Delphi, a Religious Retreat

Abbey. H


Delphi is located in Greece. 180 kilometers from the capital, Athens. Near the gulf of Corinth, located with a high elevation on Mt. Parnassus. Delphi is a sacred and religious tourist attraction. Known for its historical and religious sights, that are still here today. Delphi is one of the most sacred and religious places in Greece.

Below is a virtual map of Delphi.

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Delphi is a religious and sacred destination for all. Surrounded by nature and history that has lived up to this day. What most people consider is that Delphi is a religious destination. Mainly because of its unique history, many people come to Delphi to pray. And to feel connected to its sacred beginning. But Delphi is not only for religious people. Delphi is surrounded with some of the greatest temples ever built. To honor the gods that the people worshiped, each temple is coated with the beautiful architecture of that time. In Delphi you can actually see the past. Delphi also offers many great tour guides to the area, theater shows, and walks to see some of its sacred artifacts. Delphi is a beautiful retreat, for anybody who likes to see historical and ancient traditions, come alive.
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History of Delphi

The Oracle of Delphi

Delphi's religious and sacred reputation, all come from its past. Delphi has many reasons why its so special and sacred to history. And why so many people consider it to be sacred. One of the main parts of Delphi's history is, The Oracle of Delphi. The Oracle of Delphi, also know as The Oracle of Apollo. Is a place where people from all around the world, would come to ask advice. This took place in Delphi's main temple, with a Pythia, a girl priest. Who people would come to see, when wanting advice. But there was a process to see the Oracle of Delphi. First, there was purification rituals. You had to wash in the Castalian Spring, a sacred fountain in Delphi. That was considered to be holy. Next, you had to burn laurel leaves. And then, you had to drink the holy water of the Castalian Spring. Then, they would sacrifice a goat. Which was a very important tradition to their culture. Finally, you would offer a special type of pie, called Pelanos. A Greek pie that was traditionally used in offerings. Then, they would be allowed into the temple. Where the Pythia would give her advice in the form of usually a tranced, gas induced room. This process took days to complete. And it was so sacred, that it could only be performed on certain days.The advice from the Oracle of Delphi, was considered to be true and would give you the answers to anything. This was a Delphi custom, that is still worshiped and remembered today.

The Pythian Games

Another thing Delphi is know for, is the Pythian Games. One of the four Panhellenthic Games. The Pythian Games, were a series of competitions held at Delphi. The Pythian Games began somewhere between 591-585 BCE. The Pythian Games were held to honor various gods, but mainly Apollo. The first Pythian Games were known to be a strictly musical competition, where people would mainly sing or perform acts for Apollo and other gods. But over time, the Pythian Games expanded and evolved. The games were no longer only musical, but then opened up to athletic competitions. At first, the Pythian Games were only held every eight years. But later, they were held every four years. The Pythian Games, were held in Delphi's ancient theater. Now, a very large attraction that most people see when they travel to Delphi. The Pythian Games were a very special and sacred tradition that most of the people in Greece celebrated. It is another part of Delphi's history, that makes Delphi such a historical and religious place.

The Temple of Apollo

On the sacred grounds of Delphi, there are many temples and treasuries built for the Greek Gods. But the one that stands out the most is the temple built for the God of Delphi himself. The Temple of Apollo dedicated to the Sun God, who's home was Delphi. The temple was built by two great ancient architects, Trophoinios and Agamedes. The temple was built out of mainly porous and limestone. Today, especially the limestone is decaying. It had 6 to 15 columns surrounding it. These columns around it, were sculpted out of Parian marble. Inside of the temple, were treasures built by the surrounding city-states. To remember certain victories in battles. But in 373 BC, the temple was mostly destroyed by an earthquake. But then after the temple was destroyed, it was re-built in 330 BC. By architects from nearby Cornith, Spintharos, Xenodoros, and Agathon. If you visited Delphi today, the main temple you would see was built in the 4th century. But the remains from the earthquake that are still there, were from the 6th and 7th centuries. The Temple of Apollo is one of the main reasons people come to Delphi today.

The Overthrow of Delphi

Delphi was a thriving and very important sacred place in the ancient world. Including to all the people in Greece. Delphi was a sacred home to all. People found peace and tranquility around the very site. But in 480 BCE, things started to change. In 480 BCE, the Persians attacked the site of Delphi. The Persians got Delphi into many future wars and battles. But in 191 BCE, Delphi was overthrown again and belonged to the Romans. The Roman Emperor Theodosius Augustus, made a degree in 393 CE. Declaring all of Delphi's sanctuaries and temples to be shut down. But today, Delphi is far from abandoned. With its religious and sacred past. Delphi is used by many religious people around the world today.
Here is a Photo Sphere of Delphi

Religon of Delphi- Greek Religon

Other than its beautiful surroundings, tours, and old relics. Delphi is famous for its religious past. The religion Delphi practices is called Hellenism. Hellenism is also known as the Greek Religion. People who follow the Greek Religion are called Hellenic Polytheists. The religion Hellenism is a very unique a special religion, that has been sacred to the people of Greece for many years. The religion Hellenism is a polythestic religion, which means the belief in many gods. Each of the Greek Gods represent a certain personality trait of humans, specific place, or thing. Like how Delphi has a special religious significance, to the god Apollo. There are many different Greek gods that are in the Greek Religion. In Delphi, the people who worship these gods go to specific places. There is many sacred sites, temples, and holy places that Hellenic Polytheists go to pray to a certain god. Each one of these places, were built for a certain God. These special temples and sacred places are an important part of the Hellenic religion.

Another interesting part of the Greek Religion, is how they worship and pray to the gods. In the Greek Religion, there is many special rituals they use to feel more connected to the gods. One of the most common rituals, is when people pray to a God. This ritual is to accompany the prayer that you are saying to the god. The first part of the ritual, is you would sacrifice an animal. Animals sacrificed were usually pigs, sheep, goats, and cows. The animal is the same gender as a god. Then, they would cook the meat. The meat had to be either burnt or completly cooked. Then, part of the meat would be eaten by the person, and the rest would be left for the god. The sacred sacrificing of the animal, or killing of the animal. Was done by a Megiras, a butcher or a cook. While a young girl sprinkles seeds over the animals head. After, a priest who is the same gender as the god. Delivers the prayer with the animal to the god. This common practice is one of the unique rituals of the Greek Religion.

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Why Delphi is Sacred to this Religon

Back in the ancient world, Delphi was considered to be the center of the entire world. Many people would travel the world, to come to Delphi. And worshiped its religion and beliefs. Delphi was very important to the Greek religion because it provided many of the things that make this religion special. Delphi consists of many temples and holy places, that religious people would come to pray to the gods. Delphi was also considered to be the most sacred place of the Greek Religion. Delphi also provided ancient artifacts and temples, from the gods. That the people of the religion would cherish. Delphi plays an important role in their worship because it has the ancient temples which the people worshiped at. Delphi also has natural holy sites, like the Castilina Spring. That can only be found at Delphi. Delphi is very important to this religion, because without Delphi there would'nt really be a start to this religion.

Fun Facts

  • Despite its Mediterranean Climate, Delphi has freezing winters colder than other parts of Greece, because its in a mountain range
  • Delphi was one of the most sacred places in the ancient world.
  • Apollo killed a python serpent, so people built him a temple to thank him
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