Goddess Festival Of Ceres  

Posted by Stella Clark in , , , , ,

Goddess Festival Of Ceres Image
Ceres is the Goddess of agriculture, and was credited with the discovery of spelt wheat, the yoking of oxen and ploughing, the sowing, protection and nourishing of the young seed, and the gift of agriculture to humankind; before this, it was said, man had subsisted on acorns, and wandered without settlement or laws. She was the first to "break open the earth", and all activities of the agricultural cycle were protected by her laws. She held the power to fertilise, multiply and fructify plant and animal seed, whose offspring were the physical incarnations of her power.

Her first plough-furrow opened the earth (Tellus' realm) to the world of men and created the first field and its boundary; she thus determined the course of settled, lawful, civilised life. She mediated between plebeian and patrician factions. She oversaw the transition of women from girlhood to womanhood, from unmarried to married life and motherhood and the growth of children from infancy. Despite her "chthonic" connections to Tellus, she was not, according to "Spaeth", an underworld deity. Rather, she maintained the boundaries between the realms of the living and the dead.

Given the appropriate rites, she would help the deceased into afterlife as an underworld shade ("Di Manes"): otherwise, the spirit of the deceased might remain among the living as a wandering, vengeful ghost.

The goddess was worshiped in many ways. There was the porca praecidanea, which involved sacrificing a fertile female pig and was necessary before a harvest. Cato indicates that sacrifices of any large food item will do, however, and suggests a pumpkin as an acceptable substitute for a pig, since it can be cut open and the seeds offered to Ceres in much the same way the entrails of the pig would be. After the offering of the "porca praecidanea", it was customary to also give the goddess a libation of wine.

The poor could offer wheat, flowers, and a libation. The expectations of afterlife for initiates in the "sacra Cereris" may have been somewhat different, as they were offered "a method of living" and of "dying with better hope".

Ceres' major festival was the Cerealia - the ludi cereales, culminating on April 19 to celebrate the growth of grain and other agricultural products. Its original form is unknown; it may have been founded during the regal era. During the Republican era, it was organised by the "plebeian aediles", and included "ludi circenses" (circus games). These opened with a horse race in the Circus Maximus, whose starting point lay just below the Aventine Temple of Ceres, Liber and Libera. In a nighttime ritual after the race, blazing torches were tied to the tails of live foxes, who were released into the Circus. The origin and purpose of this ritual are unknown; it may have been intended to cleanse the growing crops and protect them from disease and vermin, or to add warmth and vitality to their growth

Religiously, the purpose of the races and the games were to make the goddess favorably disposed toward the Roman people, so that she would give them a good harvest.

Visual depictions of Ceres were largely derived from Greek portrayals of Demeter. On two coin types, a bust of Ceres was pictured on one side, while a yoke of oxen was on the other. On other coins, she wears a crown of grain stalks called a "corona spicea", holds stalks of wheat, and is occasionally pictured with wheat and barley grains. One coin actually portrayed her wearing a modius, an instrument used to measure grain, on her head. Another pictures a bust of series on one side, and a pair of seated male figures with a wheat stalk to their side on the other. The seated men represent the official distribution of grain to the people. Annona, the goddess who personified the wheat supply, appears alongside Ceres on several coins from the imperial period. Reliefs from the Augustan period have even gone so far as to depict her as a plant growing out of the ground. In one her bust emerges from the earth, holding bunches of poppies and grain in her upraised hands while two snakes twine about her arms.

Ceres also assimilated the visual symbols of the Eleusinian Mysteries, which most Romans observed in her name. Ceres is depicted with symbols of the Mysteries, such as riding in a chariot drawn by snakes while holding a torch in her right hand.

Information collected from various sources.


Goddess Marzanna  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Marzanna Image
"MARZANNA IS THE SLAVIC GODDESS OF WINTER. SHE WAS, IN PRE-CHRISTIAN TIMES, ASSOCIATED WITH DEATH, WINTER, AND THE HARVEST. SHE WAS WORSHIPED AS THE MOTHER AND GODDESS OF CORN AND HELD IN VERY SPECIAL REVERENCE. SHE APPEARS AS AN OLD WOMAN DRESSED IN WHITE WHO BECOMES A HAG WHEN WINTER HITS AND SLOWLY DIES OFF. SHE IS SOMETIMES ASSOCIATED WITH WITCHCRAFT AND DIVINATION.

TO INVITE AND WELCOME SPRING, AS WELL AS ARRANGE PROPER FAREWELL FOR WINTER, THE SLAVS WOULD CELEBRATE AND OLD PAGAN CUSTOM KNOWN AS THE "SINKING OF MARZANNA". EACH SPRING AN EFFIGY OF "OLD WOMAN WINTER" MADE FROM SHEAVES OF GRAIN WAS CARRIED THROUGH THE VILLAGE AND THROWN, AMID REJOICING, INTO THE NEAREST RIVER TO BANISH THE COLD OF WINTER AND WELCOME THE WARMTH OF SPRING. THIS DROWNING OF " MARZANNA "IS A REPRESENTATION OF THE SUN'S REBIRTH, HOW IT COMES BACK, IT'S RAYS STRONGER, MELTING SNOW AND BRINGING IN SPRING, LIFE. THIS RITUAL IS STILL DONE TODAY IN CERTAIN RURAL AREAS OF THE SLAVIC COUNTRIES.

