather sees the whole, and so their light puts you on the right path and brings to pass what is best. They are the causes of all that is now and all that shall be.
The divine are beings (Ontos), not persons, as persons denotates human limits which the Gods lack because they are so beyond us. Though they are not seen by us, they can direct their divine gaze, which is more powerful than any light, towards us– even as far as our hidden thoughts.
We know of the Gods innately because in all people, whether in private or public, whether as individuals or as peoples, there exists a universal striving towards divinity, for we all believe, even without any instruction, in the existence of something divine; for there is no one who does not raise their hands to heaven in prayer when they swear by the Gods. It is here in this innate knowledge that we can find true knowledge of the divine, which is not easily acquired by everyone, and even by those who attain it, it is unable to be communicated at all, or at best with mediocrity.
Worship and sacrifice isn’t given to the Gods to “appease” them. The Gods are not angry with sinners, for to be angry would be to passion. The Gods do not rejoice- for what rejoices also grieves; nor are they appeased by gifts – for if they were, they would also be conquered by pleasure. The Gods are always good, always do good and never do harm, instead always being in the same state and like themselves. Instead, when we are good, we are joined and cling to the Gods when we show likeness to them by living according to virtue, and when we become evil we make the Gods our enemies – not because they are angered against us, but because our sins prevent the light of the Gods from shining upon us, instead putting us in communion with spirits of punishment. If by prayers and sacrifices we find forgiveness of sins, we do not appease or change the Gods, but instead, by turning toward the divine, we heal our own badness and so again enjoy the eternal and infinite goodness of the Gods. To say that the Gods turn away from evil is like saying that the sun hides Himself from the blind. We provide the Gods with worship for ultimately our own benefit, for the Gods are beyond us and need nothing, and because they are beings worthy of worship, being so beyond us and responsible for all kinds of good and no evil.
The Pre-Essential Demiurge
The Celestial Demiurge
The Sub-Lunar Demiurge
Other Gods (Unorganized)
- The Great Mother
The Olympians, otherwise known as the Dii Consentes, are the 12 divinely revealed Hypercosmic powers of Hellenism. It is comprised of six Gods and six Goddesses. The concept of twelve Gods is ancient and sacred, being older than any extant Greek or Roman source, though truly coming to fruition in ancient Athens. It is written to have been present among the Etruscans as well. In Rome, the statues of the Olympians stood in the Forum of the city and later the Porticus Deorum Consentium, one of the last public pagan shrines that were still functional in Antiquity.
The Twelve Olympians are:
- Zeus (Iuppiter)
- Poseidon (Neptune)
- Hephaistos (Vulcan)
- Demeter (Ceres)
- Hera (Juno)
- Artemis (Diana)
- Apollon (Apollo)
- Aphrodite (Venus)
- Hermes (Mercury)
- Hestia (Vesta)
- Athene (Minerva)
- Ares (Mars)
Ekklesia Neoplatonismos Theourgia. “Ekklesia Neoplatonismos Theourgia Catechism.” Ekklesia Neoplatonismos Theourgia. Accessed July 17, 2017. http://theourgia.org/catechism/.
Flavius Claudius Iulianus Augustus, and Wilmer Cave (France) Wright. The works of the Emperor Julian. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2006.
Iamblichus. De Anima. Translated by John F. Finamore and John M. Dillon. Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature, 2002.
Iamblichus. De mysteriis. Translated by Emma C. Clarke, John M. Dillon and Jackson P. Hershbell. Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature, 2003.
Kupperman, Jeffrey S. Living theurgy: a course in Iamblichus philosophy, theology and theurgy. London: Avalonia, 2014.
Sallustius, “On the Gods and the Cosmos”, 4th Century AD, accessed May 17, 2017, http://www.platonic-philosophy.org/files/Sallustius%20-%20On%20the%20Gods%20(Taylor).pdf
Shaw, Gregory. Theurgy and the soul: the Neoplatonism of Iamblichus. Second ed. Kettering, OH: Angelico Press, 2014.