Turkish Air God  

Posted by Stella Clark

Turkish Air God Image
The Byzantine historian Theophylact Simocatta wrote "The Turks worship fire, water, earth, sky and air."13 The Turks believed that the Air God supervised life between the Sky and Earth. Air, as well as all other deities, was subordinate to Tengri. Without Air, life on the Earth is impossible. Air was a vital force that entered the body with breath.

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Goddess Xochiquetzal  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Xochiquetzal Image
XOCHIQUETZAL (pronounced so-chee-KETZ-al) is the Aztec Goddess of flowers, love, and pregnancy. She also rules over all domestic arts, games, dancing, and prostitutes. She was the wife of Tlaloc, the rain God, but she was kidnapped by Tezcatlipoca, the God of night. While still with Tlaloc, Xochiquetzal played a role in the invention of something very important-chocolate. Quetzalcoatl, the sky God, loved his people very much and stole a cacao tree from paradise to give to them. He asked Tlaloc to feed the plant with his rain, and Xochiquetzal decorated it with her flowers. Some of the flowers turned into pods, which Quetzalcoatl taught the people to harvest, roasting the beans inside to produce the first chocolate.

Xochiquetzal's name means "flower feather", and she is usually depicted with a feathered headdress and holding flowers, particularly marigolds, being followed by butterflies and hummingbirds. Her titles include FLOWER MISTRESS, FLOWER-FEATHER, MOST PRECIOUS FLOWER, FLOWER OF THE RICH PLUME, BITCH MOTHER, and BLUE-SKIRTED LADY.

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Goddess Vr  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Vr Image
V'aR is the Norse Goddess of marriage vows. She is one of Frigg's handmaidens, and is responsible for making sure that those who pledge their hearts in marriage are true to their vows. She also punishes those who break their oaths. V'ar's name means "pledge."

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Ereshkigal Queen Of The Underworld  

Posted by Stella Clark

Ereshkigal Queen Of The Underworld Image
The Sumarian Goddess, Ereshkigal, ruler of the Underworld, is the sister of Innana, the Queen of Heaven. Originally a sky Goddess, Ereshkigal was kidnapped by the dragon, Kur, who carried her off into the Underworld and enthroned her as its Queen. Soon thereafter, the son of Enlil, Nergal, a Sun diety, forces his way into the Underworld and threatens to destroy Her reign unless she becomes his wife.

Perhaps the best known myth of Ereshkigal is that of the story of Innana's descent into Her realm. According to the tale, Inanna descends into the Underworld in the hopes of stealing Ereshkigal's power. To get there, Inanna must pass through the seven gates of the Underworld but would not be allowed to pass through unless she removed an article of clothing at each of the gates. So, by the time She arrived at Ereshkal's inner palace, She was naked and weakened, but determined to that She was going to complete her undertaking. There came a point when Ereshkigal rose from Her throne, and Inanna immediately rushed to take her place. As punishment for her actions, Ereshkal's counselors sentence Her to death for Her actions and hang Her corpse on a hook.

But Innana, ever thoughtful, had instructed her messenger, Ninshubur, before Her journey that if She did not return within three days and three nights, he should seek help for that would mean She had not survived Her journey. At first he sought help from the gods, Enlil and Nanna, but they refused believing that Inanna deserved to die for Her ambition. He than approached Enki, the Lord of Wisdom, for assistance. Enki was willing to help and created two creatures, the Kurarru and the Kalaturru, from the dirt under his fingernails and then instructed them to carry the food and water of life to Inanna in order to revive Her. Their mission was a success, but the counselors demanded that Inanna find a substitute to put in her place if She was allowed to leave. When She agreed, She was accompanied from the Underworld by a legion of demons to make sure she chose a replacement.

Innana adamently refused to allow the demons to take anyone who had mourned Her during Her confinement. So, when Innana came upon Her husand, Dumuzi, and found him adorned in a magnificent robe instead of mourning clothing, She knew he was the one. She told the demons to take him as Her substitute. The wily Dumuzi quickly used his own magic to change himself into a reptile and thus escaped to his sister, Gestinanna who took pity on him and agreed to take his position in the underworld for half the year, while he would spend the other half the year in the underworld.

