God Pan  

Posted by Stella Clark

God Pan Cover
PAN, god of woods, fields, and fertility, was the son of Hermes, messenger of the gods, and a nymph. Part animal, with the horns, hoofs, and ears of a goat, he was a rollicking deity, the god of the shepherds and the goatherds. A wonderful musician, he accompanied, with his pipe of reeds, the woodland nymphs when they danced. He invented this pipe when the nymph Syrinx, whom he was pursuing, was transformed into a bed of reeds to escape him; Pan then took reeds of unequal length and played on them. The god was always wooing one of the nymphs by playing on his pipes, but was always rejected because of his ugliness. Pan's haunts were the mountains and caves and all wild places, but his favorite spot was Arcady, where he was born.

The word panic is supposed to have been derived from the fears of travelers who heard the sound of his pipes at night in the wilderness.

Further reading (free e-books):

Aleister Crowley - Hymn To Pan
Aleister Crowley - To Man

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Tepoztecatl  

Posted by Stella Clark

Tepoztecatl Cover
In Aztec mythology, Tepoztecatl (or Tezcatzontecatl) was the god of pulque, of drunkenness and fertility. He is a consorts of Mayahuel, who is a mask-avatar of Xochiquetzal.According to the myth, Tepoztecatl was one of the four hundred children of Mayahuel and the god Pantecatl. As a deity of pulque, Tepoztecatl was associated with fertility cults and belong to the Tlaloque (see Tlaloc).In the Tepozteco mountain is the Tepozteco archaeological site, named after Tepoztecatl. The site was, thus, a sacred place for pilgrims from as far as Chiapas and Guatemala. This site has a monument for Tepoztecatl, called the Tepozteco House, a pyramid built on a platform 9.5 meters high.

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Baba Yaga The Black Goddess An Essay  

Posted by Stella Clark

Baba Yaga The Black Goddess An Essay Image
For those of you who enjoy a more scholarly approach to the goddess, here is an essay by an anonymous author about Baba Yaga, the Black Goddess, and what her mythology represents" Yaga and her Magical "I have been thinking and thinking about the image and story of Baba Yaga now for months and wondering how girls and women can resolve the seemingly paradoxical story of a bony heartless witch with the image of innocence of a rejected and abandoned girl. The following essay outlines how we use myth and story to perpetuate unconscious mindsets and it also unveils the gifts that these stories unfold in our inner psyche.

The story of Baba Yaga is prime among many images of the Black Goddess. The Black Goddess is at the heart of all creative processes and cannot be so easily viewed. Men and women rarely approach her, except in fear. Women are learning of her through the strength and boldness of elder women who are not afraid to unveil her many faces.

Sofia as wisdom lies waiting to be discovered within the Black Goddess who is her mirror image. Knowing that, until we make that important recognition, we are going to have to face the hidden and rejected images of ourselves again and again.

As women, we are confronted throughout our lives with unavoidable body messages regarding the uniqueness of our form and the inevitable changes that characterize aging and the passage of time. Although aging presents difficult challenges for both men and women, women confront some specific difficulties because of their gender. In traditional narratives, the end of biological fertility has relegated women to the status of "old women" who are stereotypically viewed as poor, powerless, and pitiful in our sexist and youth oriented culture. Baba Yaga, often referred to as the Black Goddess, and Vasalisa, often representing Sophia, are intrinsic to the psyche of girls and women because they shows us that the illusion of form can hide wonderful qualities within.

Baba Yaga, ugly, haglike, flying in her mortar,

seemingly isolated and abandoned,

yet broom at hand, ready to sweep the clouds across the skies

and reveal her hidden cosmic nature

One of the cruelest of stereotypes that older women face is the "menopausal woman." These are accentuated by the very fact that younger women are often rejecting or distancing to older women in society, unwilling to identify with women older than themselves. These experiences are painful confirmations that the aging woman no longer meets the social criteria of a physically and securely attractive woman. The common result for most women is the activation of shame -- as if becoming/looking older means that something is deeply and truly wrong with oneself.

Conscious femininity is a cyclic process and involves an awakened awareness of the triple form of the Goddess - Mother, Virgin and Crone - and how she exists simultaneously and continuously in all of our psyches, each taking center stage in awareness at different moments. These archetypal patterns are considered intrapsychic modes of consciousness in the individual, and the primordial image of a powerful and integrated woman, crowned with wisdom gleaned through real experience, is again reemerging through both the individual and collective psyches of humanity.

First, however, women must learn to embrace, respect and honor their changing bodies, abilities, capacities and WISDOM. We can learn a lot from Baba Yaga!

An archetype is a universal symbol, an inherited mental image to which humankind responds, and which is often acted upon as an unconscious reaction to human experience. These stories are no different and the story of Baba Yaga exemplify this phenomena.

The female experience is symbolized by and archetypally corresponds with the ancient Triple Goddess as the creator and destroyer of all life -- "the ancient and venerable female divinity embodying the whole of female experience as Virgin, Mother, Crone." The archetypal figure representing the end of a woman's childbearing years, or the "third age" for women, is the third aspect of the Triple Goddess, the Crone.

