Christianity teaches that God is transcendent, is separate from nature, and is represented to humankind through masculine imagery. Witchcraft holds a pantheistic view of God. God is nature, therefore God is in all things and all things are a part of God. However, this God is in actuality a goddess.
A fundamental belief in Goddess Worship is the idea that the goddess predates the male God. The goddess is the giver of all life and is found in all of creation. The importance of the Goddess symbol for women cannot be overstressed.
The image of the Goddess inspires women to see ourselves as divine, our bodies as sacred, the changing phases of our lives as holy, our aggression as healthy, and our anger as purifying. Through the Goddess, we can discover our strength, enlighten our minds, own our bodies, and celebrate our emotions.
The modern Goddess movement is an attempt to integrate the feminine back into the world as we know it. This means bringing the Goddess out of the shadows and back into the limelight where she belongs. Part of most modern Goddess traditions is the idea that Goddess exists within and around everything in creation. Therefore, if Goddess is sacred, then so is the Earth, so our bodies, etc. Moreover, the relationship between all of these things is equally sacred.
Therefore, not only do we need to revere the creations of the Goddess, we must revere the relationship and the systems that Goddess has created, for they each have their purpose. The problem is that we don't always know what the true system is anymore because our society is so corrupted by the patriarchy. For example, if we only examine the system as it exists today, we might come to the conclusion that women's place within the system is necessarily subservient to the men in the system. Naturally, eco-feminists would laugh at this idea. First of all, eco-feminism maintains that the natural order of things is not linked by hierarchical value, so the very notion of men governing women is absurd. The nature of things would require reciprocal communication and integral networking.
In light of this, then, Goddess religion asserts that Goddess and God cannot be viewed separately, but rather as a network of energies that work together to better the entire network.
The Maiden is the first aspect of the Goddess, presented to us as a young woman, blossoming into womanhood, exploring her sexuality and learning of her beauty.
She is most often depicted as a teenaged girl or a woman in her very early twenties.
Unlike the images of young women in many patrifocal religions, the Maiden is not necessarily depicted as a virgin in most Goddess traditions. In Catholicism, Mary is depicted not only as a virgin maiden, but continues to be a virgin throughout the duration of her lifetime, regardless of the fact that she was married and gave birth to a child. This has more to do with the taint patrifocal religions assign female sexuality than anything else. But because women's sexuality is not denigrated in Goddess traditions, there is no need to associate virginity with the Maiden Goddess.
In fact, the Maiden Goddess is seen as a particularly sexual being. Because she has just bloomed into her womanly form, she is particularly interested in her body and what it can do. She is interested in her beauty, and she learns to manipulate the affections of other's based upon her feminine wiles.
Some might take offense at my use of the word manipulate in the preceding sentence, but in fact, that is what sexuality is about, both on the part of the male and the female. Flirtation, courting and other manners of getting the attentions of the opposite sex is certainly a form of manipulation. It is not manipulation with malicious intent, to be sure, but when you attempt to curb the attitudes or thoughts of others through your own appearance or behavior, this is a form of manipulation, and by no means negative.
Because the Maiden is associated with the first blossoming of womanhood, adulthood and sexuality, she is associated with the Springtime. Just as her body develops breasts and she becomes sexually capable, so too does the Earth mimic her development. Flowers bloom, the Earth awakens from the deep sleep of winter and begins to procreate again. Animals lie with one another, flowers are pollinated. Spring is a time for new beginnings. It is the counterpart to the winter of Death.
Just as Spring is the counter to Winter, so too is the Maiden the counter to the Crone. The Crone is the embodiment of death, and subsequently rebirth, and it is through the aspect of the Maiden that the Crone is able to pass from this world and be reborn. As the young Goddess delves into her sexuality, and eventually becomes pregnant, the Elder Goddess may pass away and give her life that the Maiden may become Mother, and one day, Crone. The cycle is never ending.
The Maiden takes the Green Man (Horned Lord, many other names in many other cultures) as her consort. In some cultures, the Green Man may be her brother or even her son. At first glance, the courtship between the Maiden and the Sun God seems ripe with incest, because he is always somehow related to her. But if you read the myths associated with the Mother Goddess and how it came to pass that she became pregnant, you will usually find that she became pregnant by her husband, who has to give his life for one reason or another, and she agrees to bring him back into he world as the child in her womb. In essence, she gives birth to her husband, rather than taking her son as her lover. This is even true in the Catholic goddess vision: Jesus was the son of God, but he was also God.
Because this idea is confusing and can lead to ideas of incest much like I discussed above, the Christian church left Mary a virgin, thus bypassing the whole sexual encounter, and thus the issue of incest altogether.
Maiden Goddess of Note include:
Diana, Persephone, Kore, Bleudowedd, Artemis, Ariadne, Hestia,
Athena, Aphrodite, Minerva, and Venus.
The aspect of the Mother Goddess is probably the most widely known and most widely envisioned in most cultures. Because the Earth nourishes and replenishes us, most goddess cultures did pay reverence to the Earth as the Mother, and therefore the Goddesses that are most prominent and about whom stories are most prolific are the goddesses that are the representation of the Mother.
She is, in virtually every aspect, a divine or celestial representation of our earthly mothers. Everyone has an earthly mother, or at least did at one point, so we readily understand the relationship between mother and child. The mother is the protector, the care-giver, the kisser of wounds, and the disciplinarian.
