Thursday, April 15, 2010
Diana Statue Audubon Zoo New Orleans
Teaching of Raven Grimassi once posted on LaVecchia yahoo group:
"The iconography of the early Roman period appearing in temple settings, was designed as a teaching aid. Everything on the statue is symbolic of the teachings associated with any given deity.
For example, Diana's bow recounts the lunar association (crescent bow) and the arrows recount the teachings of the rays of moonlight (drawing down the moon). Initiates were schooled in the symbols and their meanings, and when it came time for the initiates to become teachers, they could sit before the statue with a new initiate and by looking on the symbolism they would recall the teachings, and they could then explain what had previousley been explained to them. In effect, the statue itself is a "Book of Shaodws" if you will.
When animals appear with deities in ancient iconography, the animal itself is the primal form of the deity before it became personified. It is part of the teaching. In Neolithic art the wolf appears in context with what can be described as lunar symbolism. Early Greek and Etruscan art shows a lunar goddess holding up a canine figure. The wolf is both the symbol of the Mother (take Romulus and Remus suckling from the she-wolf) and of nurturing, but also of death. The giver and taken of life. Here we see Diana in both aspects, and so the wolf appears beside her to remind us of her primal nature."