At the climacteric or menopause, women are often forced to stand precipitously between the culmination of past experiences, to realize that youth is left behind, and prepare a new space within whereby a fresh image will coalesce as she envisions her future. This is real labor. The traditional constructs that are available to women are largely influenced by patriarchal standards of youth and beauty and we need fresh constructs that honor the diversity of life in all of its forms.

When a culture's language has no word to connote "wise elder woman," what happens to the women who carry the "Grandmother" consciousness for the collective? Prejudicial (prejudged) attacks throughout history against older women symbolized patriarchy's feminization of fear: the ultimate fear of annihilation, to be nonexistent (no existence). Centuries-long indoctrination limits our imagination so that we see this ancient aspect of the feminine only in her negative forms. We see her as the one who brings death to our old way of being, to our lives as we have known them, and to our embodied selves.

Our fear of the unconscious makes the Crone or Baba into an image of evil. The prevalence of paranoid masochism finds its expression through feminine perversion. Kristeva writes from " Stabat Matar " that: "Feminine perversion is coiled up in the desire for law as desire for reproduction and continuity, it promotes feminine masochism to the rank of structure stabilizer." Structure stabilizer! Natural death is to be feared, hidden away, certainly not recognized as part of the natural rhythm of cycles of birth, death and rebirth?

Only when death becomes projected does it become a monster to be feared. There is an unconscious belief that a woman who has outlived her husband has somehow used up his life force. Walker claims that the secret hidden in the depths of men's minds is that images of women are often identified with death. Women have also bought into this mindset largely because of lost connection with their own spirituality and the natural cycles of nature" Approaching the Hut of Baba "To be sent to Baba Yaga was tantamount to being sent to one's death, but Vasalisa was actually helped by Baba Yaga. By facing her own worst fear -- death itself, Vasalisa became liberated from her previous situation and immaturity.

The myths of our society tell us much about the attitudes and world view of the myth-owners, and these attitudes are the products of women's roles within the wider society. Myth arises out of the collective level of humankind's experience, which is presented through images and symbols that resonate within our psyche. It is something we inherit from our ancestors and it is expressed through our genetic, racial memory. Kaufert reminds us however, that "myth is a system of values presented as if it were a system of facts."

The symbol of the Crone is unique to a feminine worldview where the face of the Virgin and the fecund Mother, the Virgin Mother Mary, was absorbed in Western tradition into Judeo-Christian imagery. Likewise, we see the image of Vasalisa embodied as this innocence. The Crone has retained much of her pre-patriarchial character where she has haunted the fringes of Western culture, largely ignored, unacknowledged and rejected; one that often strikes fear into the hearts of men and some women because she has tremendous power and cannot be confined.

"Wise women," in the past, were literally seen as having the power of life and death. They symbolized maturity, authority, attuned to nature and instinct. They were women whom men could not bind by making pregnant. They personified, as Hall writes:

"That aspect of life that men would most like to control but against which they are powerless: death. The Crone was healer, seer, medicine woman and, when death arrived with inexorable certainty, she was the mid-wife for the transition to another life." Yaga's Hut standing on its magical Chicken-Leg,

yet revolving like the solar symbol it is,

always rising the withered old hag, the witch. Ironically, the word "Hag" used to mean "holy one" from the Greek hadia, as in hagiolatry, "worship of saints." And during the middle ages hag was said to mean the same as fairy.

In deconstructing these familiar images of the older aging woman, we must first identify their symbolic roots and challenge them in order to allow for potent, vital images that energize women's potential creative spiritual evolution. In this quest it is crucial to find valued female images that present creative and spiritual power, that offer a paradigm of ongoing formation and integration. If we do not do so, we risk encountering images of women that reinforce stereotypical models and moreover, can only alienate us from our own truest selves.

The Crone is a figure who incorporates both dark and light, life and death, creation and destruction, form and dissolution. The doll [Vasalisa's doll, given to her by her dying mother] becomes the symbol of the Sibyl, a figure of inspiration and intuition. She acts as a guide through the great passages of life, leading a woman into her own inner knowing" it synthesizes and looks at the overall pattern; it is logical but empathetic, and combines acute observation with intuition. It is relational (taking account of the past in order to project forward into the future), and it arises out of care and concern for man and womankind. It uses both the left and right brain modes of thought. It is creative and concerned with vision and solutions -- attributes which are an integral part of the Wise Woman."

Sophia plays, hides, adepts, disguises, and brings justice. Interestingly, we see these very same qualities attributed to the wise woman as being Vasalisa's, only not fully formed. Thus affirming the feminist perspective of the Goddess in all of her aspects and that all ways to wisdom are valid paths. Girls and women are encouraged to rely on their own subjective experience or on the communal experience of other women This is a very important point!

From a feminist perspective, the entry into the third phase of women's life is seen as a time of spiritual questing, renewal and self-development. It is a time where women are encouraged to explore themselves through interaction with other females who are providers of friendship, support, love, even sexual satisfaction, rather than a woman's family" Yaga helping young "Likewise, the young girl growing into maidenhood needs the guidance and wisdom that elder women can provide. She must receive the gifts that the wise ones can give her. Baba Yaga may appear as a witch, yet she is instrumental in folk traditions. She aids heroes to find weapons, simplifying tasks and quests when she is treated with courtesy. Her transposed reflection is none other than Vasilisa the fair - the young righteous maiden who defeats her opposite aspect by truth and integrity.