The Divine Mother is no different.
Many of the most ancient goddess figures that archeology has uncovered are goddesses depicted as round, pregnant women. They feature large breasts and full, meaty hips. Some archeologists (patriarchal, close minded fellows, to be sure) have written these goddess figures off as nothing more than prehistoric
"porn" figures. However, the generally accepted opinion is that these figures, found in such places as France, modern day Turkey, and Egypt, are actually representations of a mother goddess. There is some speculation that perhaps these figures are not goddesses at all, but rather figures used in fertility rites to enable women to conceive children. This too is a possibility, but when combined with other information that we have (such as other evidence of prehistoric goddess worship, and the fact that the connection between sex and pregnancy was not made until much later than the dates associated with these figures) leads most scholars to believe that these statues are indeed goddess representations.
Although the depiction of the Mother Goddess as a pregnant woman is prominent, she is certainly not always seen that way. The Mother aspect may be seen with small child in tow (most often a boy, who later becomes her consort, as is discussed in the section on the Maiden). This aspect of the Mother Goddess plays on the care-giving, sweet, loving aspect of the Goddess. However, do not be fooled into thinking that the Goddess as Mother is a pussy cat. She can also be a warrior.
Like earthly mothers, the Goddess is fiercely protective of her children, and in order to provide that protection she will often don the face of the warrior. The Warrior Goddess most probably gained popularity among people who had begun to adopt a more patriarchal (or at least patrifocal) structure. It might be presumptuous to say that matrifocal cultures were not particularly warlike, but it is safe to say that patriarchal cultures were more so. In either case, the warrior Goddess did become popular. In this aspect she is Amazon, fierce and strong, and able to take on any man to protect what needs protection.
Just as the maiden is represented by the season of Spring, the Mother aspect is present in Summer. By summer, berries and fruits are ripe, ready for the plucking. Vegetable gardens are mature and harvest is close at hand. The sun is high in the sky, and even though the sun is typically seen as a Male Deity, some cultures did associate the sun with the Goddess, (most notably the early Egyptian culture) and thus the high sun of summer was associated with the Mother, who was also seen as the pinnacle of the cycle of life.
In western traditions, the Goddess remains pregnant until the Winter Solstice, at which time she gives birth to a sun god of some kind. (Note the adaptation of the Christian church …Christmas, anyone?) The Catholic Goddess Mary also falls into the category of the Mother Goddess, because she does give birth to King at Solstice. (At least this is how the Christians celebrate the holiday, even though biblical scholars suggest Jesus was very likely born during a warm month)
Mary is a curiosity though, because she is a Dual Goddess, and not a Triple Goddess as most multifaceted Goddesses are. She is a maiden because she remains a virgin (and though not all maidens are virgins, all virgin goddesses are maidens), and yet because she gives birth, she is also a Mother. However, there is no reference in the Catholic tradition of Mary as an older woman. Therefore, Mary's development ended with her at the Mother phase.
Mother Goddesses of Note include:
Demeter, Isis, Cerridwyn, Kali, Gaia, Oceana, Brigit, Nuit, Hera,
Selene, Anu, Dana, Arianrhod, and Epona
The Crone is the final aspect of the Goddess. The Crone is most often depicted as a Grandmother, a SageWoman, or a Midwife. She is the keeper of Occult Knowledge, the Mysteries and the Queen of the Underworld. It is through the Crone that knowledge of magick, the Dark, and other secrets of the ages are passed down.
The Crone is, in some ways, a Triple Goddess herself. She has lived through the tender, sensual age of Maidenhood, suffered the birth pains of Motherhood, and now carries with her the memories of these passages into her old age. But though she has experienced these events, these are not the things she represents, and therefore she is not revered for these traits. Nevertheless, having endured these experiences makes her the wise woman that she is, and enables her to guide us through the dark.
Her role as Midwife is both symbolic as well as actual. Traditionally, it is always the older women of the tribe who facilitate the birth of children, most likely because they themselves had gone through, but also because the role of midwife was a sacred position, and thus suitable for an older tribeswoman.
Certainly the Crone fulfills this aspect in that she is the midwife to the Queen of Heaven when she gives birth to the Oak King at Yule.
But symbolically she is the midwife in our lives as well, guiding us from one phase of life to the next. If you see progression from one phase of life to the next and can see it as a rebirth process, then envision the Crone as the aspect of the goddess that guides you through that time. Transition is very difficult, and for most people it is a time of darkness. It is a time where we have to rely on our intuition, because we are unfamiliar with the territory. But according to the myths and ancient lore, we receive our intuition from the Crone. It is she who guides us, and it is she who facilitates our birth.
The Crone Goddess is often times the least seen, because she does represent death, and with death comes fear: fear of the unknown, fear of losing our loved ones, and fear of being alone. But we must remember that with death always comes rebirth. The Crone always brings with her promises of the Maiden, and the cycle never ends.
The Mother aspect of the Goddess is discussed as being a Warrior Goddess, but the Crone can be a Warrior Goddess as well. Where the Mother Goddess is the blood of battle, the War Cry incarnate, the fighting Amazon, the Crone is the Strategy, the ability to see what cannot be seen. She is the seer, the General.
The Crone Goddess does not don the face of the warrior to shed blood, but she will provide the courage to walk through the dark, the ability to seek and destroy the enemy, whether the enemy is actual, or internal.