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Goddess Hina Ereere Manua  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Hina Ereere Manua Image
HINA-'ERE'ERE-MANU'A is the Tahitian Goddess of tattooing. Her parents, Hina and Ti'i, kept her hidden away, until one day she was spied by the Gods Tu Ra'i Po and Mata Mata Arahu. They decided to seduce her, and used charcoal to draw designs on one another. Hina-'ere'ere-manu'a was fascinated by the designs and wanted one for herself. She managed to evade her mother and snuck out to get a tattoo. Her name means "Hina with the quick temper."

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Goddess Yemaya  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Yemaya Image
YEMAYA is the Yoruban Goddess of the ocean and motherhood. She is one of the Mami Wata, water spirits known throughout western and central Africa. Worshipped primarily by women, she protects women in childbirth and is called upon to grant fertility. She is the mother of the sun and the moon, two rivers, and eleven other Gods. As Goddess of the ocean, she is also the mother of fish and is sometimes portrayed as a mermaid. When depicted as a woman, she is dressed in skirts of blue and white, symbolizing the ocean. She is a loving mother to her worshippers, but can by turns be as violent and uncontrollable as the sea.

Yemaya's name is a shortened version of YEY OMO EJA, which means "mother whose children are the fish." She is known by many names, having been brought from Africa to Brazil, Cuba, and Haiti. Depending on location, she is called IAMANJA, IAMANJE, IEMANYA, IMANJE, YEMAJA, YEMALLA, YEMANA, YEMANJA, YEMAYAH, YAMOJA, YAMOYA, YEMOJA, or YMOJA. She has also been identified with the Christian saint OUR LADY OF REGLA in syncretized religions such as Santeria. Epithets for her include:

YEMAYA ATARAMAGWA (the wealthy queen of the sea)

YEMAYA ACHABBA (stern)

YEMAYA OQQUTTE (violent)

YEMAYA OLOKUN (overpowering)

STAR OF THE SEA

OCEAN GODDESS OF THE CRESCENT MOON



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Caristia  

Posted by Stella Clark

Caristia Image
Also called it is the occasion of family reunions, on this day Roman fathers would pay special attention to their families. This particular festival did not have any religious obligations or affiliations, and was considered by some to be a break in February for Romans from the multitude of festivals celebrated in this month.

Source: Purple Hell



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Goddess Ammut  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Ammut Image
AMMUT is an Egyptian crocodile Goddess whose name means "female devourer of the dead". She is depicted with the head of a crocodile, the neck and front body of a lion, and the rear body of a hippopotamus. The combination of land and water animals signifies the fact that she left no avenue of escape to the damned. Ammut sits at the place of final judgment, beside the scale on which the deceased's heart is weighed against Maat's Feather of Truth. Other epithets for her include "GREAT OF DEATH" and "EATER OF HEARTS".

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Goddess Ishtar  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Ishtar Image
Ishtar is a Babylonian Goddess and it was she who did the 'Dance of the Seven Veils' to rescue her lover Tammuz. As she descended to the Underworld where he had been taken, she passed through seven gates, removing an article of jewellery or clothing at each gate until she arrived in the Underworld naked and pleaded for his life. Her wish was granted and she she rose back through the gates to the Earth plane all was returned to her.

Ishtar's story reminds us that Love is All and that despite all the beautiful 'things' she owned, it was her heart which was the most important. Ishtar was prepared to give up everything for Love, knowing that 'things' in no way represented who she was or what her heart desired.

So if you are drawn to Ishtar, perhaps it is your time to ask yourself what is most important in your life. Ishtar may be asking you to review your life and to recognise those things that are your hearts desire.

April 22nd is the traditional day for honoring Ishtar, Babylonian version of the Sumerian goddess Inanna, but as we are seeing the first signs of spring this is a good time to remember Ishtar's fertile energy.