The older woman is the keeper of the wisdom and tradition in her family, clan, tribe, and community. She is the keeper of relations, whether they be interpersonal or with all of nature. Every issue is an issue of relationship. It is assumed that she has a deep understanding of the two great mysteries, birth and death.

Another quality is the ability to be mediator between the world of spirit and earth. She is emancipated from traditional female roles of mothering and is free to make a commitment to the greater community. As a result of this freedom, there is an abundance of creativity unleashed in this phase of life; often expressed through art, poetry, song, dance, and crafts, and through her sexuality as she celebrates her joy (Joussance).

This elder time must again become a stage of life revered and honored by others and used powerfully in service by women themselves. The elder "Wise-woman" can represent precisely the kind of power women so desperately need today, and do not have: the power to force the hand of the ruling elite to do what is right, for the benefit of future generations and of the earth itself.

A powerful Baba Yaga, flying in her mortar,

protecting her forests, and banishing all obstacles with her pestle and broom.

Like Baba Yaga, the Crone must help us by her example and "admonish us to revere all peoples and all circles of life upon this earth... not only important for the dignity and self-esteem of each woman, but vital for the countenance of life on our sweet Mother Earth." Since men define power as the capacity to destroy, the Destroying Mother Crone must be the most powerful female image for them, therefore, the only one likely to force them (us) in any new direction.

A woman who denies her life process at any time in her development, clinging desperately to outmoded images, myths and rituals of her past, obscures her connection with Self, the Divine, and therefore, with her spiritual heritage, the natural universe. The same holds true for our daughters, maidens who are coming of age. There is a kind of internal balance and sense of holiness available to us when we accept ourselves as part of a world that honors cycles, changes, decay and rebirth. It is time for women to reflect and give form to the authentic self in its evolving, formative process.

The woman who is willing to make that change must become pregnant with herself, at last. She must bear herself, her third self, her old age with labor. There are not many who will help her with that birth. To Crone is to birth oneself as "Wise-woman," and see the world through new eyes.

We have not had the safety valve of feminine metaphor in our spiritual understanding; consequently, the Feminine, both Divine and human, have appeared monstrously contorted, threatening and uncontrollable.

The Black Goddess lies at the basis of Spiritual knowing, which is why her image continuously appears within many traditions as the Veiled Goddess, the Black Virgin, the Outcast Daughter, the Wailing Widow, the Dark Woman of Knowledge.

The way of Sophia is the way of personal experience. It takes us into the realm of "magical reality," those areas of our lives where extraordinary vocational and creative skills are called upon to manifest. Those treasures of Baba Yaga and Vasalisa lie deep within each of us, waiting to be discovered.

Baba Yaga & Vasalisa,

Crone & Puella [Maiden]: Two Aspects of One Archetype

(Note: James Hillman argues that the Senex and Puer, or Sage and Youth,

are also two aspects of a single archetype --

that of humankind's ever-shifting relationship with Time
)

Author of this article is unknown.



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Mictlantecihuatl  

Posted by Stella Clark

Mictlantecihuatl Cover
In Aztec mythology, Mictecacihuatl was the Queen of Mictlan, the underworld, and wife of Mictlantecuhtli. Her purpose is to keep watch over the bones of the dead. She presides over the festivals of the dead (which evolved into the modern Day of the Dead) and is known as the Lady of the Dead, since it is believed she died at birth.Her cult is sometimes held to persist in the common Mexican worship of Santa Muerte.

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Pazuzu  

Posted by Stella Clark

Pazuzu Cover
I'd make a joke about Pazuzu's petals, but you young'uns would probably miss it. Make sure you watch A Wonderful Life to get it. Anyhow long before he became famous in The Exorcist this dude really existed. His statues tended to be a bit more fierce though.

He is the god, some say demon of the southwest wind. He brings famine or locusts as it pleases him, to destroy crops. Oddly enough even though he is seen as evil, he will attack any evil entity that harms a person under his care.

Which helps us dig up his real story. He really was and is a god who loved and loves humans. He so despises the demonessLamashtu, who steals babies that he pressed her back into the underworld. So yes, he'd be a super child protector as he loves kids. That his fierce winds can destroy crops is true, but then most gods have a darker side that favors destruction. Plus, blaming nature on the gods and not thinking ahead seems to be the norm for humans.

In appearance he is partly human with double wings, a dog's head, and taloned eagle's feet, all finished off with a scorpion's tail. He also has scales and in place of a real member, a snake-headed one. Many ancient women wore his amulet to protect their unborn babies and hung charms of him around the house so the children would be safe.

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Goddess Tlachtga  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Tlachtga Image
TLACHTGA (pronounced CLACK-da) is the Irish Goddess of Druid magic. She travelled extensively with her father, the blind Druid Mog Ruith of Munster. While they were in Italy, she was raped by the three sons of her father's mentor, Simon Magus. That fall, at the time of the Samhain festival, Tlachtga gave birth to three sons, Doirb, Cumma and Muach, on a hill in County Meath and died in the process. She was buried on the hill, and it became the center of Celtic Samhain celebrations after her death. Tlachtga's name, which means "earth spear," is also seen as TLACHTA.