The goddesses Innana and Ershkigal are actually one and the same, two facets of the human psyche, the cycle of the year in its full seasonal round. The division of light and darkness is a primary one, and, thus, all that is ruled by light and growth, the summer, is a facet Innana. On the other hand, Ershkigal is the transformer; She represents the winter when everything around us decays, rots, but the potential remains from the growth of the season of Harvest and is readied for rebirth in the Spring. Ereshkigal is feared because She is intense, powerful and favors none. She is both the source of vitality and life and as such, She is the enemy of all those who seek to perpetuate themselves in an avoidance of change. Both order and organization oppose the natural cycles of decay; as a result, we tend to characterize Ereshkigal as chaotic and negative because it is She who understands the fundamental truth of all cycles.

From Ershkigal we all can learn about the value of life, the secrets of happiness, and how to release our anger in an effective manner. We should also reenact Innana's descent into the Underworld so we can meet the Dark Goddess Herself, but if we chose to do so, we should not fear the trials She may make us face for they will help us to grow. Although She may make us gaze into the darkest pits of our psyche, we will return as different persons for once we have faced our darkest self and acknowledged it as part of us, then and only then can we be truly free. When we do not consciously the dark feminine in ourselves, we place ourselves on dangerous ground.

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Chronos  

Posted by Stella Clark

Chronos Cover
Chronos in pre-Socratic philosophical works is said to be the personification of time. His name in Modern Greek also means "year" and is alternatively spelled Chronus (Latin spelling). Chronos was imagined as an incorporeal god. Serpentine in form, with three heads-that of a man, a bull, and a lion. He and his consort, serpentine Ananke (Inevitability), circled the primal world-egg in their coils and split it apart to form the ordered universe of earth, sea and sky. He is not to be confused with the Titan Cronus.

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Goddess Ragana  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Ragana Image
RAGANA is the Latvian Goddess of magic. She can see the future and control magic in all its forms. With the coming of Christianity, she was downgraded to the status of witch, which is the meaning of her name.

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Greek Goddess Leto  

Posted by Stella Clark

Greek Goddess Leto Image
LETO (pronounced LEE-toe) is the Greek Goddess of motherhood and the oracles of the day. She is the daughter of the Titans Phoebe and Koios, sister of Asteria, Goddess of the oracles of the night. Leto's role as Goddess of oracles, symbolized by her modest dress and veil, was overshadowed when she became a mother, and most mentions of her in myth are in relation to her children. Where her sister Asteria had fled from Zeus's lustful attentions, Leto went to him willingly, and may even have been married to him before Hera. When she was pregnant with Zeus's children, the twins Artemis and Apollo, Hera chased her relentlessly and threatened anyone who thought to help Leto. Finally, her sister Asteria, who had turned into an island rather than submit to Zeus, offered her a place to give birth.

There are several versions of the myths surrounding the births of the twins. In one, Artemis was born first and then assisted her mother with the birth of Apollo. Some sources add to this that Artemis was born nine days before Apollo. In another version, Leto was attended by the Titan Goddesses Dione, Rhea, Theia, Themis, and Amphitrite. The Goddess of childbirth, Eileithyia, who usually came to oversee births, had not heard Leto's calls because she was with her mother Hera on Mount Olympus, and Hera did not want her to help Leto. The assembled Goddesses sent Iris, Goddess of rainbows and the messenger of the Gods, to bring Eilithyia, and when she finally arrived the twins were born.

From this point forward, Leto was almost always mentioned in conjunction with one or both of her children. Leto's name, which means "unseen," is also seen as LATONA (Roman version), and epithets used for her include KOIEIS, KOIOGENEIA, KOIOGENES (all meaning "daughter of Koios"), KHRYSELAKATOS (with golden spindle), PHYSTIE (grafter), DARK-GOWNED, DARK-VEILED, AUGUST, GLORIOUS, QUEENLY, BRIGHT-HAIRED, LOVELY-HAIRED, RICH-HAIRED, GOLD-TRESSED, NEAT-ANKLED, SLIM-WAISTED, FAR-FAMED, and TWIN-BEARING.

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Hecate Suppers  

Posted by Stella Clark

Hecate Suppers Cover
Ritual meals were among Hecate's traditional rites. Once upon a time, these dinners were consumed outside under the dark moon, ideally at a crossroads. One plate was reserved for Hecate; after her devotees dined, just before they departed, Hecate's plate was laid down at the crossroads.

Traditionally whatever is given to Hecate cannot be reclaimed. Thus, do not break out your priceless set of china; lay the meal on the ground or use a serving dish that will be incorporated into the offering. Once the offering is laid down, depart without looking back. Hecate determines who picks up the offering.

Once upon a time, observers scoffed at Hecate's rituals, commenting that offerings made to the goddess were consumed by homeless people or feral animals, however they misunderstood: this is among the ways Hecate accepts offerings.

