For the Greek and Romans the Oracle of Delphi was a cultural institution.
For more than 2000 years they went on a pilgrimage to Delphi to
ask for guidance from the oracle. The legend tells that the consciousness
expanding properties of the gasuous well were discovered by shepherds
who found their sheep talking to them. 600 before Christ the tempel
was built by Kleistenes in order to expand his political sphere.
Delphi had its zenith in the time from 800 to 500 before Christ.
It was closed in 391 after Christ under Theodosius.
came from a woman, the Phytia, who was in a small chamber in a state
of trance. This chamber of the temple was located above a well that
carried the gas Ethylene. Through a hole in the ground plate the gas
then passed through the Om-Phalos into the chamber.
Phytia got high as she stared into a bowl of water and inhaled the
gas Ethylene that filled the small chamber. Then she "spoke in
tongues" and the priests translated the message for the questioner.
pictures show the Dionysian exstatic music and dance that took place