In many respects, the Crone Goddess is the aspect of the Goddess that is most called upon to conquer inner demons. This is due to the fact that as the keeper of mysteries, the Crone is also the Keeper of the Underworld. With her help, we are able to travel into the Underworld and fight whatever demons haunt us.
Likewise, once we are ready to be reborn, she again acts as the midwife and guides us once again into the light.
Crone Goddesses of Note include:
Hecate, Kali, Cerridwyn, Badb, Cailleach, Macha, and the Morrigan
written by susan lucas
Keywords: goddess isis hades underworld goddess hera moon inanna goddess hera goddess hecate goddess artemis goddess brigid medieval byzantine magical values frequently questions shin resh memoriae writings secrets
Christianity teaches that God is transcendent, is separate from nature, and is represented to humankind through masculine imagery. Witchcraft holds a pantheistic view of God. God is nature, therefore God is in all things and all things are a part of God. However, this God is in actuality a goddess.
Posted by Stella Clark
If you seek an insight into the future of your love life, why not do as they did in ancient Greece - and consult the Gods of Love. I'm delighted, today, to introduce a special system of celestial self knowledge which is based on a classical tradition, thousands of years old. It involves a potent mixture of ancient astrology, modern psychology and Greek mythology. Simply look for your zodiac sign in the list below. You will see two names; one representing the goddess you most usually have an affinity with and the other representing the one who is currently having the biggest influence on your life.
ARIES TAURUS GEMINI CANCER
Usually Usually Usually Usually
Artemis Aphrodite Athena Demeter
Currently Currently Currently Currently
Hestia Artemis Aphrodite Artemis
LEO VIRGO LIBRA SCORPIO
Usually Usually Usually Usually
Hera Artemis Hera Athena
Currently Currently Currently Currently
Aphrodite Demeter Athena Persephone
SAGITTARIUS CAPRICORN AQUARIUS PISCES
Usually Usually Usually Usually
Artemis Hestia Athena, Persephone
Currently Currently Currently Currently
Athena Athena Persephone Hera
Begin by looking up your 'current goddess' but then go on to read about your usual goddess. When you do this, you may need to translate my words a little - but if you convert them from a 'prediction' to a description of a 'personal habit pattern' the effort will reward you with a very revealing insight into your past. If you happen to know your Moon sign or your Venus sign, take a look at the goddesses these lead you to as well. Indeed, ideally you should read about all seven because they all exist as influences somewhere within your personality. The ones you can easily relate to are the ones you can learn something about your past from. The goddesses that you look at and say 'that's not really me' are the ones that you may just find, if you decide to summon and explore them, help make your future more fulfilling. Next, take a look at your man's usual and current goddesses. How do these compare and contrast with your own? Can you become more like his 'dream'? Can his 'dream' be deepened to the point where it encompasses your reality? Can you meet each other half way? The answer to all these three questions is yes... if you're both prepared to learn and grow.
IF YOU ARE A MAN: You are reading, today, about the 'woman of your dreams'. Try neither to get too excited - or too depressed if you feel she's a million miles from anyone you know. The idea is simply to understand more about her - so that you can begin to resist the usual 'big mistake' which so many males inadvertently make; of projecting this dream vision onto a real human partner. All too often, we fall in love with 'who we want our partner to be' and not' who she actually is'. Then, as time goes by and the real person fails to measure up to our own, imaginary 'inner goddess' the relationship turns sour. Look up your wife or girlfriend's date of birth. See which goddess she most closely identifies with. Learn to respect or even (dare I say this?) 'worship' that goddess and you'll find you automatically, in the process, imbue your real life partner with the confidence to be more like her own true self. How will this help you fulfill your fantasy? Well, every woman, when she's reallyfeeling free to be her own true self - and not 'obliged' to act out a role that matches her partner's expectations, will automatically manifest the best qualities of all seven goddesses... including the one you secretly yearn to be embraced by. Thus, in accepting that your loved one cannot be, all the time, what you want her to be... you will be helping and encouraging her to be what you want her to be SOME of the time!
Artemis, known to the Romans as Diana, was the goddess of the hunt and of the Moon. Tall and lovely, she lived a glorious outdoor life, accompanied by her own pack of dogs and band of nymphs. Though she wore a short tunic, this was not to attract male attention but a symbol of freedom (a long dress would have restricted her movement). Artemis was an accomplished archer but though she hunted fierce boars, she was known as a healer and protector of animals - and also of young girls whom she frequently rescued from 'a fate worse than death'.
Like Athena, Artemis was a daughter of Zeus. Though she was born by more conventional means, the legend tells that the moment she was born, she began to help her mother deliver her twin brother Apollo. This took nine painful days, during which the new born Artemis earned her reputation as a healer. At the age of three, her father gave her a bow and arrow, a band of nymphs to keep her company, the freedom of the woods and fields and 'eternal chastity' - which we might, in modern symbolism, translate as the ability always to choose her lovers and never to fall victim to force, persuasion or misplaced guilt.
Though Artemis was ever a symbol of strength, she also came to represent victims of tragedy and betrayal. She fell deeply in love with the handsome Orion, to whom her twin brother Apollo took a strong dislike. Apollo tricked her one day by pointing out a distant object and betting her that she could not hit it with an arrow. Never one to resist a challenge, Artemis let fly - only to discover too late, that she had killed her lover. Inconsolable ever since, she at least arranged for Orion to live on forever in the sky - and gave him one of her own dogs (Sirius - the dog star) for company.