A typical Hecate Supper menu includes eggs, fish roe, goat and sheep cheese, sprats, red mullet - a scavenger fish that was the subject of many taboos - garlic, mushrooms, and honey cake surrounded by blazing torches or cakes decorated with miniature imitation torches (candles). Other ideas include garlic, salmon, honey, and edible flowers.

source: "Coven Of Hecate"



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Goddess Pomona  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Pomona Image
POMONA is the Roman Goddess of fruit trees and orchards. Pomona lived in an orchard, from which she barred all men. Many men tried to gain entrance to her orchard, but she denied them. Finally, Vertumnus, God of the changing of the seasons, took to using disguises to trick her. One day, an old woman came to Pomona's orchard, and she was admitted. The woman told Pomona that she should reconsider her rejection of Vertumnus, and illustrated with the story of Iphis and Anaxerete:

Iphis was a young man who fell desperately in love with the maiden Anaxerete, but she was unmoved by his declarations of love, and even mocked him. Iphis, realizing that it was hopeless, killed himself in front of Anaxerete's house. Still she was unmoved, and Venus, the Goddess of love, punished her for her coldness by turning her to stone.

When the old woman finished the story, she threw off her cloak, revealing herself to be Vertumnus in disguise. Pomona relented, and they were married. Pomona's name comes from the Latin word pomum, meaning "fruit", and she was also called the "APPLE-MOTHER".

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Goddess Doumu  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Doumu Image
"DOUM"U, "THE CHINESE MOTHER AND SKY GODDESS, IS AN IMPORTANT DEITY IN THE TAOIST HIERARCHY. HER NAME MEANS "MOTHER OF THE GREAT WAGON". SHE IS ALSO KNOWN AS THE GODDESS OF THE "NORTH STAR "AND MOTHER OF THE SEVEN STARS OF THE "BIG DIPPER. DOUMU "HAS THREE EYES, FOUR HEADS (EACH FACING ONE OF THE FOUR CARDINAL DIRECTIONS), AND EIGHT HANDS HOLDING THE "SUN, MOON", AND DIFFERENT WEAPONS RESPECTIVELY. SHE IS PORTRAYED AS SITTING UPON A LOTUS THRONE.

SHE IS A "GODDESS" WHO CONTROLS NOT ONLY THE NATURAL PROCESS OF HEAVEN AND EARTH AND HELPS TO MAINTAIN THE UNIVERSE IN EQUILIBRIUM. SHE HOLDS THE BOOKS ON LIFE AND DEATH, CONTROLLING THE DAYS OF HUMANS AND SUPERVISES A REGISTER IN WHICH THE LIFE AND DEATH OF EACH PERSON ON EARTH IS RECORDED. SHE IS SAID TO HAVE THE ABILITY TO SAVE PEOPLE WHO CALL ON HER FROM MANY EVILS AND TROUBLES.

SHE IS RATHER LIKE A "KYAN YIN", BEING A COMPASSIONATE GODDESS AND IS VENERATED BY THOSE WHO WISH A LONG LIFE AND PERSONAL COMPASSION. IN TAOIST TEMPLES A HALL IS OFTEN DEDICATED TO HER. SHE IS ALSO VENERATED BY CHINESE BUDDHISTS.

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Goddess Gula Bau  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Gula Bau Image
"GULA BAU", THE" GREAT ONE", IS THE BABYLONIAN GODDESS OF HEALING AND PATRON OF MEDICINE. THIS UNDERWORLD GODDESS WAS THE DAUGHTER OF THE SKY GOD, "ANI", AND THE EARTH GODDESS, "URASH. "SHE WAS THE MOTHER OF" TAMMUZ. "SHE LIVES IN A GARDEN IN THE CENTER OF THE WORLD, AND IT WAS SHE WHO HELPED TO BREATHE LIFE INTO MANKIND AFTER THE GREAT FLOOD. IT WAS ORIGINALLY THOUGHT THAT THERE HAD BEEN TWO GODDESSES...GULA AND A GODDESS CALLED, BAU...BUT THE TWO ARE IDENTICAL. SHE OFTEN APPEARS AS A WOMAN WITH STARS AND HER DOG. SHE WAS ALSO WORSHIPPED AS A GODDESS OF THE GRAIN AND WAS A FORERUNNER OF DEMETER AND PERSEPHONE.