Ishtar’s name means “star”, and she was also known as Istar, Estar, Ishara, Ishhara, Astar, Atar, Attar, Athar, Athtar, Irnini, Absusu (in her role as a promiscuous goddess), Abtagigi (“She Who Sends Messages of Desire”), Dilbah (as Venus the morning-star), Hanata (as warrior-deity), Kilili (as symbol of the promiscuous and independent woman), Nanab (“Queen”), Nin Si Anna (“Lady Eye of Heaven’”), Sharrat Shame (“Queen of Heaven”), Ulsiga (a title of reverence meaning “Ishtar of Heaven and Earth”), Zanaru (“Lady of the Lands”), and Zib (as Venus the evening-star). Epithets include Beautiful Queen, Beloved of Enki, Bestower of Strength, Bright Light of Nights, Bright Shining One of the Heavens, Daughter of the Moon, Forgiver of Sins, Framer of all Decrees, Giver of Justice and Laws, Glad-eyed Lady, Goddess of Goddesses, Goddess of Sighing, Great Goddess of Love and War, Great Harlot, Great Lover, Great Mother, Great Whore of Babylon, The Harlot, Heavenly Prostitute, Highest Sovereign of the Heavens, Ishtar of Arbela, Ishtar of Babylon, Ishtar of Nineveh, Lady of All the Harlots of Ur, Lady of Battle, Lady of Birth, Lady of Heaven, Lady of Never-Falling Waters, Lady of the Palace, Lady of Passion and Desire, Lady of Sorrow, Lady of Victory, Lawgiver, Leader of Hosts, Light of the World, Lioness of the Igigi, Mistress of the Gods, Mother of the Fruitful Breast, Mother of Harlots, Opener of the Womb, Protector of the Weak, Queen of Attack and Hand-to-Hand Fighting, Queen of Heaven, Queen of Heaven and Earth, Queen of the Rising of the Sun, Righteous Judge, Ruler of the Heavens, Ruler of the World, She Who Holds Reigns of Royalty, Shining One, and Star of Heaven.

SUGGESTED MANTRA: SEXUALITY

Ishtar represents the fullness of womanhood and dares us to dream. Her power is strongest at the full moon, when the essence of womanhood heightens in response to the moon energy that is all-encompassing.

SUGGESTED AFFIRMATIONS:


~ I am joyful
~ My big hips are sexy!
~ I am healthy and happy
~ I am alive with sexuality
~ I adore my womanly shape
~ I feel absolutely supercharged
~ I have abundant energy and vitality
~ My vital energy resurfaces with laughter

Related essences: Vanilla, almond, oriental lily, bergamot
Related gemstones: Carnelian, coral, agate, brown jaspar (orange stones)

Ishtar's energy represents love, fertility, passion and sexuality. Babylonians have honored Ishtar as a goddess who inspires lovers everywhere to stop for a moment and connect with the fertile energy she brings. The city of Mari worshiped Ishtar as a birth goddess symbolized by the Urn of Life held tight to her belly. Even the Christians have borrowed aspects of the womanly Ishtar and incorporated the divine love of a mother for her dying son into their Virgin Mary.

She is descended from the goddess of romance, Venus, and her energy encompasses all that is "woman" - nurturing mother, inspired companion, playful bed partner, wise advisor, insightful leader. She is revered especially on days of the full moon, when it is right to engage in joyful acts of lovemaking to celebrate being "woman".

April 22nd is the traditional day for honoring Ishtar - as close to this day as possible, on the night of a full moon, to bring Ishtar's loving warmth to your heart and home, wear clothes or jewelry that contain Ishtar's symbolism - stars, the moon, the lion or the dove.

Play a drum with your hands, holding it between your legs. Listen to your heartbeat and send it through your shoulders, arms and hands to the drum, and feel the infinite power of connection to the earth as the vibrations travel back through your body to your core. Energy flows, love grows.

Dance like no one is watching
Sing like no one is listening
Love like you've never been hurt
And live like heaven on earth.

Love and light, ~ Anita ~



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Goddess Modron  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Modron Image
"MODRON" IS A WELSH GODDESS, THE DIVINE MOTHER OF THE LIFE-GIVING WATERS. SHE IS THE HARVEST OF THE FRUITS OF THE EARTH MOTHER, WHO, AS THE "TRIPLE GODDESS" IN HER ASPECT AS ETERNAL MOTHER, ENTERS THE THIRD TRIMESTER OF HER PREGNANCY. "MODRON" WAS THE DAUGHTER OF "AVALLACH "AND, ACCORDING TO LOCAL LEGEND, WAS THE ONE WHO CARRIED ARTHUR OFF TO THE "OTHERWORLD." SOMETIMES "MODRON "IS MATED WITH "URIEN," A GOD OF THE UNDERWORLD. SHE WAS ALSO THE MOTHER OF "MABON "WHO WAS STOLEN AWAY FROM HER WHEN HE WAS THREE DAYS OLD AND LATER RESCUED BY "KING ARTHUR "WHO HAD DISCOVERED" MABON "LIVING SAFELY IN HIS MOTHER'S WOMB".

"MODRON" IS A POWERFUL GODDESS WHO LIVES WITHIN US AND IN ALL ASPECTS OF NATURE, AND LIKE MOST OF THE OTHER CELTIC GODDESSES, SHE WAS ALSO DESCRIBED AS A RIVER GODDESS. SHE POSSIBLY BECAME THE "MORGAN LE FAY "OF LATER LEGENDS.

