Homosexuality.

Mar 2012
2,289
#54
Hmm. So unlike gods in other parts of the world, they were not role models?
Well, I am not sure that the gods in other parts of the world were all that great either. The Sumerian-Akkadian-Babylonian gods, for example, were always usurping each other.

Read through the thread a bit. The absolute answer to this is that there was no "Greece," but only Greek city states, all with slightly differnt customs. In Sparta, homosexuality was illegal. In Athens, it was legal but had to be kept quiet, as it was looked at as shameful. In Thebes, it was considered an ideal of sorts. The rules varied from city to city.
 

Moros

Ad Honorem
Jun 2012
3,066
#56
Read through the thread a bit. The absolute answer to this is that there was no "Greece," but only Greek city states, all with slightly differnt customs. In Sparta, homosexuality was illegal. In Athens, it was legal but had to be kept quiet, as it was looked at as shameful. In Thebes, it was considered an ideal of sorts. The rules varied from city to city.
Should a distinction be made between homosexual 'love' (attraction) and the homosexual 'act' (penetration)? Plato's Symposium suggests that the attraction of two people to each other (male/male; female/female; female/male) had a divine origin, but only when face to face.
 
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Mar 2012
2,289
#57
You are very well read on your sources, so can you point out where rape was frowned upon in the Greek States in the same way that homosexuality was?
Off the top of my head, the rape of Cassandra is something that the Greeks were punished for in the Illiad. Euripides has Ion speaking about the cruelty and unfairness of her rape at the hands of Apollo. Herodotus has some things to say about cruel Persian rapists of Greek women in the histories. The rape of Chrysippus condemns the house of Lauis.

That is what I can think of off the top of my head. Rape is generally regarded as bad within almost all societies. Yes, a lot of what would have been called marriage back then involves what we would call rape, and yes, it was probably all right for Greek men to have forcd sex with slaves, but certainly pulling women or boys off the street as did the gods was frowned upon.
 
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Mar 2012
2,289
#58
Should a distinction be made between homosexual 'love' (attraction) and the homosexual 'act' (penetration)? Plato's Symposium suggests that the attraction of two people to each other (male/male; female/female; female/male) had a divine origin, but only when face to face.
To an Athenian, yes. Again, it was done in Athens, but had to be kept quiet.

Another example would be Xenophon, who records that Agesilaus was a man of virtue for refusing the kiss of Megabatus. Xenophon, as an Athenian, sees nothing wrong with the idea that Agesilaus would want it, but records that it would have been wrong to accept it and that Agesilaus is virtuous for rejecting it.
 

Moros

Ad Honorem
Jun 2012
3,066
#59
Another example would be Xenophon, who records that Agesilaus was a man of virtue for refusing the kiss of Megabatus. Xenophon, as an Athenian, sees nothing wrong with the idea that Agesilaus would want it, but records that it would have been wrong to accept it and that Agesilaus is virtuous for rejecting it.
Agesilaus was the absolute paragon of all virtues according to Xenophon. His ability to suppress his desires and emotions (in all circumstances - comfort, love, judgement, food, drink, work, war, etc) is portrayed as almost superhuman. But that he desired Megabates is not frowned upon. The kiss was a symbol of honour - and it is that which he is rejecting.

In fact, Xenophon adds that Agesilaus later asked if Megabates would indeed kiss him. But when asked if he would kiss Megabates in return, he refused. His virtue in rejecting the kiss was not due to the homosexuality of Megabates or Agesilaus, but due to the self control of Agesilaus in his otherwise natural desires (of intimacy and seeking/showing honour due to personal feelings).
 
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Moros

Ad Honorem
Jun 2012
3,066
#60
Off the top of my head, the rape of Cassandra is something that the Greeks were punished for in the Illiad. Euripides has Ion speaking about the cruelty and unfairness of her rape at the hands of Apollo. Herodotus has some things to say about cruel Persian rapists of Greek women in the histories. The rape of Chrysippus condemns the house of Lauis.

That is what I can think of off the top of my head. Rape is generally regarded as bad within almost all societies. Yes, a lot of what would have been called marriage back then involves what we would call rape, and yes, it was probably all right for Greek men to have forcd sex with slaves, but certainly pulling women or boys off the street as did the gods was frowned upon.
The rape of Cassandra brought a curse because it had occurred to a priestess in a temple to Athena. The violation of the temple through sex was the cause, not the actual type of sex involved. For example, Medusa had sex with Poseidon in a temple to Athena and she was cursed because of the sexual act - not because it was rape.

Cruesa's lament is not about her rape, but the loss of her child. She believes herself childless because she abandoned her child and believes he is now dead, laments the implications that this has on her life, and blames Apollo. The plot leads to the praise of Apollo for looking after his son all along, and reuniting him with his mother. The rape is not the original focus, but has become such due to modern scholarship.

The 'abduction' of Chrysippus by Laius is (I believe) never referred to as 'rape'. That came with modern sensationalism. Taking away the son of the household you are being entertained in without the father's permission was a breach of hospitality. That was what caused the curse, not a rape.
 
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