The Gods and Goddesses of Greece, and the Greek Creation Saga Notes by Dr. Honora M. Finkelstein 6 - Variations in the Bacchic and Dionysiac Rites DIONYSUS was supposedly torn apart by Maenads, madwomen who were drunk on wine. BACCHUS, in a Roman variation of the story, was torn to pieces by 12 Titans.The giants brought about his destruction by making him fall in love with his own image in a mirror. After dismembering him, the Titans first boiled the pieces in water and afterward roasted and ate them. Pallas Athena rescued the heart of the god and from this one part Bacchus was able to regenerate himself. Jupiter threw his thunderbolts at the giants and destroyed them, then burned their bodies to ashes. Out of the ashes, which contained a part of the body of Bacchus, which they had eaten, the human race was created.  Symbolism  The young Bacchus represents the rational soul in the mundane world. The 12 Titans suggest the 12 signs of the zodiac, which control the material level. Bacchus is the sun, dismembered by the signs of the zodiac and from whose body the universe is born.   His heart is the immortal center of the rational soul. The rational soul of the world, which was once ONE, was broken up and distributed by the Titans throughout the world, but the heart could not be destroyed. The body, however, was boiled, symbolic of immersion in the material universe, and then roasted, eaten, and finally turned to ash; it goes up in smoke, which ascends, thus suggesting the ascension of the spiritual nature out of form when the form is utterly destroyed.  Man is part matter, suggested by the fragments of the Titans, and part spirit, suggested by the sacred immortal flesh of the god Bacchus. Therefore, man is capable of either rational or irrational behavior.  As with the mysteries of Osiris in Egypt, when the various parts of Dionysus or Bacchus are collected from wherever they have been scattered, the god is resurrected. Made with Xara Website by Susan Smily