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Goddess Rafu Sen  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Rafu Sen Image
RAFU-SEN is the Japanese Goddess of plum blossoms. She is portrayed as a maiden who wanders in the forest at night, with the scent of the blossoms surrounding her. Her name, which means "buoyant subtlety," is also seen as RAFUSNE.

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Goddess Prithvi  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Prithvi Image
PRITHVI is the Hindu Goddess of the Earth. She is the consort of Dyaus, God of the Sky, and the mother of Indra. In one myth, a demon took Prithvi to the bottom of the cosmic ocean and held her captive there. Varaha, an avatar of the God Vishnu in the form of a boar, rescued her and restored her to her rightful place (that's her on his shoulder in the picture). Prithvi sometimes takes the form of a cow, and the first milk from every cow is offered to her. Her name means "earth," and is also seen as PRTHVI or PRTHIVI. Other names include DHRA, DHARTI, DHRITHRI (that which holds everything), PRITHVI TATTWA (the essence of the element earth), and PRITHVI MATA (Mother Earth).

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Greek Naiad Aigina  

Posted by Stella Clark

Greek Naiad Aigina Cover
AIGINA (pronounced AY-gih-na) is one of the Greek Naiades. The Naiades were generally thought to be daughters of an Okeanid mother (the 3000 daughters of Tethys and Okeanos, Goddesses of fresh water sources) and a Potamoi father (the 3000 sons of Tethys and Okeanos, Gods of the rivers); in Aigina's case, her father was Asopos, God of the River Asopos in Boeotia, but her mother Metope was another Naiad. Aigina happened to catch the eye of Zeus, who abducted her and took her to an island named Oinone. She had a son named Aiakos, and he became the king of the island, renaming it Aigina after his mother. Aigina had another son, Menoitios, by the mortal Aktor, and through her two sons she was related to two of the main characters in Homer's "Iliad"--Akhilleus (son of Peleus, son of Aiakos) and Patroklos (son of Menoitios). Aigina's name is also seen as AEGINA.

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Meng Po Goddess Of Wine And The Afterworld  

Posted by Stella Clark

Meng Po Goddess Of Wine And The Afterworld Image
IN CHINESE MYTHOLOGY, "MENG PO" IS THE "GODDESS OF WINE AND THE AFTERWORLD." IT IS HER TASK TO STAND AT THE EXIT OF THE "AFTERWORLD" AND GIVES THE SOULS ABOUT TO BE REINCARNATED THE "BROTH OF OBLIVION", A WINE POTION THAT MAKES THEM FORGET EVERYTHING THAT HAPPENED TO THEM IN THE PREVIOUS EXISTENCE, EXCEPT FOR PAIN. MENG PO" POTION IS MADE FROM HERBS COLLECTED FROM VARIOUS EARTHLY PONDS AND STREAMS. THE BREW INDUCES INSTANT AND PERMANENT AMNESIA...AND ALL MEMORY OF THEIR PAST LIVES IS LOST, AND THAT IS WHY PEOPLE COME INTO THIS WORLD WITH NO MEMORY OF ANYTHING FROM THE PREVIOUS LIVES AND ARE FASCINATED BY FAME, FORTUNE, AND SENTIMENTALITIES OF THIS MUNDANE WORLD.

IT IS A WINE-LIKE POTION WHICH HAS FIVE FLAVORS: SWEET, BITTER, ACRID, SALTY, AND SOUR. ANYONE WHO WANTS TO REINCARNATE HAS TO DRINK THIS POTION. FOR SOULS WHO REFUSE TO DRINK AND TRY TO RUN AWAY, A PAIR OF HOOKS WILL APPEAR IMMEDIATELY FROM BELOW TO HOLD THE FEET AND A SHARP BRASS TUBE WILL PIERCE THEIR THROAT AND FORCE THEM TO DRINK THE POTION. HAVING BEEN PURGED OF ALL PREVIOUS SINS AND KNOWLEDGE, THE DEAD SPIRIT IS SENT TO BE REBORN IN A NEW EARTHLY INCARNATION, AND THE CYCLE BEGINS AGAIN. OCCASIONALLY PEOPLE ARE ABLE TO AVOID DRINKING THE BREW; HENCE, WE HEAR TALES OF PAST LIFE MEMORIES SURFACING IN CHILDREN.

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Goddess Ot  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Ot Image
OT is the Mongolian Goddess of fire and the home. Traditionally, the Mongolian people lived in yurts which had a hearth at their center, and it was in this hearth that Ot resided, protecting the inhabitants of the home as long as they obeyed her customs. At each meal, an offering of oil or wine was made to Ot, increasing her fire. Several things would anger the Goddess and cause her to withdraw her favor from the family, such as putting something into the fire that would cause a foul smell as it burned and pointing a weapon at the fire. The worst transgression was pouring water on the fire, as this threatened to drive the Goddess from the home permanently. Ot's name, which means "fire," is also seen as UT.