Gula is the mother of healing of the body, mind, and the soul. She rules over all herbs and incantations used for health-related issues. She is often called the great physician and accordingly plays a prominent role in incantation rituals intended to relieve those who are suffering from disease. She was the life-giver who cured disease with the touch of Her hand and led the dead to a new life. She is also a Goddess of Retribution and has the power to inflict disease as well as to heal.

HER COLOR WAS BLUE. HER SACRED ANIMAL WAS THE DOG; IN FACT, A LARGE NUMBER OF SMALL VOTIVE FIGURES OF DOGS DEDICATED TO THE GODDESS BY HER DEVOTEES HAVE BEEN FOUND IN EXCAVATIONS AT THE ISIN SANCTUARY OF GULA. IT SEEMS THAT DOGS WERE ALLOWED TO WANDER FREELY WITHIN THE SANCTUARY AND PLAYED A KEY ROLE IN THE HEALING RITUAL.

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Baba Yaga 4  

Posted by Stella Clark

Baba Yaga 4 Image
IN SLAVIC MYTHOLOGY," BABA YAGA "IS THE ARCHETYPAL HAG, THE OLD WITCH, THE ANCIENT SLAVIC GODDESS OF DEATH AND REGENERATION. "BABA", IN EASTERN EUROPE, MEANS "REVERED GRANDMOTHER" OR "HOLY TEACHER." SHE IS THE WILD OLD CRONE WHO LIVES IN THE NOCTURNAL DARKNESS, FAR FROM THE WORLD OF MEN. SHE RULES OVER THE ELEMENTS AND ORDERS THE CYCLES OF NATURE. SHE IS "MOTHER TIME" HERSELF. SHE IS OFTEN DEPICTED AS LIVING IN A REMOTE FOREST IN A MAGICAL HUT WHICH IS SURROUNDED BY A FENCE OF BONES; SHE REPRESENTS THE POWER OF OLD AGE, OF WITCH, AND OF THE LIFE CYCLE THAT IS BIRTH, DEATH AND REBIRTH. SHE IS THEREFORE ALSO ASSOCIATED WITH BIRCH FORESTS.

SHE WATCHES OVER THE "WATER OF LIFE AND DEATH, "AND DESPITE HER POWERFUL APPEARANCE, SHE IS ALSO THE" EARTH MOTHER "WHO POSSESSES THE POWER OF NATURE AND ALL OF THE SEASONS. INDEED, "BABA YAGA "IS THE"GREAT G"ODDESS OF NATURE" AS WELL AS THE "GODDESS OF DEATH"....IN THE SENSE THAT DEATH IS PART OF NATURE. AS THE GODDESS OF DEATH AND BIRTH, SHE IS CLOSELY ASSOCIATED WITH SERPENTS AND DRAGONS. ALTHOUGH SHE IS FEARSOME TO LOOK UPON, LIKE ALL FORCES OF NATURE THAT ARE OFTEN WILD AND UNTAMED, SHE CAN ALSO BE KIND. ALTHOUGH SHE IS ESSENTIALLY REGARDED AS A FEMALE DEITY, SHE IS EQUALLY AT HOME IN THE WORLD OF MEN AND CARRIES A WAND WITH WHICH SHE CAN TRANSFORM HERSELF AT WILL.

SHE IS A POWERFUL FIGURE TO WOMEN OF ALL AGES, ESPECIALLY FOR THOSE OF US WHO ARE PAST THE AGE OF REPRODUCTION. WE MEET HER EACH DAY AS PARTS OF US DIE AND IN EVERY SITUATION OF LOSS--JOBS, RELATIONSHIPS, ETCH. SHE IS THE REFLECTION OF OUR SHADOW, OUR DARK SIDE, AND IT IS THROUGH HER THAT WE CAN HOPE TO BE REBORN. DEALING WITH "BABA YABA" MEANS WE HAVE TO BE IN TOUCH WITH OUR OWN LIFE FORCE, AND AS FOR AS LONG AS WE ARE HOSTILE TO HER, SHE WILL BE HOSTILE TO US, BUT TO THE PURE AT HEART, SHE OFFERS ADVICE, WISDOM, AND MAGICAL GIFTS.

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Goddess Hina Puku Ia  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Hina Puku Ia Image
HINA-PUKU-I'A is the Hawaiian Goddess of seafood. Her husband, Ku'ula-kai, is a God of fish, as is their son, Ai-ai. Her sister, Hina-puku'ai, is the Goddess of vegetables. Hina-puku-i'a is one of the many forms of the Great Goddess Hina, and her name means "Hina gathering seafood."