You've just about had it up to here! Slowly, over the past few months, the spirit of adventure-loving Artemis has been welling up within you. As you begin to look at your current situation through her eyes, you're feeling less and less impressed with what you can see. You've already started to do something about this but you're very aware that there's a lot further to go... and you definitely don't intend to stop until you've gone all the way.
The question is though, all the way to where? Ideally, you want to go all the way to somewhere a very long way from where you are. You want to jump on a plane, a boat - or a very fast motorcycle and just head for the hills. Or the desert. You feel an almost overwhelming craving for space and freedom. You want, in the immortal words of Marlene Dietrich, 'to be alone'.
And yet, sadly, other circumstances probably make this all seem like an impossible dream. You've got commitments you can't just turn your back on. The spirit of Artemis within you is getting mighty fed up with these. She's champing at the bit, she's climbing the walls and she's absolutely determined to bring about a sense of liberation. How well does this bode then, for joyous news on Valentine's day? If you're single, it's hopeful. There may be no suitable man on your immediate horizon but in your current mood, you're rather glad of this. You really don't want anything more than a 'light' relationship at the moment... or at least, you don't want anything more substantial with anyone who doesn't truly represent a worthy catch. Catch, by the way, is very much the keyword here.
Artemis, as goddess of the hunt, enjoys pursuing her dreams as much, if not more, than she enjoys fulfilling them. Already, you're casting your eye around for someone special to pursue. Over the next few weeks, if no suitable candidate emerges naturally, you'll simply start seeking out new hunting grounds; deliberately placing yourself in social positions where you can meet a different type of guy.
There's no doubt you'll be successful in your quest. There's no doubt, either, that you've got a very exciting, active time ahead - and not just on the romantic front. There is though, some doubt about quite how well all this visit from Artemis is going to work out if you now happen to be in a committed relationship. Please don't misunderstand. You're not going to experience some tremendous urge to have an affair. Artemis is a very loyal lover. It's just that she hates to feel trapped, enclosed or 'obligated'. Your spouse, no matter how understanding he may already be, is going to need to be even more understanding and accommodating over the next few months. He's going to have to appreciate that you badly need to be left to your own devices. He's going to realize that though you're both very close, you have grown more like a brother and a sister than a pair of lovers. It won't do - and in order to get back together properly, you're probably first going to have to get a little further apart. You've got to shake off the stale atmosphere that has grown up (through no particular fault of anyone) in the situation as it currently stands. A change of scenery really could make a difference. Contemplate a move to the country if you live in the city - or a move to the beach if you live in the country! There's not much point in just hoping you will grow out of this yearning for space. Artemis is not used to losing. She simply won't depart until at least some of her demands have been met. If, therefore, a total change is out of the question, you'd better spend as much time as you can outdoors, riding, walking and generally burning off the excess physical energy you seem to have so much of. Your partner, if he's lucky, will also feel the benefit of this... but only if he keeps out of your way or has the good sense to make himself a little unavailable - so that instead of feeling hunted... you end up feeling like the one with the whip hand.
Athena was the beautiful warrior queen who stood guard over the ancient city of Athens. Though she was a brave swordswoman and an inspiration to the military forces, this graceful goddess of strategy and intelligence was also closely associated with arts and crafts. Her pronounced, piercing eyes were said to gaze fondly on the city's weavers, goldsmiths, potters, shipbuilders and dressmakers. She came to be the symbol of all 'great inventions' and practical discoveries.
Legend has it that the great Zeus was once plagued with a terrible headache. In the throes of agony, he persuaded Hephaestus, god of the forge, to strike him on the head with an axe. The blow was duly delivered and moments later, Athena emerged from the wound. As she proved to be a full grown woman in golden armor, clutching a spear and yelling a dreadful war cry, it is no wonder his head hurt. Zeus, instantly healed, turned to embrace his new found daughter and, from that point on the two were inseparable.
When Perseus killed the snake haired gorgon, Medusa, Athena watched the battle from on high and helpfully whispered into his ear, the idea of using a mirror so he would not be turned to stone by her gaze. Athena assisted Jason and the Argonauts to build the ship with which they sought the Golden Fleece. All the great warriors, including legendary Achilles and mighty Ulysses turned to wise but tough Athena for inspiration.
Are you the woman who knows no fear? You'd like the rest of the world to think so at the moment.
Athena, the warrior goddess has been influencing your outlook on life and love a great deal lately - and she's due to become even more of a dominant influence between now and the middle of the year. For as long as you're under her spell, you'll be manifesting her persona; trying, as hard as you can, to be a tough, independent, clever and resourceful woman with little time for frippery, frivolity or foolish things like 'feelings'. It's not that you'll be immune to emotion. Athena herself is by no means incapable of loving - or of longing. It's just that, while you are responding to the cosmic call from the queen of courage, you'll be more inclined to summon your strength than explore your weaknesses.
You're likely to decide that the best way to do this is to declare that for now at least, the things you feel, deep down inside, are nobody's business but your own. You don't want to share them with your partner or would-be partner, no matter how much you love him. You feel that he's got his own business to take care of... and you've got yours. Your love may involve a two way flow of respect and support but if it is to survive the next few months, it has to be based on mutual encouragement not consolation. You simply need to know that he loves and admires you for your strength - and that he trusts you to make the right choices. If you need anything from him, it is his insight and judgment not his constant concern. The crisis now brewing (and when Athena's in action, there's always one on the boil) is one you both must face together. Neither of you can afford, even for a passing moment, to feel sorry for yourselves or concede the possibility of defeat.
