Today I made honey cakes for Hermes

Hermes had been good to me these last two months, so I felt the need to thank him in a special way. He kept me safe during my travels as I moved back to New Zealand from the UK, he provided me with enough money to live off for a few months (I’m pretty sure he had something to do with the fact that before I left, I discovered a whole bunch of savings I had forgotten about), and through his goodwill I now have a job. I can’t thank him enough. But I can try.

Offerings are an integral part of Hellenic worship, so it went without saying that I would make one in Hermes’ honour. I wanted something that I could spend time on, so that I could meditate on him and his gifts to me while I prepared it. I was lucky to stumble across this recipe for Ancient Greek honey cakes. Honey cakes were a common offering in ancient times, and although they aren’t traditionally associated with Hermes, I kept feeling pulled back to them. It just felt right.

I baked and offered them today. Here they are:

Hermes cakes

Some of these were sacrificed, and some I ate (they were tasty). It was customary in Ancient Greece to eat leftover food offerings, so that nothing would be wasted.

In Hellenismos, the Gods don’t need our offerings. They don’t need to be worshipped, or even to be believed in. Neither do we offer and make sacrifices as bribes, so that the Immortals will be kind to us.

We do so because we love them. We recognise their influence in our lives and thank them for it, and while this is not necessary, it pleases them. If you are genuinely kind to someone, without a hidden motive or goal other than love, they are likely to be kind to you in return; and so it is with the Gods. This circle of kindness is called kharis, and it is one of the most beautiful elements of my religion.

I love Hermes, so I honour him. He has blessed me, so I honour him more. It’s that simple.

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About Artemisia

A Hellenic polytheist lighting stars in the sky and skipping stones across the Styx.
This entry was posted in Hellenismos and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Today I made honey cakes for Hermes

  1. claircasey84 says:

    Hi again Artemisia. I do enjoy reading your blog. If you have read any of my blog, you will see that I have started studying Wicca only a few months ago. However, what I have found while investigating this religion, is that it has been actually a doorway for me to explore other “pagan” (I know that term is sometimes disputed within the Hellenist community) paths. Now my study of Wicca really is not centered upon my desire to learn how to practice magick. It is more so because it allows me to explore my spirituality more freely than I have been able to before. However, I do find that I am more “fond” or “drawn” to the Greek deities and connect with them more easily than say the Celtic deities. While I have made it a point to study Wicca for at least a year, I have (thanks to your blog) been doing some research on Hellenismos. Are there any helpful resource links that you would recommend I look into?

    • Artemisia says:

      Hi Casey, thanks for your comment! I’m glad that my blog has inspired you to research Hellenismos. There are many resources out there to learn more about it, some historical, some religious, some a mixture of both. Theoi.com is great for learning about the Gods, and HellenicGods.org offers a wonderful perspective on a lot of subjects, from rituals and sacrifices to relations with Christianity. One of my favourite Hellenic blogs is Baring the Aegis (http://baringtheaegis.blogspot.com). Elani has some really good information and advice there. As for offline resources, people often recommend Walter Burkert’s “Greek Religion” (I just borrowed it from the library, I look forward to reading it). And of course, reading mythology as well as ancient authors like Homer, Hesiod, Plato (and many more) helps you get up close and personal with the Gods.
      Good luck on your pagan journey! 🙂

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