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GORTYNA-PHAISTOS, JUNE 2024

GORTYNA-PHAISTOS, JUNE 2024

Another year of virtue lessons has been completed at STEGI! These are difficult lessons, since they invite us to confront ourselves only. It is a challenge, this endeavor, as you have no alibi to place the responsibility of your life upon. The responsibility is yours alone. You look for the reference point within yourself, and every day you measure the path you have taken to get closer to it. The obstacles are yours and they are the “chains” as Jean-Jacques Rousseau mentions, or the “lies”, the “conjectures”, the “opinions” as Plato mentions in the 2nd book of The Republic.

It is a time to reflect on the fruits of our labor and to celebrate.

The new Archaeological Museum in Gortyna inspires us for our celebration, in the ancient cities of the South of Crete.

First stop Gortyna. Tour of the archaeological site. The myth comes to life. Zeus and Europa, the daughter of Phoenix and Telephassa, give birth here under the plane tree to the three Kings of the most important cities of the Minoan era. Who was the Phoenix, who was Telephassa… Does the myth have any meaning…? In the Archaeological Museum we are amazed by the findings!!! Statues, indicative of Athena, Pythian Apollo, Artemis, Achilles, Hermes, Egyptian deities: Isis, Serapis, Hermes Anubis, stone inscriptions with laws, coins, ceramics, architectural elements reveal the long history and the culture of the region and especially of Gortyna. In the ruins of the temple of Pythian Apollo which was built during the classical period and it was used until the Roman era, we let our imaginations fly to the “invisible” city of Gortyna of those times. We saw a city beautiful, peaceful, a city of justice. Could it be that Plato was inspired by this city and its laws when he visited Crete and he wrote his work “LAWS” about the ideal state that exists in Crete?

“…it takes love to see what lies behind the temporarily ugly, and if the unknown is not obvious, it takes effort to know it first…” – Italo Calvino, “The Invisible Cities”.

We ascended the hill that the palace of Phaistos dominates. Awe for the natural landscape, for this famous kingdom, for the still unsolved riddle of the PHAISTOS DISC, questions about the relations between the logos -Φ- of the golden cutting and of Phaistos.

In a picturesque tavern in the surrounding area, we enjoyed food in the wood-fired oven, we sang, we danced. We rejoiced and in gratitude we took the road back.

WITH VIRTUE
MARIA TERZAKI

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