This year at least then, you therefore have little interest in the traditional trimmings of Valentine's day. Lovely though it is to be showered with gifts or flattering remarks, all you really want is to know you've got a battle companion you can rely on! If your lover complains you're not being especially romantic, explain to him that the time for whispering sweet nothings or indulging in a thousand slow sensual pleasures will, if he's patient, come round again. Right now though if he wants to excite your passion, he's got to stop treating you like some voluptuous Aphrodite and recognize that you're a woman with a mission.
All he has to do is support (or even join) you in waging the war you're so determined to win and he'll soon discover there's plenty of heat behind your cool facade!
The fact is that you're feeling pretty excited by the pressures you currently face. They are stretching your mind, helping you learn new skills, allowing you to plan great enterprises and creating chances to give plenty of people their orders!
There are moments when everything seems to be on top of you - but each time you conquer another difficulty, you feel on top of the world.
Romantic problems are only likely to emerge in the next few months if your partner fails, somehow, to show sufficient faith in you - or worse, undermines your own faith. If, in this way, he triggers your secret fear of failure - or if you allow the fact that you currently have no partner to do the same, you may end up playing out the Persephone syndrome.
This typically involves meeting a man who is deeply, desperately unsuitable yet finding yourself falling head over heels in fascination with him - because he 'seems to know something that you don't'. For a while, he becomes able to manipulate you as nimbly as a suave playboy might hypnotize a teenage girl. You eventually outgrow the obsession... but not before it has done some serious damage to your pride... and wasted time you could have spent far more profitably.
If however, you watch for that - and make sure you keep your eye on the battle... you'll not only emerge from your current worldly struggle with a sense of triumph, you'll also emerge from it with the kind of love life you really want!
Demeter, known to the Romans as Ceres, the goddess of the grain, will always be known as the goddess of motherhood. This is partly because both are symbols of fecundity - but also because of the myth of Persephone, Demeter's daughter... which must also be read in order to truly understand the 'protective spirit' that this goddess represents.
Demeter, like Hestia and Hera, was a daughter of Cronos. She too married Zeus. This though, was several thousand years before her sister did the same. The Greek gods may sound like a strange, incestuous lot but, when you live for all eternity, presumably, you play the game of existence by somewhat different rules. Certainly Demeter, as a symbol of dedicated motherhood, remains every bit as 'alive' as she did all those thousands of years ago.
The tale of poor little kidnapped Persephone tells us a lot about Demeter's determination. We understand even more about the sacrifices that a good mother has to make once we understand that, in her long quest to find and free her daughter, Demeter neither ate nor slept. She roamed land and sea and refused to give her up for lost - even when advised to do so by Zeus himself. For the sake of finding her daughter, she later suffered poverty, abuse and eventually, went berserk. She refused to be a goddess of their grain any longer and thus caused all the crops to fail. But it all paid off in the end - as truly devoted motherhood always does.
If you don't have children, you may be wondering whether this article about the goddess of motherhood can really apply to you. Perhaps, you're not so much wondering as worrying. This can't mean what you think it means can it? It may... or, it may be that your maternal instincts are going to be triggered in a less obvious way. All I'm prepared to predict is that, while you're under the influence of Demeter, you can expect your nurturing, caring spirit to come to the fore in a very big way.
If you do have offspring (of any age) it IS most likely to be through your child(ren) that this surfaces. It could though, be a project, plan, promise, passion or even a person that you come to see as 'your precious baby'.
You'll know what it is soon enough, if you don't already - for over the next few months, you are going to be all but taken over by a very powerful need to protect someone or something. So intense is this emotion likely to be that you will feel willing to sacrifice almost anything for the sake of your protйgй's well-being. You'll take on almost any task, consider almost any offer, be willing to go to almost any lengths. This will not necessarily be because the object of your adoration is in any actual danger; physical or spiritual. It will be because you tend to 'perceive a danger'. It is very important that you check, at regular intervals, whether this is real or imaginary.
Even if it is real, you have no need to worry. Whenever Demeter, the ultimate protective spirit is at work, the outcome of every saga can only, eventually be a happy one. What we cannot say with any such certainty though, is whether you will be protected from the vulnerability that your own intense desire to protect someone else gives rise to.
Valentine's day is coming up fast. The big question is, who do you want to receive a gesture from - and why? It's almost impossible for you, at the moment, to separate your own true feelings from your instinctive sense of duty towards the person, cause or situation you so much yearn to secure a better future for. This is noble but it's not necessarily sensible. You must be on the lookout for manipulative people, especially men, who are anxious to offer you the wrong kind of help for the wrong reasons. You need to check whether you're misdirecting maternal energy towards a partner who really needs to face up to his own responsibilities instead of getting you to pick up the pieces for him. Even if that's not the case and the situation you're trying to sort out is a cause truly worthy of assistance, you must ask yourself if you're not smothering, as opposed to mothering, the 'child' you feel so responsible for.
You're going to find the goddess Demeter a very fulfilling force to have on your side provided you don't let her lead you to extremes of panic or anxiety about a matter that's best seen in a more philosophical light.
If your urge to be totally responsible really does run away with you, it is likely also, to run away with your ability to feel like a whole person - and thus your ability to enjoy a whole love life.
