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Jung Society of Atlanta – Hermes and the Creation of Space
Hermes and the Creation of Space
by Murray Stein

The Greek God
Who was Hermes? The great 19th century German mythographer, W.H.Roscher, identified Hermes as the wind, subsuming under this basic identity all of his other roles and attributes – Hermes as servant and messenger of the sky god Zeus, Hermes as swift and winged, Hermes as thief and bandit, Hermes as inventor of the pipes and lyre, Hermes as guide of souls and as god of dreams and sleep, Hermes as promoter of fertility among plants and animals and as patron of health, Hermes as god of good fortune, Hermes as patron of traffic and business activities on water and land. Ingeniously, Roscher tied all of these functions to the primitive perception of a wind god. Hermes is like the wind. We can hear Shelley’s “Ode to the West Wind” as a moving hymn to this god:

O wild West Wind, thou breath of Autumn’s being,
Thou, from whose unseen presence the leaves dead
Are driven, like ghosts from an enchanter fleeing…

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