The Magic Dance Rituals in Georgia

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Levan Aliashvili


Georgia as an integral part of antique civilizations, which is rich with pagan religious sacraments, the latter have been formed and developed in a well–organized social space. The existence of a religious service indicates the presence of a ceremonial culture for certain ethnos. The ritual performed in honor of a particular deity, clearly represents the existence of the sacral cult. This factor conditions to realize the religious development stage of ethnos, the development of a social space, as well as the world outline and the mentality.

The birth of the deities on the basis of the consciousness and social needs, their formulation according to the sector sections, the cycle of actions or additions in the ritual performed in the honor of the new deity, pursuant to the specifics of the cult, enables us to observe the development of the nation’s spiritual and life events.

The Magic dance rituals in Georgia clearly reflect the religious culture of ancient Georgia. Sacrifice, falling into prophetic trance are the ritual processes as a roundelay form, these are the necessary events in the ceremonial activities that were widely spread in the antique world. The aforesaid ceremonial activities are met in the different parts of Georgia. In spite of the changes of epoch and religious beliefs, it never goes beyond its principal core and is represented as a roundelay mystery everywhere.

Social development and diversification of the religious pantheon arise ritual spectaculars such as: “Lazarus” (ritual to end drought, heavy rain), “Gonjaoba” - rain-making ritual (women carry across made of two scarecrows house to house), “Kotikotoba” etc. But the ritual process is the staging of the sacrifice, cyclic quality of actions and high religious obedience, the ceremonial activities are necessary conditions here too. 

Only a highly developed society can create such a strong cult, which benefits from the general national authority, to implement the sequence of actions, to set the specific criteria for the participants of the ritual, to create the necessary attributes for the cult service as well as to gain a high confidence in the community.


Published: Apr 20, 2017

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University PHD Prorgam