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Sol Goddess Of The Sun  

Posted by Stella Clark

Sol Goddess Of The Sun Image
IN NORSE MYTHOLOGY, THE SUN IS ASSOCIATED WITH THE FEMALE WHILE THE MOON IS CONSIDERED MALE. THIS IS POSSIBLY DUE TO THE LONG, DARK WINTERS OF SCANDINAVIA AND THAT THE COMING OF THE SUN IS ASSOCIATED WITH WARMTH, LIGHT, LIGHT, AND FERTILITY. THE STORY OF SOL EXPLAINS HOW EARLY HUMANS HUMANIZED THE SUN TO BETTER UNDERSTAND HER.

"SOL "IS THE GODDESS OF THE SUN.IN HER SHINING BRIGHT GLORY, SHE GIFTS US WITH LIFE. SHE IS ALSO CALLED SUNNA OR SUNNE. SHE IS THE DAUGHTER OF MUNDAFARI, THE GIANT, AND GLAUR. HER BROTHER IS MANI, THE GOD OF THE MOON. SHE TRAVELS ACROSS THE HEAVENS, CARRYING THE SUN IN HER CHARIOT, WHILE BEING CHASED DURING THE DAY BY THE SUPERNATURAL WOLF WHO WANTS TO DEVOUR HER, SKOLL. OCCASIONALLY, SKOLL MANAGES TO GET CLOSE ENOUGH TO TAKE A SNAP AT SOL, AND IT IS AT THESE TIMES WHEN WE EXPERIENCE A SOLAR ECLIPSE. SOL IS ONE OF THREE GODDESSES FORETOLD TO DIE IN RAGNAROK, THE END OF THE COSMOS AS WE KNOW IT, BUT NOT BEFORE SHE GIVES BIRTH TO A DAUGHTER WHO IS DESTINED TO OUTSHINE HER IN BEAUTY.

ACCORDING TO THE MYTH, AT RAGNAROK, SKOLL FINALLY CATCHES UP TO SOL AND SLAYS HER. THE SKIES ARE COMPLETELY BLACK, AND SILENCE DESCENDS UPON A WORLD NOW DEVOID OF LIFE. SUDDENLY, THE SKY BRIGHTENS, AND THERE IS A NEW SUN DANCING ALONG THE OLD PATH OF THE PREVIOUS SUN, SOL. SHE WILL BE AS BEAUTIFUL AS HER MOTHER.

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Goddess Ungamilia  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Ungamilia Image
UNGAMILIA is the Australian Aboriginal Goddess of the evening star. It is said that every night she descends into a white stone to the west of Alice Springs.

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Goddess Brigantia  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Brigantia Image
BRIGANTIA IS A TRIPLE GODDESS WHOSE NAME MEANS "QUEEN" OR "HIGH ONE". SHE WAS THE ANCESTRAL GODDESS OF A GROUP OF EUROPEAN TRIBES KNOWN AS THE BRIGANTES. AS A GODDESS, SHE PERSONIFIED THEIR LAND AND THEIR NATION. SHE REPRESENTED THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE LAND, AND ANY MALE RULER WAS SYMBOLICALLY MARRIED TO HER. SHE MAY BE EQUATED WITH BRIGID HERSELF AS A BRANCH OF THIS TRIBE LIVED IN THE COUNTY KILDARE WHERE A HIGH PRIESTESS PRESIDED OVER HER CULT CENTER. THIS WAS PROBABLY THE ORIGIN OF SAINT BRIGID'S ASSOCIATION WITH THIS AREA. BRIGANTIA WAS THE CELTIC GODDESS OF THE SUMMER, A SOLAR GODDESS WHO RULED LIGHT AND FIRE.

EVEN THOUGH SHE WAS WIDELY REVERED IN THE CELTIC WORLD, NOT MUCH IS KNOWN ABOUT BRIGANTIA FROM THE CYMRIC WRITTEN SOURCES, BUT WE DO KNOW THAT SHE IS CLOSELY RELATED TO BRIGID AS GODDESS OF THE LAND. HER AREAS OF CONCERN ARE PROTECTING THE TRIBE AND ENSURING PROSPERITY AND FERTILITY IN THE HOME. WHEN THE ROMANS DESCRIBE HER, SHE RESEMBLES THE GODDESS, MINERVA WHO PERFORMED A SIMILAR ROLE IN ROMAN WORSHIP. THE BRIGANTES WERE A POWERFUL GROUP OF TRIBES WHO MANAGED TO HOLD OFF THE ROMANS FOR YEARS...SO IT IS ONLY NATURAL THAT THEIR GODDESS APPEAR AS A FIGURE OF STRENGTH.

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Goddess Mawu And Liza  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Mawu And Liza Image
" MAWU "IS THE WEST AFRICAN MOON GODDESS; SHE RULES BOTH THE MOON AND THE NIGHT SKY. SHE IS HONORED FOR THE COOL TEMPERATURES SHE BRINGS TO THE AFRICAN WORLD. COOLNESS IS AN EXPRESSION OF WISDOM AND AGE. SHE IS THE ESSENCE OF MOTHERHOOD AND TEACHES HER PEOPLE HOW TO CELEBRATE AND REVERE THEIR ANCESTORS. SHE IS THE FEMALE PRINCIPLE THAT IS ASSOCIATED WITH FERTILITY AND COMPASSION. COWRIE NECKLASSES ARE SACRED TO HER.