Please therefore, take the time to read about some of the other goddesses in this feature. Take a look at Artemis and consider how she might suggest attack as the best form of defense in the situation you face. You can probably do a lot more to help whatever or whoever you so much want to assist by taking an assertive, dynamic stance rather than an all but helpless one. Athena, too, can teach you a lot about how to place more of an emphasis on strategy and thus less on stubborn determination. Remember too, that Aphrodite can be a great source of balance in a topsy turvy scenario. No matter how much you care about what - or whom, or why, things will not get any worse if you stop every so often and have a little fun. Indeed, through relaxing more, you could find you discover a way to make matters a whole lot better.
Persephone, known to the Romans as Core, was the maiden goddess. She symbolized innocence, beauty, vulnerability and served as a warning of the danger of temptation. Because of her association with the Underworld however, she also came to be known as a figure of depth, mystery and dark desire. Persephone was the sweet only daughter of Zeus and Demeter. One day, while out gathering flowers, the sinister figure of Hades appeared from nowhere, hauled poor Persephone aboard his chariot and hurtled off back to the underworld. There, he made her his bride. While her distraught mother searched the earth for her in vain, Persephone made the best of her lot and came to secretly enjoy her life in the world of darkness. Eventually, her mum tracked her down and, through Hermes the negotiator, secured her release. The deal between Hades and Hermes allowed Persephone to go free provided she had eaten no food whilst in the underworld. Later, Persephone confessed that she had indeed, eaten some pomegranate seeds. She claimed she had been forced to do this - but nonetheless, this transgression obliged her to divide her time, from then on,between her protective mother and her hypnotic lover. Interestingly though, when she grew older, she returned to the underworld of her own free choice.
Oscar Wilde once said 'I can resist anything... except temptation.'. That's pretty much your own cri de cour at the moment. You're just a sweet, pure well intentioned harmless thing, to and around whom the most outrageous, wicked or shocking things keep 'happening'.
If the wrong kind of men, or the wrong kinds of opportunity keep hurling themselves at your feet, it's definitely not because you are in any way inviting them to. All your problems are either someone else's fault - or the result of wicked circumstances beyond your control. You're not enjoying the trouble you're in one little bit. That's absolutely not a smirk on your face. It's a grimace. How on earth dare anyone suggest otherwise? Maybe, just maybe, you're prepared to concede that you've played some small part in letting your current situation develop as it has done... but then, what choice have you had?
Persephone, the dark Queen of the underworld, is currently at work in your life, naughtily corrupting your normally impeccable judgment and leading you, on what's beginning to seem like a daily basis into ever deeper hot water. There. Don't you feel better already, just for reading that 'excuse'?
The truth is though, that you do have the right to resist her - and the power to do so to. The thing is, secretly, you're not so sure you want to. If you didn't think so many people would 'disapprove' you'd be quite willing to confess that you're actually rather enjoying much of the drama and intrigue that's currently taking place in your life.
There is, for example, the slight matter of who you're expecting to get a Valentine's card from tomorrow. Actually, he's probably not going to send you a card. He's not that kind of a conventional character. Nor do you want him to send you one anyway - because a) it might create damning evidence of something you'd prefer to keep a very private secret and b) you already know just how far you've got him wrapped around your little finger and you don't need that kind of proof.
Best then, for the sake of your virtuous reputation, that you come the raw prawn. After all, it seems to be working a treat so far. You've got all sorts of people, tying themselves up in all sorts of knots in an urgent attempt to help you out of the mess they feel you've got yourself in. The trouble is though, they don't know the half of it and you don't intend to tell them the rest.
They'd be shocked!
Needless to say, none of this bodes well for the future health of a key 'official' relationship. Even if your little secret has nothing to do with another man, it certainly isn't the kind of thing that you can really tell your sweet, kind and totally trusting current companion about.
Assuming, of course, that your companion is sweet and kind. Another variation of the Persephone syndrome involves the tendency to find yourself embroiled with a partner who makes Atilla the Hun look like Postman Pat. This of course, is not your fault either. He wasn't like that when you first got together. We wonder why!
If you're still reading, there's hope. The very fact that you are still reading suggests you're ready to do something constructive. I have been a little harsh on you. It's really NOT all your fault. But half of it is. A proper recovery from the confusion and turmoil you're now caught up in IS possible. But only if you are honest enough to take your half of the responsibility for having caused it in the first place. Only half mind you. Yet another variation on the Perspephone syndrome involves not so much wallowing as fully luxuriating in guilt. You allow yourself to feel so bad, you grow quite convinced that nothing you do can possibly come to any good. That won't wash either. And nor will simply waiting till Persephone becomes less of a dominant influence. Like a stubborn stain that ordinary soap just won't shift, you'll wear her mark until you come completely clean, with yourself and everyone else who matters to you, about everything. YES. Everything.
Hera, known to the Romans as Juno, was the goddess of Marriage. She had big beautiful eyes - purportedly with which to watch errant husbands like a hawk. She is traditionally linked to cows, lilies and peacock feathers (because of the 'eyes' on their tail feathers). Cosmically, she is associated with the Milky Way. Because, back in ancient times, just as now, marriage was always a difficult business, Hera is associated with both the joyous hope of happy union - and the agony of marital dispute.