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Goddess Sekhmet  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Sekhmet Image
SEKHMET is the most important of the Egyptian lioness Goddesses. She has two distinct aspects to her personality-one dangerous and destructive, and the other protective and healing. Her name means "the female powerful one", and she is a daughter of the sun God Re. Sekhmet was said to breath fire and could also send plagues to the king's enemies. However, in her protective role, she had the power to ward off plagues and pestilence, gaining her the epithet "MISTRESS OF LIFE". Her priests participated in the magical side of medicine, offering prayers over the sick and performing rites to combat epidemics. Sekhmet is usually depicted as a lioness-headed woman, wearing a long wig with a solar disk on top of her head, symbolizing her relation to Re. Other epithets associated with her are "SMITER OF THE NUBIANS" (in her military role) and "MISTRESS OF RED LINEN" (her dress was usually shown as being colored red).

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Goddess Diana  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Diana Image
Diana is a very old deity wand was believed to once have been a spirit of the woods and wildlife. In Roman mythology, She was the virgin goddess of hunting, of the fields and forests, and of fertility and childbirth. Although, she was very popular with women. She was also highly esteemed by the men. As the Goddess of the Chase, Diana was the great protectress of the wild beasts; She was often portrayed as a hunter, carrying a bow and arrows as in the picture above. Later, She was also a Crescent Moon Goddess and is sometimes depicted wearing a crescent moon over Her head. Ironically, though a fertility goddess, She remains a virgin. Her father, Zeus, granted Her the gift of eternal chastity.

Diana remains with us today as the 'call of the wild' which guides us back to our roots in nature. Her presence tells us that it is okay if we let our animal essence out once awhile... to feel the wind in our hair... to dance and sing under the Moon...or to throw off our clothes and swim in a creek. Diana is with us when gaze upon the stars in wonderment. To honor Diana, find a special place in or near your home that you can call your own sacred grove to Diana. Pray to Her that you will never forget the great wonder of creation. Treasure the joy of just being alive. And, if you are an urbanite as I am, you can pray to Her when you need Her strength to survive the wild city life or when just want to find the peace that comes from nature within you.

Offerings to Diana can be flowers, plants, jasmine, lavendar, rosmary, wheat, barley, beans, milk or honey.

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Goddess Idunn  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Idunn Image
"IIDUNN" IS THE NORSE GODDESS OF ETERNAL YOUTH. HER NAME MEANS "THE REJUVENATING ONE." IN SCANDINAVIA, SHE IS THE GODDESS OF THE GOLDEN APPLES HAT MAINTAINS THE ETERNAL YOUTHFULNESS OF THE GODS. IDUNN IS THE WIFE OF BRAGI, THE POET GOD. WHEN SHE FIRST APPEARED IN ASGARD WITH BRAGI, THE GODS WARMLY WELCOMED HER, AND TO WIN THEIR AFFECTIONS, SHE PROMISED THEM A DAILY TASTE OF HER PRECIOUS APPLES WHICH SHE TREASURED AND KEPT IN A MAGICAL CASKET. IN FACT, NO MATTER HOW MANY SHE DREW OUT, ALWAYS THE SAME NUMBER REMAINED.

SHE IS THE PERSONIFICATION OF SPRING OR IMMORTAL YOUTH, WHO, ACCORDING TO SOME MYTHOLOGIES, HAD NO BIRTH AND WOULD NEVER KNOW DEATH.

THERE IS ONE MYTH THAT TELLS OF HER BEING THE BRUNT OF A TRICK BY LOKI, THE TRICKSTER. IT SEEMS THAT HE LED HER TO THE HALL OF A GREAT GIANT WHO IMPRISONED HER WHERE, ALTHOUGH SHE GREW SAD AND PALE, CONTINUED TO REFUSE HIM THE SMALLEST BITE OF A MAGIC APPLE. TIME PASSED BY AND THE GODS BEGAN TO GROW OLD AND STIFF AS THEIR YOUTH AND BEAUTY DISAPPEARED. THE GODS, REALIZING NOW THAT LOKI HAD BEEN BEHIND HER DISAPPEARANCE, SENT FOR HIM AND DEMANDED THAT HE BRING THE GODDESS BACK. LOKI, KNOWING THAT HIS LIFE DEPENDED ON IT, AGREED TO MAKE THE JOURNEY TO BRING BACK THE GODDESS AND HER APPLES. USING A HAWK TO FLY, HE TRAVELED TO THE TO THE CASTLE, AND SAYING SOME MAGIC WORDS, TURNED IDUNN INTO A NUT. HE GRASPED THE NUT BETWEEN HIS CLAWS AND FLEW BACK TO ASGARD. LOKI THEN THREW OFF THE HAWK SKIN, PICKED UP THE NUT, AND SAID THE MAGIC WORDS. IDUNN SPRANG FORTH AMONG THE AGING GODS AND GODDESSES AND OFFERED THEM THE APPLES THAT RESTORED THEIR YOUTH AND BEAUTY.