AS A DEITY, SHE IS SEEN AS A CREATOR, BUT SHE RARELY HAS SHRINES AND RITUALS DEDICATED TO HER. IT IS SAID THAT SHE CREATED THE UNIVERSE AS SHE RODE ABOUT ON THE BACK OF A GREAT SERPENT WHO WAS SO BIG, HE COULD ENCIRCLE THE SKY. HER TWIN AND CONSORT IS THE SUN GOD, LIZA, THE MALE PRINCIPLE. THEIR UNITY REPRESENTS THE ORDER OF THE UNIVERSE. LIZA DWELLS IN THE EAST AND MAWU IN THE WEST...AND EACH TIME THERE IS AN ECLIPSE, THEY ARE BELIEVED TO BE MAKING LOVE...AND EACH TIME THEY MADE LOVE, THIS LED TO A NEW ACT OF CREATION AND HAS DONE SO EVER SINCE.

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Goddess Tlalteuctli  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Tlalteuctli Image
THE NATIVE AMERICAN LEGENDS OF AZTEC SPEAK ABOUT THE CREATION OF EARTH FROM THE EARTH GODDESS "TLALTEUCTLI." THE EARTH HERSELF IS THE NOURISHER OF LIFE, BUT SHE IS ALSO THE BURIAL GROUNDS OF THE DEAD. ACCORDING TO LEGEND, THE CREATIVE FORCES REPRESENTING THE BRIGHT AND DARK ASPECTS OF CREATION, "QUESTZALCOATL" AND "TEZCATLIPOCA", BRING GODDESS "TLALTEUCTLI "DOWN FROM THE HIGH. NOW, THE EARTH WAS ENCIRCLED IN WATER, SO THE TWO CHANGED THEMSELVES INTO TWO GREAT SERPENTS, ONE OF WHOM SEIZED THE GODDESS FROM THE RIGHT HAND DOWN TO THE LEFT FOOT WHILE THE OTHER FROM THE LEFT HAND DOWN TO THE RIGHT FOOT. AS THEY TIGHTENED THEIR GRIP, SHE BROKE IN THE MIDDLE. THE HALF WITH THE SHOULDERS BECAME THE EARTH AND THE REMAINING HAVE THEY BROUGHT TO THE SKY....GREATLY DISPLEASING THE THE OTHER GODS. SHE IS A GODDESS WHO ALSO DEMANDS SACRIFICE IN THE FORM OF HUMAN HEART FOR ALL HER CREATIVE ACTIVITIES. SOMETIMES SHE WAILS IN THE NIGHT IF SHE DOES NOT GET HER TRADITIONAL OFFERINGS AND DOES NOT BEAR FRUITS UNTIL HER DEMANDS ARE MET.

THUS, THE STORY GOES THAT IN ORDER TO COMPENSATE THE" EARTH GODDESS" FOR THE DAMAGE THOSE TWO HAD INFLICTED UPON HER, ALL THE GODS CAME DOWN TO CONSOLE HER, ORDAINING THAT ALL THE PRODUCE REQUIRED FOR HUMAN LIFE WOULD ISSUE FROM HER. FROM HER HAIR CAME THE TREES, FLOWERS AND GRASSES; FROM HER SKIN, VERY FINE GRASSES AND TINY FLOWERS; FROM HER EYES, WELLS AND FOUNTAINS, AND SMALL CAVES; FROM HER MOUTH, RIVERS AND LARGE CAVES; FROM HER NOSE, VALLEYS AND MOUNTAINS; FROM HER SHOULDERS, THE MOUNTAINS.

MESOAMERICAN TRIBES BELIEVED THAT MOVEMENT AND SOUNDS FROM THE EARTH WERE THE COMPLAINTS OF "TLALTECUHTLI", STILL NOT HAPPY ABOUT BEING TORN APART, SO THEY SACRIFICED HUMANS IN ORDER TO CALM HER DOWN A BIT AND ENSURE THAT SHE CONTINUES TO PROVIDE THE BASIC NECESSITIES FOR HUMAN LIFE. SHE IS CALLED BY MIDWIVES WHEN THE DIFFICULT BIRTH OF AN INFANT THREATENS THE LIFE OF ITS MOTHER.

TLALTECUHTLI IS THE EARTH INCARNATE, THE EARTH MADE FLESH. SHE EMBODIES THE DUALITY OF CREATION AND DEATH. THE GODDESS IS DEPICTED WITH HER MOUTH OPEN TO GIVE AND RECEIVE IN RECIPROCAL RELATIONSHIP WITH THOSE WHO DWELL IN HER. THE FOLLOWING SONG FROM THE "NAHUA" PEOPLES BEAUTIFULLY PORTRAYS THIS RELATIONSHIP OF EARTH AND HUMAN. THE EARTH, THE MOST HOLY EARTH, IS THE SOURCE OF LIFE FOR THESE PEOPLE.. AS THEY THEMSELVES SAY HERE:

We live HERE on this earth (stamping on the mud floor)
We are all fruits of the earth
The earth sustains us
We grow here, on the earth and lower
And when we die, we wither on the earth
We are ALL FRUITS of the earth (stamping on the mud floor).
We eat of the earth
Then the earth eats us

(It is believed that one purpose of this myth is to validate the Aztec custom of sacrificing live human hearts.)