Hera, like her sister Hestia, was a child of Rhea and the mighty Cronos. Legend has it that her father swallowed her as soon as she was born - and regurgitated her later as young girl. We can perhaps translate this as having had an extremely close bond with her father - which may explain why she grew up to be so determined to stand by her man.
Hera grew up to be courted by the mighty Zeus - but she refused to be seduced by him and insisted on marriage. In the end, he gave in... and the honeymoon lasted 300 years... though the next few hundred were not always so sweet. Eventually, as with so many women who live for the ideal of marriage and can't quite adapt to the reality of it, she began to feel her husband had ruined her life!
There's got to be some way to fulfill your dream of a perfect relationship. Because you're under the influence of Hera, the marriage goddess, you're half dreading and half hopefully dreaming of Valentine's Day. In your nightmare, he (and you already know exactly who HE is) gets a card from HER. (you're pretty sure you know who SHE is too). He thinks you don't know - but you're not so easily fooled. The lack of hard evidence hardly counts. She's probably left her card in a secret, pre-arranged place. He's probably done the same with his gift for her. You refuse to be taken for a fool - though in another way, you cant stop hoping that you are a fool and that it actually is all in your mind. Just in case, you won't give up completely on him... or, at least, not yet.
This brings us on to your hopeful dream. Tomorrow, he's going to make the gesture that proves he really cares. He's going to say the one thing, make the one move - or suggest the one idea that lets you know he really does listen - and that he wants you more than he wants any other woman in the world. After all, you and he were born to be together. That's why you fell for him in the first place. It can surely only be a matter of time before the two of you stop falling out or failing to communicate clearly and start living in the blissful, idyllic world of perfect understanding and trust that so you yearn to experience. And, considering how much time (and effort, and sacrifice and compromise) you have already given this relationship, it's all simply GOT to start happening any day now. Hasn't it?
Er... Well maybe. And maybe not. It depends, not on him... but on you. You've got to stop seeing yourself as a victim of circumstance or a helpless puppet in the hands of your man. You've got to stop wondering and worrying about 'her' (whoever she is, if she exists at all) and start deciding that you're the most beautiful gorgeous desirable woman in the universe. You are, indeed, so lovely that, if he actually IS daft enough to spurn you, your life will be filled in seconds flat, by hundreds of other admirers. Actually you DO know this already.
It's just that you've gone and got it into your head that, as none of those are HIM, they're all no good to you. This may be a slightly better excuse for martyrdom if 'HE' actually is someone you've already given years of dedication to but it's still an excuse. So too, is your concern for the future of the kids, the pets, the house, the bills or the business. All these will, actually, ultimately be just fine whether you stay together or move apart. But you'll be left without a reason to suffer, without all those annoying habits of his to contend with - and without all those totally unsatisfactory conversations to hold. And then, where will you be?
I say this so confidently because psychologists know that whenever the spirit of Hera gets a grip on a woman, she can think of nothing else but her relationship - regardless of how long it's been going on. You'll notice, if you read the other goddess interpretations in this feature, that they all have a little section dedicated to single readers. You won't find one here because nobody under Hera's influence ever IS single. Even the ones who 'look like they are' are yearning to be with one person so badly that they're practically having the relationship already... or hanging on so tight to their last partner that it might as well not be over.
It's not healthy but the good news is... it's not going to last. You're not going to let it, no matter how long it's been going on. Nor, once you do grow out of this phase, are you ever going to be daft enough to get yourself into a quite such an emotional, needy pickle again. You don't even have to wait till Hera's influence diminishes. Instead, you simply need to summon another goddess to your aid. Read, please, the pieces here today about Athena and Artemis. Decide which one you can most relate to and determine to take a leaf out of her book. If you really can't find the courage, emulate Hestia. But don't assume there's any mileage to be had in becoming more like Demeter or, worse, Persephone. They're not your key to success. Even Aphrodite isn't your key. You do need to become sexier... but you'll automatically do that, the moment you make up your mind to be much more self possessed.
Hestia, known to the Romans as Vesta, was the goddess of the hearth and temple. Unlike all the other goddesses, she was traditionally never depicted in female form. She was a 'presence', a feeling; a spirit of warmth and protection.
Though Hestia was a prominent goddess, daughter of the powerful Cronos, there are few legends about her. She is not so much a figure of mystery as an expression of such a simple, beautiful, essential energy that no great complex tale needs to be told to explain it. Hestia represents purity and sincerity, sanctity and safety. Those who come under her influence get the greatest blessing of all; a straightforward, contented life.
Though Hestia was a symbol of celibacy (her roman equivalent, Vesta, was the goddess who governed 'vestal virgins') legend tells that both Apollo the Sun God and Poseidon (the sea god) fell in love with her. To be influenced by Hestia certainly doesn't guarantee a 'U Certificate' Life - but it certainly points to a desire to place spirituality above sensuality.
All you want, right now, is a quiet life. You've got a host of personal projects that you want to pursue in peace. You want a chance to sit quietly, be still and 'find yourself'. You also want a break from the dramas and traumas which, sadly tend to be so much part and parcel of daily life in this modern world. And no, you really don't want romance - or at least not romance in the superficial, exciting sense of the word. Candlelight, you're quite happy to enjoy. You are, after all being influenced by the goddess of fire. Flowers too, you'll willingly welcome. Hestia's home-making influence extends to a deep appreciation of all things natural and earthy. Anyone intending however, to sweep you away in a private jet to a sun kissed tropical island can hop right back in their plane and find some far more lightheaded lady to take instead. You wish her luck. What you want, far more than that, is just to stay in a familiar place and feel comfortable. It's not that you're in an unadventurous mood. It's more that the journey you're currently keen to undertake is one of inner exploration. You want to meditate or practice yoga - or slowly tend your garden.
