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Olympus: The Sirens

September 7, 2010

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“The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in its net of wonder forever.”
Jacques Yves Cousteau

The Sirens

Identity: Three hideous sisters

Description: Human-headed female creatures with bird’s legs and breasts. Later depicted in mermaid style with fishes’ tails

Symbols: The double flute

The Greek Myth

The word ‘siren’ comes from the Greek word meaning ‘to bind or attach’. The three Sirens of Greek mythology were named Thelxiepeia, the enchantress; Aglaope, she of the glorious voice, and Peisinore, the seductive. They were the servants of Persephone in that they lured people to their doom and therefore added to the numerical power of that goddess’ domain. Originally winged, they were deprived of their flight ability after challenging the Muses to a singing contest which they lost, their effrontery offending the god of music himself. Later the bird aspect gave way to the fish’s tail on a human torso, from which figure the traditional mermaid probably evolved.

In spite of their pernicious natures, however, they did not always prevail; the Odysseus episode serves to illustrate that it is possible to mingle or socialize with people who are not altogether trustworthy, providing one is not seduced by their words!

Upright Meanings

Binding or attachment. People who appear to be helpful, but are not to be trusted. The human singing voice.

Reversed Meanings

Self-deception. Seduction. Emotional blackmail. The lure of things that come too easily (beware sweet words and soft music!). Being ‘taken for a ride’.

Mata Ortiz wedding vase

 

Psychological Comment

We are sometimes required to enter unfriendly territories in order to complete the business at hand, face up to some impending difficulty or negotiate the next phase in life. Providing we go in with our eyes open, then all will be well. But how familiar is the statement: ‘To think that this happened to me, and they seemed such nice, friendly people!’

Siren people are usually past-mavens of the social arts. They do and say all the right things and, as far as flattery is concerned, they never fail to make the most pleasant of noices. But they will happily lead you into trouble, while shaking their beautiful heads and decorously declaring, ‘How very sad……’ as painfully you pick yourself up from the mud outside their doors.

Sirens may, on occasion, prove most helpful – as long as it suits their plans. The advice when dealing with them is always to ensure that there is an easily accessible mental ‘exit door’, through which you can escape with the greatest of spped and with the minimum of harm to your person should the necessity arise.

Siren power can exert strong emotional bonds that certain people find very hard to break. Better not to accept the fetters in the first place, the human condition being ever emotionally vulnerable. It can also manifest through the kind of frenzied displays much favoured by religious and political organizations that employ the emotional stimulus of music, powerful oratory and ego-patriotism to gain mass mind control. Self-deception, hearing only what one wants to hear and hallucinatory-based ego trips are also very much Siren things.

Human vocal skills of the popular variety are associated with the Sirens, classical talents coming under Apollo and his Muses or his sister, Artemis. In its negative mode, Siren music can be highly destructive, luring the indiscriminating psyche onto the rocks of hedonism, bodily neglect, chemical dependencies, negative addictions and self-ruin.

~ Words Murry Hope, Olympus: An experience in Self-Discovery.

Roll up! Roll up!

Barnum Effect : is a term that is used in psychology.  It is the tendency for people to accept very general or vague characterizations of themselves and take them to be accurate.  A good example of this can be seen when people believe what is said about them in psychometric tests, personality profiles, astrological predictions, and so on. This phenomenon is named after P. T. Barnum, who believed that a good circus had “a little something for everybody.” Even though the descriptions or descriptive terms used in the inventories, typologies, and tests can apply equally well to other people, some individuals are gullible enough to believe they are unique to themselves. Of course, this is exactly what happens with the horoscope, palm reading,  and crystal ball gazing (Referring to the comments of P.T. Barnum, 1810-1891, American showman, about public gullibility).

SQUAWK!!  Be careful out there kiddies………..is that wax in your ears?

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2 comments

  1. Wasn’t it P.T. Barnum who said that a sucker is born every minute?


  2. Yup…..and he was right!



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