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Goddess Edusa  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Edusa Image
EDUSA is the Roman Goddess of weaning. She takes over the nutrition of children from Rumina, Goddess of breastfeeding, when it is time for children to learn to eat solid foods. The Romans placed great importance on infancy and early childhood, and had many deities devoted to this time, each with rule over a very specific aspect. Edusa's name is also seen as EDUCA, EDULIA, or EDULICA.

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Goddess Luna  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Luna Image
LUNA is a Roman Goddess of the moon. Together with Diana and Hekate, she formed a triad with Luna as the Goddess in Heaven, Diana as the Goddess on Earth, and Hekate as the Goddess in the Underworld. She is often depicted as a pale woman riding in a silver chariot, and was thus also a patroness of charioteers. Her temple on the Aventine Hill in Rome was destroyed by the Great Fire of Rome in the year 64 C.E.

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Goddess Frigga  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Frigga Image
Frigga was the goddess of beauty, love, and marriage. She was the wife of the powerful Norse god, Odin. Some say that Frigga and Freya are one in the same, but personally, I believe they were two different goddesses. Legend has it that Frigga would spend hours at her spinning wheel, weaving the fates...and it is said that the Winter Solstice, the long night of darkness grew from the myths of this great Norse goddess. The celebration of this night was called Yule, adapted from the Norse word "Jul" which means "wheel". The Christmas wreath, a symbol which was adapted from Frigga's "Wheel of Fate "serves as a reminder of the cycle of the seasons and the continuity of life.

Frigga was a sky goddess and was responsible for weaving the clouds; She was also responsible for the rain and for the thunderstorms. Her sacred aniimals was the goose, and some say She was the original Mother Goose who caused it to snow when She shook out Her bedding. When She was seated at Her spinning wheel and weaving the fates, She became a goddess of divination and was credited with the creation of runes....although there are many stories which credit Odin with this. She was a seer, who knew the future, but could never change nor reveal it to others.

The longest night of the year is called "Mother Night" in Northern Europe because it was in the darkness that Frigga labored to bring the Light to birth once again.

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Goddess Quan Yin  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Quan Yin Image
"QUAN YIN'S" NAME MEANS "SHE WHO HEARS THE CRIES OF THE WORLD." SHE PERSONIFIES COMPASSION FOR ALL WHO CALL OUT TO HER IN NEED OF HER ASSISTANCE TO ERADICATE THE MISERY THEY MAY BE EXPERIENCING IN THEIR LIFE. SHE IS VENERATED BY MOST ASIAN RELIGIONS AS A SAVIOR AND THE GODDESS OF MERCY. SHE EMBODIES THE FEMALE PRINCIPLE AND IS USUALLY REPRESENTED AS A YOUNG FEMALE DEITY WHO HAS THE POWER TO ASSUME ANY FORM NECESSARY TO CARRY OUT HER VOW...WHICH IS TO LEAD ALL BEINGS OUT OF A LIFE OF SUFFERING AND INTO THEIR SPIRITUAL REALIZATION.

WORSHIPPED PRIMARILY BY WOMEN, QUAN YIN COMFORTS THE TROUBLED, THE SICK, THE LOST, THE SENILE AND THE UNFORTUNATE. HER POPULARITY HAS GROWN THROUGHOUT THE CENTURIES TO THE EXTENT THAT SHE IS NOW REGARDED AS THE PROTECTOR OF SAILORS, FARMERS AND TRAVELERS. QUAN YIN IS SAID TO HEAR ALL PRAYERS AND HAS COMPASSION AND EMPATHY FOR HUMANKIND. SHE ALSO CARES FOR THE SOULS IN THE UNDERWORLD AND IS INVOKED DURING POST-BURIAL RITUALS TO FREE THE SOUL OF ITS PHYSICAL FROM AND THE TORMENTS OF PURGATORY.

THE FOLLOWING OLD CHINESE FAIRYTALE DEPICTS HOW SHE CAME TO BE AND HOW SHE EARNED HER THOUSAND ARMS AND EYES:

"IN CHINA DURING THE 7TH CENTURY A KING HAD THREE DAUGHTERS, AND THE GREATEST DESIRE OF HIS THIRD AND YOUNGEST DAUGHTER WAS TO BE A NUN, BUT THE KING WANTED HER TO MARRY. WHEN SHE PROTESTED, THE KING BECAME ANGRY AND FLEW INTO A RAGE, ORDERING HER TO SERVE THE FAMILY BY DOING THE MOST MENIAL OF TASKS, SUCH AS SCRUBBING CHAMBERPOTS AND GROWING VEGETABLES IN BARREN ROCKY GROUND. HE WAS SURE THAT SUCH TASKS WOULD HUMBLE HER AND MAKE HER CHANGE HER MIND AND FOLLOW HIS WISHES. BUT IT WAS NOT TO BE.