And do you want to do this WITH anyone? Only if that person is as committed as you are, to a simple, steady way of being. If there's a man in your world who is currently in the midst of some major adventure or stressful saga, he can certainly count on your for support and gentle re-assurance - but he'd better not be expecting you to get as worked up about it all as he is. You're quite prepared to talk things though - indeed you relish the intellectual challenge of solving people's problems, crossword puzzle style, from a detached distance. You're also prepared, indeed more than willing to empathize deeply with those you care for and even strangers. As soon though, as you actively step into their world, you lose the ability to lead a placid, self contained existence in your own.
The same 'refusal to be drawn' is the reason why you're not likely to end any existing relationship, no matter how unsatisfactory, while Hestia is your guardian. Nor though are you going to suffer or set about trying to solve a hopeless problem. You're simply going to retreat into your shell, occupy yourself as productively possible and see what happens when a little more time has passed. In so far as this can hardly be anything other than a wise course, it's sure to bring the best result. But then, Hestia never leads anyone to follow anything other than a sensible plan.
And if you're currently single?.What you really need right now is a bright, witty man with a deep understanding of life's more complex spiritual and psychological aspects. He needs to be successful (not necessarily in the financial sense though you do find 'wheeler dealer types strangely attractive') and most importantly, he needs a great sense of humor. There's no guarantee that you'll change your status over the next few months at least... but if you do, you can be sure that the person you're getting involved with is a genuinely compatible partner. Hestia won't let you fall for anyone else. And if there's no such candidate in the offing? Hestia will keep you so still, comforted and self possessed that frankly, you really neither mind nor care.
Aphrodite, known to the Romans as Venus, is the goddess who needs no introduction. We only have to hear her name to see, in our mind's eye, a vision of total loveliness in a seductive state of undress. Aphrodite is though, far more than just a siren. She is a goddess of doves, swans, roses, apples, arts, crafts and all things graceful, inspired and creative.
Boticelli's Birth of Venus, commonly called 'Venus on the half shell' accurately reflects the myth of Aphrodite. She emerged as a nymph from the waves and immediately drove almost every male god wild with desire. A half sister of Hestia and Hera, her father was Cronos and her mother (depending on whether you believe the poet Homer or Hesiod) was either a sea nymph or a daughter of a rather complicated act of union with the ocean itself!
Aphrodite was very much a free goddess. She suffered no great traumas nor did she ever feel obliged, for long, to restrain her appetites - which by all accounts, were as impressive as her looks. It is wrong to take all this too literally and judge her as amoral. Her free and easy lifestyle is far more appropriately interpreted as a symbol of the way in which the passion and fulfillment of artistic creativity is eternally available to everyone!
If you're not currently having the time of your life... you can expect it to commence any day now. The goddess of love and beauty is at work in your life - and soon, your world is never going to be quite the same again. You don't consider yourself beautiful? You're all too painfully conscious of certain 'imperfections' in your appearance? Think again. We are not talking here about the kind of artificial, skin deep beauty that make up artists excel at. Regardless of your shape or size, you're beginning to exude a magnetic charisma which, if you allow it to express itself fully, will make you more attractive than any Supermodel and a more desirable conquest, in the eyes of most men, than all five Spice Girls in one fell swoop.
A conquest however, is the one thing you're most definitely not going to be. Nobody, but nobody, ever talks Aphrodite into anything she doesn't want to do. Nor do they attain her love by playing on her weaker emotions - like guilt or sympathy. Indeed, if you're a man reading this about your partner and you want a red hot tip, resist like crazy that urge to fall at her feet, smarten up your act and start playing 'just slightly harder to get' double quick. Don't be too elusive... and don't insult her intelligence by making a promise you can't fulfill but do be yourself and show some respect for her strength and judgment. Single women under the influence of Aphrodite are willing to be 'invited' but determined not to be manipulated. They'll go, not necessarily for the most handsome man in town, but for the one with the most talent, wit, charm and joie de vivre. And they'll get him. Every time.
Women in a committed partnership however, can have a problem when Aphrodite reaches into their lives. They fall deeply in love with the notion of freedom and may, or may not become unable to resist the urge to claim that freedom. This depends, not on the history of the relationship or even on its potential for long term compatibility - but on the willingness of the male to respond to the challenge, stop taking his wife for granted and treat her like a new found mate, all over again.
While Aphrodite is the dominant influence on your life, you can expect to feel 'red hot' and highly wanted, almost all the time. You're bound to want to flirt and, as you're guaranteed to remain in control of the consequences, there's really no reason why you shouldn't. Other perhaps, than the paranoia of your partner. If there's the slightest chance that he'll have that reaction, show him this article and remind him of one crucial point. He's only in danger of losing you if he starts to panic about losing you and thus tries to hem you in during the one phase of your life during which you most need to feel free. He can do better than that. And, if you encourage him, he will!
Keywords: goddess freya greek selene primordial goddess goddess night goddess ishtar tammuz goddess hera deities witches dark goddess mathematicall praeface elements louise abrahams witchs craft southern notes version
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