‘It is a great error to suppose that spirituality
flourishes best in an impoverished soil with the life half-killed
and the intellect discouraged and intimidated. The spirituality that so flourishes is something morbid, hectic and exposed to perilous reactions.’
Sri Aurobindo, India’s Rebirth
The structure of mythology is a major key to the decoding process, and is mostly made up of the information given in genealogical trees. Some of the genealogical branches have already been examined in the preceding chapter on the origin and development of life. This chapter therefore only discusses the descendants of the Titans, with the exception of a few sub-branches which remain unlinked either because the initiates of ancient times did not give any indications, or because they developed transversally to the main branches.
This structure includes a number of complexities and difficulties which must be taken into account during the decoding process.
The most common challenge results from the differences between the various versions handed down to us. This was and still is the main argument of those who deny that there are hidden meanings encoded in mythology. As we have said, the ancient poets are the most trustworthy sources in this domain. For in the domain of written texts, poetry received at the heights of the mind through inspiration has always been the privileged mode of expression of initiates. Approaches concerning other aspects of mythology, such as the historical, sociological, archaeological, literary or artistic, fall outside the frame of this study. However, the variations handed down by historians and mythologists, which are often compilations of lost texts offering contrasting points of view, must not be too hastily put aside. Over the course of centuries, with the growth of humanism and especially since the great tragedians, there was an increased interest in psychological movements with a concern for moral edification. Then as the wish for entertainment came to the forefront, odes and rhapsodies ceased to hold eternal truths.
Only a familiarity with primary texts can allow seekers to progressively discern which ones carry a truth resulting from experience.
The genealogies given by Homer and Hesiod, those in the ‘Catalogue of Women’ attributed to the latter and those given by other poets such as Pindar and Moschus best describe the most advanced stages of the quest. For myths recorded later on which complete the teachings meant for less advanced seekers, such as the myth of the Minotaur, we have principally retained the Library of Apollodorus as well as the excellent compilations of Robin Hard and Timothy Grantz.
To establish coherence between the genealogical trees and in order to avoid confusion between the teachings or experiences related by the different branches, homonymous heroes must be carefully differentiated: although their symbolism is similar, they represent different degrees of intensity.
For the ease of this reading we have however not differentiated them here, for instance through numbering, neither in the lexicon of interpretations of proper names nor within the text. But a familiarity with primary mythological texts allows one to easily identify them. (On this subject see Carlos Parada’s book Genealogical Guide to Greek Mythology , Jonsered: Paul Astroms Forlag, 1993).
The birth order of children from the same family is not always made explicit in mythology, especially in the children of Aeolus and those of Atlas, the Pleiades, who are key elements in the yogic progression. Different indications have been used to situate them in relation to each other, including the provinces and cities in which they dwell, the rivers associated with them and their descendants, etc.
The latter elements also allow one to link certain heroes or fragments of genealogical branches to precise stages of the quest, for instance in the case of Orpheus, the king of Thrace who initiated the Argonauts to the mysteries of Samothrace.
It is also necessary to note that many myths address extended periods of time if not the totality of the quest, a myth illustrating the final realisation of a particular progression. For instance, the victory over fear extending till the depths of the vital, illustrated by the myth of Perseus, can only be partly addressed to seekers at the beginning of the quest, although this hero was the great grandfather of Heracles, situating his famous Labours to a much later time. One must therefore consider that the work on the fears continue through the successive Labours, the fears having to be progressively eliminated from the mind, from the vital and finally from the body.
Genealogical lineages are always established according to the patriarchal order. When a god plays a role in the conception of a child as a ‘divine father’, there is often also a ‘human father’ who allows us to link the corresponding work with the aim illustrated by the heroine. In the opposite case, which occurs only rarely, the genealogical tree remains nonetheless uninterrupted and the line of descent is carried out through the women over a generation.
Mythological heroines will therefore be studied at the same time as the male characters with which they united. They generally represent the direction of the work to be carried out, the task to be accomplished or that has been already partly accomplished, and at times the evolutionary means for this.
Let us remember too the complexity of the concepts of masculine and feminine, which in the manner in which they are to be understood in this study depend on the plane being considered. Depending on her rank, a female character can represent either a force which counteracts the masculine in a dynamic way, a limiting power, a state or a perfection to be attained, or a power of realisation which for its perfected fulfillment requires a quality of receptivity.
The number of generations within each genealogical branch constitutes a complex problem for mythologists. By adding intermediary characters, they sometimes strove to give a temporary coherence to events linking different branches, while the structure used by initiates was most importantly meant to describe a spiritual progression independent of time. In fact, openings can occur in consciousness without eliciting specific experiences, and vice versa. We have therefore purposefully ignored this complex problem in this work.
As we have seen only few sources of information about the Titans exist, and except for those in the principal lineages many names vary depending on the authors. By following the organisation into couples given by Hesiod and applying the order obtained through their structuring characters, we have described in the preceding chapter the order of succession detailed in diagram 3. Although the names of Titans are sometimes spelled with a C instead of a K in this study, we will sometimes use the spelling closest to the original Greek so that the movements of energy illustrated by the characters remain visible.
Hyperion and Theia – diagram 4.
Koios/Coeus (Κ+Ι) and Phoebe- diagram 5.
Krios (ΚΡ+Ι/ Crius and Eurybia, daughter of Pontos – diagram 6.
Iapetus and Clymene – diagrams 7 to 16: genealogical branches of Atlas (the Pleiades) and of Deucalion (the Hellenes and the descendants of Protogenia).
Kronos (ΚΡ+Ν) / Cronus and Rhea- diagrams 17 and 18.
Okeanos/Oceanus (Κ+Ν) and Tethys- diagrams 19 to 25, genealogical branches of the Oceanides, the Inachides and the Asopides, as well as of several minor branches.
The descendants of the two Titanides Mnemosyne and Themis, who both united with Zeus, have already been examined during the study of this god.
We have also seen that the Titans Iapetus and Krios were associated with goddesses of lesser rank, for in all likelihood the initiates of ancient time were striving to express that the ‘true’ unions, which would logically be Iapetus with Mnemosyne and Krios with Themis, could not exist as long as humankind had not completed the preliminary stages represented by these temporary unions.
The children of Pontos are considered to be gods and goddesses, for they belong to the third divine generation.
Like the gods, the Titans represent forces with are simultaneously within and outside of us depending on the point of view which we adopt.
They are not gods but rather currents of consciousness-force, and belong to the Formless realm. On the other hand, the gods can manifest themselves under any form they wish.
The Titans belong to a world in which forces are polarised but not yet dual, and in which opposites are complementary rather than mutually exclusive. The masculine/feminine polarity as we understand it only appears at a much denser plane in the levels of consciousness. At the level of the Titans, the state of consciousness corresponding to each member of the couple are the expressions one of the other or represent the same force in two states, one at rest and the other in action.
For the Titans to be liberated from Tartarus where they were imprisoned by Zeus, a significant portion of humanity must have completed the progress through the mental planes and have attained the plane of the overmind, when Zeus will be deposed by his second child borne by Metis. This second child will have to ensure the transition from the overmind to the supramental. The ‘supramental’ will be able to contain all the Titans and Titanides, for it is the intermediary world between the Absolute and Creation, including the planes of the mind, life and matter.
The descendance of each Titan or Titanide will be discussed here over a few generations only, and will be explored in more detail in the following chapters.