Monday, March 28, 2016

Ancient History of the Lyre

I've been very musically inclined recently. Music has an important part in Wicca and the Craft. It has been used to invoke, to heal, and to aid in raising energy. In this post, I would to list a couple of instruments that help invoke the elements before moving on to the lyre, an instrument that I am highly drawn to because of its immaculate history in mythology.

Instruments that invoke the Earth include the drums. All types of drums can be used in doing this. Drums symbolize the rhythm of the heartbeat and help tie or ground all the other instruments together. It's low vibrations are attuned to the heartbeat of the Earth Mother; the music soothes her and heals her.

Fire is invoked through the harmony of string instruments such as the guitar and lyre. This is fitting considering that Apollo, the Sun God, was said to be the master of the lyre. By strumming the strings with your passionate hands that you use to touch others intimately, you are invoking the element of fire.

Instruments that invoke water have deep emotional sounds such as the gong and bells. Bells are traditionally used in invoking the Watchtowers of the directions to be present within the sacred Circle. They are also used to signal the beginning and the end of raising energy, meditations, and signal other ritual work. These bells have rich tones invoking emotion in relation to water.

Air is invoked through wind instruments such as the flute. Our breath fills these instruments to incite wonderful high pitched sounds that can create a beautiful orchestra of sounds. Use these instruments to invoke air with the breath you offer through these instruments.

So now, finally, the lyre. The lyre is a string instrument played by the ancient Greeks and is possibly one of the most important instruments to them. Hermes is credited with creating the lyre that was meant to help him steal cattle from Apollo. When Apollo discovered the theft from his sacred herd, Hermes traded him the lyre to appease him. He eventually became a master at playing the lyre and was said to have taught the great musician, Orpheus.

Other to be seen with the lyre include Eros, the God of Love, and the muses. Most players of the lyre were male as it invokes a masculine element but there are mentions of female players. Achilles was also taught to play the lyre by the centaur Cheiron. Plato also considered the lyre to be the only instrument suitable for musical education.

So as we can see, the lyre is definitely an instrument of nobility and charm!

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