"THIS MYTH IS OBVIOUSLY DESCRIBED THE CHANGING OF THE SEASONS--WINTER AND SUMMER. IDUNN IS LURED AWAY DURING THE AUTUMN AND THE COLD, WINTRY WIND, THE GREAT GIANT, IMPRISONS HER IN THE FROZEN, BARREN NORTH WHERE SHE CANNOT THRIVE. THEN, LOKI, THE SOUTH WIND BRINGS BACK THE SEED (NUT), THE PRECURSOR OF THE RETURNING SPRING. THE RESTORATION OF THE YOUTH AND BEAUTY OF THE DEITY IS SYMBOLIC OF NATURE'S RESTORATION IN SPRING AFTER THE LONG WINTER'S SLEEP. "

THERE IS ANOTHER NORSE TALE WHICH DESCRIBES IDUNN AS SITTING UPON THE WORLD TREE, YGGDRASILL, AND FALLING OFF HER BRANCH, LANDING INTO THE REALMS OF HEL. SHE FINDS HERSELF UNABLE TO GET BACK UP BECAUSE SHE HAS BECOME VIOLENTLY ILL. BRAGI SEES WHAT HAS HAPPENED AND ATTEMPTS TO RESCUE HIS WIFE, BUT WHEN HE FINDS HER TOO ILL TO BE MOVED, HE WRAPS HER IN A WOLF SKIN AND STAYS WITH HER THROUGHOUT THE MONTHS UNTIL SHE IS WELL ENOUGH TO RETURN.

"IN THIS MYTH, HER FALL FROM THE TREE IS SYMBOLIC OF THE AUTUMN LEAVES AS THEY FALL, LYING LIMP AND HELPLESS ON THE GROUND...EVENTUALLY TO BE COVERED WITH THE SNOW (WOLFSKIN)."

I FIND IT FASCINATING THE WAYS OUR ANCESTORS DESCRIBED THE NATURAL WORLD, THE SEASONS, THE CHANGES OF LIFE...IN WAYS THAT THEY COULD UNDERSTAND AND MAKE SENSE OF WHAT WAS GOING ON AROUND THEM.

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Goddess Nike  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Nike Image
"NIKE" (VICTORY) WAS NAME OF THE GREEK GODDESS OF VICTORY; SHE WAS THE PERSONIFICATION OF VICTORY AND SUCCESS...SPECIFICALLY IN BATTLE AND IN SPORTS. SHE WAS CAPABLE OF RUNNING OR FLYING AT GREAT SPEED, BUT OTHER THAN THIS GREAT SPEED, SHE HAD NO SPECIAL POWERS OF HER OWN. SHE HELPED THE RIGHTFUL TO SUCCEED. NIKE WAS THE DAUGHTER OF THE TITAN GIANT, PALLAS AND THE NAIAD, THE RIVER STYX. SHE IS OFTEN DEPICTED WITH WINGS AND A PALM OF VICTORY IN HER HAND. SHE SAT AT THE SIDE OF ZEUS DURING THE DURATION OF HIS PLIGHT WITH THE TITANS.

SHE WAS A BRINGER OF GOOD LUCK, AND BECAME KNOWN AS THE MEDIATOR OF SUCCESS BETWEEN THE GODS AND MEN NOT ONLY IN WAR, BUT IN ALL OTHER UNDERTAKINGS AS WELL. FREQUENTLY SHE IS SEEN HOVERING WITH OUTSTRETCHED WINGS OVER THE VICTOR IN A COMPETITION. ALTHOUGH SHE WAS A DIVINE BEING, SHE HAD NO SPECIAL TEMPLES OR FESTIVALS AND WAS USUALLY WORSHIPPED IN CONJUNCTION WITH PALLAS ATHENA AND APPEARS MAINLY IN THE COMPANY OF OTHER DEITIES...NOTABLY ZEUS AND PALLAS ATHENA... WHO BOTH HAVE BOTH BEEN DEPICTED CARRYING SMALL FIGURES OF NIKE...INDICATING THAT SHE WAS AN ATTRIBUTE TO BOTH OF THEM. IT WAS BECAUSE SHE PRESIDED OVER ATHLETIC CONTESTS THAT SHE BECAME THE ICON OF THE FOOTWEAR COMPANY.



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Greek Goddess Ceres  

Posted by Stella Clark

Greek Goddess Ceres Image
CERES (pronounced SAIR-eez) is the Roman Goddess of agriculture and motherly love. She is the daughter of Saturn and Ops, and sister to Jupiter, Juno, Neptune, Pluto, and Vesta. She is often identified with the Greek Goddess Demeter, and her daughter Proserpina is identified with Demeter's daughter Persephone. Ceres, whose name means "create", is called on to ensure a plentiful harvest. She is usually portrayed with a basket of flowers or fruit and grain around her neck and in her hair. She is assisted by 12 minor Gods, whose roles comprise the entire process of growing and supplying grain: Vervactor who turns fallow land, Reparator who prepares fallow land, Imporcitor who plows with wide furrows, Insitor who sowed, Obarator who plowed the surface, Occator who harrowed, Sarritor who weeded, Subruncinator who thinned out, Messor who harvested, Conuector who carted, Conditor who stored, and Promitor who distributed.