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Goddess Heket  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Heket Image
HEKET is an Egyptian Goddess of childbirth. She is depicted as a woman with a frog's head or as a frog itself, a symbol of life and fertility. Heket helps to form the child in the womb and then presides over the birth. Midwives were known as "servants of Heket". Variations on her name include HEQET, HEKA, and HEPAT.

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The Captured Goddess  

Posted by Stella Clark

The Captured Goddess Image
"OVER THE HOUSETOPS,"

"ABOVE THE ROTATING CHIMNEY-POTS,"

"I HAVE SEEN A SHIVER OF AMETHYST,"

"AND BLUE AND CINNAMON HAVE FLICKERED"

"A MOMENT,"

"AT THE FAR END OF A DUSTY STREET."

"THROUGH SHEETED RAIN"

"HAS COME A LUSTRE OF CRIMSON,"

"AND I HAVE WATCHED MOONBEAMS"

"HUSHED BY A FILM OF PALEST GREEN."

"IT WAS HER WINGS,"

"GODDESS!"

"WHO STEPPED OVER THE CLOUDS,"

"AND LAID HER RAINBOW FEATHERS"

"ASLANT ON THE CURRENTS OF THE AIR."

"I FOLLOWED HER FOR LONG,"

"WITH GAZING EYES AND STUMBLING FEET."

"I CARED NOT WHERE SHE LED ME,"

"MY EYES WERE FULL OF COLOURS:"

"SAFFRONS, RUBIES, THE YELLOWS OF BERYLS,"

"AND THE INDIGO-BLUE OF QUARTZ;"

"FLIGHTS OF ROSE, LAYERS OF CHRYSOPRASE,"

"POINTS OF ORANGE, SPIRALS OF VERMILION,"

"THE SPOTTED GOLD OF TIGER-LILY PETALS,"

"THE LOUD PINK OF BURSTING HYDRANGEAS."

"I FOLLOWED,"

"AND WATCHED FOR THE FLASHING OF HER WINGS."

"IN THE CITY I FOUND HER,"

"THE NARROW-STREETED CITY."

"IN THE MARKET-PLACE I CAME UPON HER,"

"BOUND AND TREMBLING."

"HER FLUTED WINGS WERE FASTENED TO HER SIDES WITH CORDS,"

"SHE WAS NAKED AND COLD,"

"FOR THAT DAY THE WIND BLEW"

"WITHOUT SUNSHINE."

"MEN CHAFFERED FOR HER,"

"THEY BARGAINED IN SILVER AND GOLD,"

"IN COPPER, IN WHEAT,"

"AND CALLED THEIR BIDS ACROSS THE MARKET-PLACE."

"THE GODDESS WEPT."

"HIDING MY FACE I FLED,"

"AND THE GREY WIND HISSED BEHIND ME,"

"ALONG THE NARROW STREETS."

"--AMY LOWELL--"

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Goddess Nanshe  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Nanshe Image
THE WATER GODDESS "NANSHE" OF THE CITY OF "LAGASH" IN "SUMER" WAS DESCRIBED AS THE JUDGE OF ALL HUMANKIND, ESPECIALLY AT THE TIME OF THE NEW YEAR WHICH THE BABYLONIANS CELEBRATED DURING THE SPRING. THE "AKITU FESTIVAL" LASTED FOR TWELVE DAYS AND WAS A TIME OF PURIFICATION AND RENEWAL OF VEGETATION. SHE WAS HONORED EACH YEAR WITH A CAVALCADE OF BOATS AND A SACRED BARGE THAT BORE HER IMAGE.HER SYMBOLS INCLUDE JARS OF BIRDS, WATER AND FISH, AND AT HER FEASTS, SHE WAS GIVEN SILVER CROWNS AND VESSELS OF STONE OR PRECIOUS METAL.

THE DAUGHTER OF" ENKI "AND "NINHURSAG," SHE WAS THE GODDESS OF WATER AND HAD A SPECIAL CONNECTION TO THE UNDERGROUND SPRINGS. SHE ALSO PROTECTS THE CROPS AND THE RIVER AND CAN GRANT VISIONS OF THE FUTURE. IT IS SAID THAT SHE BLESSED HER PRIESTS WITH SOOTHSAYING ABILITIES. FOR AWHILE, "NANSHE" WAS A VERY IMPORTANT GODDESS WHO PLAYED AN IMPORTANT ROLE IN HUMANITY'S MORAL AND ETHICAL CONDUCT. SHE WAS THE OVERSEER OF SOCIAL JUSTICE AND THE MOTHER OF THE ORPHAN, A SUPPORTER OF THE WIDOW, AND THE DEFENDER OF THE POOR. THERE IS AN OLD "MESOPOTAMIAN" HYMN TO" NANSHE" DECLARES THAT ANYONE OPPRESSING THE WEAK WOULD BE PUNISHED BY THE GODDESS