In fact, she was able to grow beautiful vegetables in the garden. When the king saw that his plan was foiled, he grew very angry and ordered her execution. Fortunately, the executioner was a kind-hearted man who devised a way to make the sword break into a thousand pieces, thus leaving the girl unharmed, but the king saw that the execution was not successful, and took matters into his own hands, slaying his own daughter.

"UPON THE HER ARRIVAL IN THE UNDERWORLD, THE FIRES OF HELL WERE PUT OUT. NOW, THE KING OF THE UNDERWORLD DID NOT LIKE THE CHANGES THAT SHE BROUGHT INTO HIS KINGDOM, SO HE RETURNED HER TO THE LAND OF THE LIVING, RIDING IN THE HEART OF A LOTUS BLOOM. WHEN SHE ARRIVED IN THE LAND OF THE LIVING, SHE MADE HER HOME ON THE TOP OF PUTUO, AN ISLAND IN THE SEA. SHE LIVED HERE FOR MANY YEARS HEALING THE SICK AND SAVING MARINERS FROM SHIPWRECK."

"EVENTUALLY, HER FATHER BECAME ILL, AND HE WAS TOLD THAT THE ONLY THING THAT COULD HEAL HIM WAS THE EYES AND ARMS OF A COMPASSIONATE SOUL. UPON HEARING THIS, QUAN YIN WILLINGLY GAVE HER ARMS AND EYES SO THAT HE MIGHT BE HEALED. NOT KNOWING WHO SHE WAS, HE APPROACHED HER TO GIVE HIS THANKS. AS HE RECOGNIZED HER AS HIS DAUGHTER, AND UNDERSTOOD HER SACRIFICE, A CLOUD DESCENDED UPON HER. WHEN THE CLOUD WENT AWAY THE HOLES THAT WERE ONCE HER EYES AND ARMS HAD BEEN REPLACED BY A THOUSAND EYES AND ARMS.

There are temples throughout the world dedicated to this Her, and women in every country pay homage to Her and send Her their pleas for assistance or gratitude for coming to their aid. Often we find Her depicted holding a vase containing the waters of compassion, the lotus flower of enlightenment or the jewel of the three treasures She is also shown with dragons, which are known as the protectors of faith, keeping watch over temples and Heaven itself.

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Goddess Benzai Ten  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Benzai Ten Image
BENZAI-TEN is the Japanese Goddess of everything that flows--water, music, eloquence, knowledge, the arts, and love. She is one of the Seven Lucky Gods or Shichi Fukujin, and the only female among them. Benzai-Ten is the patroness of geishas, musicians, and dancers. She came to earth to stop a dragon who had been eating the children from a small village. Benzai-Ten descended from the clouds, and the island of Enoshima rose from the sea to meet her. She went to the cave of the dragon, tamed and married him, and convinced him not to eat any more children. She is often pictured riding on her golden dragon, playing a biwa or mandolin. Other representations of her show her with eight arms--two hands are joined in prayer, while the others hold a sword, a bow, an arrow, a wheel, a key, and a jewel. The jewel has the power to grant wishes. Alternative names for Benzai-Ten include BENTEN, BENZAITEN, and BENZAI-TENNYO.

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Goddess Oya  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Oya Image
OYA (pronounced OH-yah) is the Yoruban Goddess of the wind, fire, thunder, and earthquakes. She is the force of change--with her power over storms and her sword of truth, she clears the path for growth and action. In her role as Goddess of the wind, she is the breath in our bodies, and the one who carries us away to the otherworld when our breath ceases. Oya is also known as OYA-YANSAN which means "mother of nine"; the nine tributaries of the Niger River are her children, and she represents the power of all women to create life. She is a warrior Goddess, strong and courageous. Variations on her name include OIA, IANSA, and IANSAN, and epithets associated with her are "THE ONE WHO PUTS ON PANTS TO GO TO WAR" and "THE ONE WHO GROWS A BEARD TO GO TO WAR".

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Goddess Bahuchara  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Bahuchara Image
BAHUCHARA is the Hindu Goddess of castration. She is particularly worshipped by the hijra of India, the transgender and "third sex" community. There are several stories telling of her origin, but one says that she was once a maiden who was attacked by outlaws while traveling. Fearing that she would be raped, Bahuchara cut off her own breast and offered it to the outlaws. She also cursed the outlaws with impotence, a curse that was only lifted when they began to dress as women and worship her. In the present day, impotent and transgender men self-castrate as part of their worship of her. Bahuchara is depicted riding on a rooster, carrying a sword, a trident, and a book of sacred writings. Her name is also seen as BAHUCHARA MATA, BAHUCHARAJI, BAHUCHARI, and BAHUCARA.