Epithets for Ceres include FLAVA (golden, the color of grain), FRUGIFERA (bearer of crops), LARGA (abundant), FECUNDA (fecund), FERTILIS (fertile), GENETRIX FRUGUM (progenetress of the crops), MATER (mother), and POTENS FRUGUM (powerful in crops).

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Goddess Cocamama  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Cocamama Image
COCAMAMA is the Incan Goddess of the coca plant. She is one of the daughters of Pachamama, the earth mother. She was originally a Goddess of joy and happiness, and she had many lovers. One of her lovers became jealous of the others and cut Cocamama in half. From her body, the first coca plants grew. Men were only allowed to chew the leaves after they had satisfied their women, in honor of Cocamama. Her name, which means "mother of the coca plant," is also seen as MAMACOCA or COCOMAMA.

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Mut Mother Of The Gods  

Posted by Stella Clark

Mut Mother Of The Gods Image
LITTLE IS KNOWN OF THE ORIGINS OF THIS GODDESS, BUT FROM THE MIDDLE KINGDOM ONWARD, "MUT", WHO REPRESENTS THE PRINCIPLE OF MOTHERHOOD IN ITS PUREST FORM, WAS WORSHIPPED AS THE "MOTHER OF THE GODS". SHE IS THE DIVINE MOTHER AND QUEEN OF THE GODS, AND THE EMBODIMENT OF THE UNIVERSAL MYSTERIES. SHE WAS ONE OF THE VERY FEW "GODDESSES" OF WHOM IT IS DECLARED THAT SHE WAS " NEVER BORN,," IE, THAT SHE WAS SELF-PRODUCED.

"MUT" IS SYMBOLIC OF MATERNAL LOVE AND PROTECTION. SHE TOOK THE FORM OF A SACRED CELESTIAL COW TO FILL THE ROLE OF "QUEEN OF HEAVEN". AT THEBES, SHE BECAME THE CHIEF CONSORT OF THE INVISIBLE ONE," AMUN RA," GOD OF THE AIR, AND THEIR YEARLY MARRIAGE WAS ONE OF THE GREAT ANNUAL CELEBRATIONS. SHE WAS THE MOTHER OF THE MOON GOD, "KHONSU. "

SHE IS REPRESENTED AS A MATURE WOMAN WITH A HEADDRESS IN THE FORM OF A VULTURE SURMOUNTED BY THE CROWNS OF UPPER AND LOWER EGYPT. THE VULTURE AS A HIEROGLYPHIC SIGN MEANS "MUT", OR "MOTHER". SHE IS SOMETIMES SEEN WITH TA SHEEP'S HEAD IN HONOR OF HER HUSBAND, AND IN OTHER PLACES WITH THE VULTURE'S OUTSTRETCHED WINGS GUARDING THE CRADLE OF THE NILE, THE SOURCE OF WHICH IS DEFENDED BY A SERPENT. "MUT" WAS ALSO DEPICTED AT THEBES WITH THE HEAD OF A LIONESS.

IT WAS AT" KARNAK" THAT SHE WAS MAINLY WORSHIPPED, WHERE A BEAUTIFUL TEMPLE WAS BUILT BY "AMENHETEP III " IN HER HONOR. THERE, SHE IS CALLED "THE LADY OF ASHER..."FROM THE NAME OF THAT PART OF THEBES WHERE HER TEMPLE STOOD. AT "LUXOR, "THERE STILL REMAINS A TEMPLE WITH A SACRED LAKE THAT WAS DEDICATED TO THIS GODDESS.

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Goddess Selija  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Selija Image
SELIJA (pronounced sel-IH-ya) is the Lithuanian Goddess of the planet Saturn. She is the last of the daughters of Saule, Goddess of the sun, since Saturn was the last of the planets known to the ancients.

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Song Of The Goddess  

Posted by Stella Clark

Song Of The Goddess Cover
I am the Great Mother, worshipped by all creation and existent prior to their conscious-ness. I am the primal female force, boundless and eternal.

I am the chaste Goddess of the Moon, the Lady of all magick. The winds and moving leaves sing my name. I wear the crescent Moon upon my brow and my feet rest among the starry heavens. I am mysteries yet unsolved, a path newly set upon. I am a field untouched by the plow. Rejoice in me and know the fullness of youth.

I am the blessed Mother, the gracious Lady of the harvest. I am clothed with the deep, cool wonder of the Earth and the gold of the fields heavy with grain. By me the tides of the Earth are ruled; all things come to fruition according to my reason. I am refuge and healing. I am the life-giving Mother, wondrously fertile.

Worship me as the Crone, tender of the unbroken cycle of death and rebirth. I am the wheel, the shadow of the Moon. I rule the tides of women and men and give release and renewal to weary souls. Though the darkness of death is my domain, the joy of birth is my gift.

I am the Goddess of the Moon, the Earth, the Seas. My names and strengths are manifold. I pour forth magick and power, peace and wisdom. I am the eternal Maiden, Mother of all, and Crone of darkness, and I send you blessings of limitless love.