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Goddess Bixia Yuanjin  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Bixia Yuanjin Image
BIXIA YUANJIN (pronounced BEE-cha you-on-JEEN) is the Chinese Taoist Goddess of the dawn, childbirth, and destiny. As Goddess of dawn, she attends the birth of each new day from her home high in the clouds. As Goddess of childbirth, she attends the birth of children, fixing their destiny and bringing good fortune. Bixia Yuanjin is venerated in the Temple of the Purple Dawn at the summit of the holy mountain, Tai Shan, where women wishing to conceive come to ask for her help. Her father, Tai Shan Wang, is the God of the mountain and judge of the underworld. Her name is also seen as BIXIA YUANJUN, BIXIA YUAN JUN, PI HSIA YUAN CHUN, and T'IEN HSIEN NIANG NIANG, and epithets for her include PRINCESS OF THE ROSY CLOUDS, PRINCESS OF THE AZURE CLOUDS, and the JADE WOMAN.

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Goddess Hau Ola  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Hau Ola Image
HAU-OLA is a Hawaiian dragon Goddess. She was one of the dragon Gods that Mo'o-inanea brought to Hawaii and settled with her on the island of Oahu. Along with the Goddess Ha-pu'u, she guards the cliff at the end of the Nuuanu Valley. She eventually assumed the form of a large stone, and it was customary to leave ferns on the stone as offerings. Parents also buried the umbilical cords of their children under the stone to protect their babies from evil. The stones were destroyed by a bulldozer in 1953 when a road into the valley was built. Hau-ola's name is also seen as KALAIHAUOLA.

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The Water Goddess  

Posted by Stella Clark

The Water Goddess Image
IN A TIME...LONG, LONG AGO, WATER COVERED THE EARTH; THERE WAS NO LAND. IT WAS A LONG TIME BEFORE MANKIND AND ALL OTHER LIVING THINGS EVOLVED FROM THE PRIMEVAL WATERS. WE NEED WATER TO SURVIVE. IT CAN TRICKLE AS A MOUNTAIN STREAM OR ROAR LIKE THE SOUNDS OF THE OCEAN'S TUMULTUOUS WAVES DURING A RAGING STORM. WE NEED WATER FOR ALL OF FERTILITY...THE LAND, THE CREATURES...AS WELL AS OURSELVES.

THE WATER GODDESS HAVE ALWAYS BEEN THE GUARDIANS OF THE SPRINGS, THE WELLS, AND THE RIVERS. THE GREAT MOTHER IS THE OCEAN. THE WATER GODDESS PROVIDES US WITH WISDOM IN TIMES OF STRESS AND GRIEF OR WHEN WE ARE MOST IN NEED OF COMFORT AND SUPPORT. SHE IS THERE WHEN WE FIND OURSELVES AT THE CROSSROADS, AND SHE CAN REMIND US TO FLOW IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION...TO MARK OUR LIFE STAGES WITH RITUALS. IF WE FEEL AS IF LIFE IS CLOSING IN, AND WE ARE DROWNING, SHE CAN REMIND US THAT THE WATER SUPPORTS US; WE DO NOT NEED TO GO UNDER.

THE "APSARASES "(MOVING WATER) ARE HINDU CELESTIAL NYMPHS WHO CAME FORTH FROM THE WATERS; THEY GIVE SOLACE TO THE DEITIES AND SOULS OF THE DEAD WARRIORS. THEY ARE BEAUTIFUL WITH THE GIFTS OF GRACE AND AND YOUTH...AND PROFICIENT IN THE ART OF DANCING. THEY ARE THE ESSENCE OF WATER AND SYMBOLIZE THE CLOUDS OR THE MISTS...THE NURTURING QUALITIES OF WATER, AND AS WATER, THEY HAVE THE POWER TO CHANGE THEIR FORMS AND CAN CHANGE THEMSELVES INTO BIRDS OR FISH WHENEVER THEY SEE FIT. THEY GIVE US THE GIFTS OF ENERGY TRANSFORMATION AND NURTURE US.

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Goddess Tuonetar  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Tuonetar Image
TUONETAR (pronounced TWOAN-et-ar) is the Finnish Goddess of the underworld. She is the wife of Tuoni, God of the underworld, which is called Tuonela. Her appearance is that of a hag, and her touch could pull a mortal's soul from their body and send it to the underworld. Tuonetar is the mother by Tuoni of a number of other dark Gods and Goddesses, including Loviatar (Goddess of plagues), Kipu-Tytto (Goddess of illness), Kivutar (Goddess of disease), and Vammater (Goddess of pain). In one myth in the "Kalevala", the hero V"ain"am"oinen journeyed to the underworld, and Tuonetar greeted him with a stein of beer in which frogs and worms were swimming. She told him that he would not be allowed to leave the underworld and had him caught in an iron net. V"ain"am"oinen, however, was able to change shape, and he changed himself into a snake and escaped. Tuonetar's name means "queen of the dead."

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