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Goddess Ayisyt  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Ayisyt Image
AMONG THE "YAKUTS", IT IS THE GODDESS OF BIRTH, "AYISYT," WHO BESTOWS FERTILITY ON WOMEN AND WATCHES OVER THEIR CHILDREN. SHE IS THE GENTLE "CREATRIX "GODDESS WHO CAUSES WOMEN TO CONCEIVE, PROTECTS THEM DURING CHILDBIRTH, AND PROVIDES THE NEWBORNS WITH THE LIFE FORCE. IT IS SAID THAT SHE APPEARS BEFORE A PREGNANT WOMAN SEVEN DAYS BEFORE CHILDBIRTH AND FLIES AWAY THREE DAYS AFTER IT. SHE IS DEPICTED AS A WHITE-HAIRED OLD WOMAN WHO SITS BY THE "TREE OF LIFE" AT THE CREST OF THE CENTRAL WORLD MOUNTAIN. ALL-KNOWING, SHE NOT ONLY GIVES NEWLY BORN PEOPLE THEIR LIVES, BUT ALSO DETERMINES THE FATE OF ALL PEOPLE AND EQUIPS THEM WITH THE POTENTIAL TO DO BOTH GOOD AND EVIL.

IN MANY PRAYERS SHE IS REFERRED TO AS "MILK LAKE MOTHER" IN REFERENCE TO THE DIVINE LAKE WHICH SUPPOSEDLY EXISTS BESIDE THE TREE OF LIFE IN THE CENTER OF THE EARTH. AN ENDLESS STREAM OF FOAMY MOISTURE FLOWS FROM THE "TREE" TO THE HOLY "EARTH", FORMING A LAKE OF PURE MILK. ITS LIFE FORCE CAUSES GROWTH, GIVES STRENGTH TO THE WEAK, AND HEALS THE SICK.

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Goddess Qamaits  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Qamaits Image
QAMAITS is the Bella Coola Goddess of war, death, and the beginning. At the beginning of the world, Qamaits did battle with the mountains, which were so high that nothing could survive on them. Qamaits, being a ferocious warrior, conquered the mountains and knocked them down to the size they are today. She then returned to her home in the upper heavens. She rarely visits the earth, but when she does, she causes earthquakes, forest fires, and sickness. She is also referred to as OUR WOMAN and AFRAID-OF-NOTHING.

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Dagon  

Posted by Stella Clark

Dagon Cover
Dagon was originally a fertility god, though once these beliefs adapted to Hebrews he evolved into a major northwest Semitic god, reportedly of fish and/or fishing. He was worshipped by the early Amorites and by the inhabitants of the cities of Ebla (modern Tell Mardikh, Syria) and Ugarit (modern Ras Shamra, Syria) (which was an ancient city near the Mediterranean containing a large variety of ancient writings and pagan shrines). He was also a major member, or perhaps head, of the pantheon of the Biblical Philistines. His name appears in Hebrew as, in Ugaritic as dgn (probably vocalized as Dagnu), and in Akkadian as Dagana, Daguna usually rendered in English translations as Dagan.

Dagon was the god of the Philistines. The idol was represented in the combination of both man and fish. Although there was a deep affection from Dagon's worshippers to their deity, the symbol of a fish in human form was really meant to represent fertility and the vivifying powers of nature and reproduction.

The Babylonians had a myth that a being emerged from the Erythraean Sea who was part man and part fish and thus adopted the deity into their culture in their earliest days in history. Their have also been discoveries of the fish-god in the sculptures found in Nineveh, Assyria.

"When the Philistines took the ark of God, they brought it into the temple of Dagon and set it by Dagon. And when the people of Ashdod arose early in the morning, there was Dagon, fallen on its face to the earth before the ark of the LORD. So they took Dagon and set it in its place again. And when they arose early the next morning, there was Dagon, fallen on its face to the ground before the ark of the LORD. The head of Dagon and both the palms of its hands were broken off on the threshold; only the torso of Dagon was left of it. Therefore neither the priests of Dagon nor any who come into Dagon's house tread on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod to this day."

- 1 Sam 5:2-5: "Now the lords of the Philistines gathered together to offer a great sacrifice to Dagon their god, and to rejoice. And they said: "Our god has delivered into our hands Samson our enemy!" When the people saw him, they praised their god; for they said: "Our god has delivered into our hands our enemy, The destroyer of our land, And the one who multiplied our dead."

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Goddess Zigu Shen  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Zigu Shen Image
ZIGU SHEN is the Chinese Goddess of concubines and latrines. She was born as a peasant and sold to a man named Wei Zixu to be his concubine. Wei's wife Caogu was very cruel to Zigu Shen and forced her to live next to the outdoor latrine. After Caogu beat her to death, she buried her next to the latrine. When the Heavenly Emperor learned of her fate, he turned Zigu Shen into a Goddess, and gave her dominion over the relationship between wives and concubines. He gave her a bow and arrows with which to shoot cruel wives. Zigu Shen was also given dominion over latrines, and was later associated with spirit writing. Her name, which means "purple lady," is also seen as CESHEN, TZU-KU SHEN, KENG SAN GU NIANG (Third Daughter of the Latrine), MAO GU (Lady of the Latrine), and QI FUREN (Lady Qi).

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