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Goddess Antu  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Antu Image
ANTU is the Babylonian Goddess of the sky. She is the consort of Anu, God of the sky, and the mother of the Gods Enlil and Ea (Enki in Sumerian). Where Anu's consort in Sumerian mythology was Ki, a Goddess of the earth, the Babylonians instead gave him a consort who ruled the sky, as he did. Antu's name is also seen as ANTUM.

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Goddess Bila  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Bila Image
BILA is the Australian Aboriginal Goddess of the sun. She was a cannibal who caught her human victims and roasted them over an open fire, which provided light for the world continuously. Kudnu, the Lizard Man, and Muda, the Gecko Man, decided to stop her from eating the people and Kudnu threw a boomerang at her and injured her. Bila turned into a ball of fire and fled the world, leaving it in darkness. Kudnu threw boomerangs to each of the directions to try and catch her, and the one that he threw to the east hit its mark. The ball of fire returned to the sky, traveling slowly from east to west, sinking below the horizon and returning in the east each day. Kudnu and Muda were celebrated for stopping the killing and for creating day and night, and from that time on, the people did not eat lizards or geckos in their honor.

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Greek Goddess Minerva  

Posted by Stella Clark

Greek Goddess Minerva Image
MINERVA is the Roman Goddess of wisdom, war, medicine, and the female arts of spinning and weaving. She is the Roman equivalent of the Greek Goddess Athena, and as Athena was born from Zeus's forehead, so Minerva was born from the forehead of her father, Jupiter. Jupiter, his wife Juno, and Minerva form a trinity referred to as the Capitoline triad; a temple on the Capitoline Hill was built to honor them by the last King of Rome, Tarquinius Superbus. Another temple, the Delubrum Minervae, is now the site of the church Santa Maria sopra Minerva (Saint Mary over Minerva).

Minerva is often depicted in armor and holding a spear, as befits a Goddess of war. She also has the ability to throw Jupiter's thunderbolts. Her other attributes are evidenced by her many epithets, although it can be very difficult to determine which epithets were given to Minerva alone, and which were carried over to her from Athena.
Other MINERVA Names:

MINERVA OF THE SPEAR
THE STRONG ONE
GUARDIAN OF THE SKILLFUL
THE VIRGIN SPIRIT
GODDESS OF A THOUSAND WORKS
MINERVA ACHAEA (griever)
MINERVA AMPHIRA (divine influence)
MINERVA ARMIFERA (bearing arms)
MINERVA ARMIPOTENS (powerful in arms)
MINERVA BELISAMA (like Belisama)
MINERVA BELLIPOTENS (powerful in war)
MINERVA CAESIA (grey-eyed)
MINERVA CABARDIACENSIS (the heron that conveys wealth)
MINERVA CAPTA (from the head, referring to her birth from Jupiter's forehead)
MINERVA CASTITIS (protector of olive trees)
MINERVA CATULIANA (for Catulus, a Roman admiral who dedicated standard to her)
MINERVA ERGATIS (work woman)
MINERVA FRENALES (bridler)
MINERVA HOSPITA (hostess)
MINERVA LETHAM (an Etruscan Goddess absorbed by Minerva)
MINERVA LUSCINIA (nightingale, for inventing the flute)
MINERVA MACHINATRIX (contriver or inventress)
MINERVA MEDICA (medicine)
MINERVA MENSA (measurer of time)
MINERVA MONTANA (mountain)
MINERVA NERIO (valor)
MINERVA PACIFERA (bearer of peace)
MINERVA PANTEUCHIA (with every weapon)
MINERVA PARTHENOS (virgin)
MINERVA PERSPICAX (sharp-sighted)
MINERVA PRAESTES (presiding or protecting)
MINERVA PYLOTIS (of the narrow pass)
MINERVA SAIS (from the Egyptian city of the same name)
MINERVA SALUS (health)
MINERVA TRITONIA (third queen)
MINERVA UNIGENA (single birth, as daughter of Jupiter alone without a mate)
MINERVA VIRAGO (manly maiden)


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Demeter Goddess Of Grain And The Harvest  

Posted by Stella Clark

Demeter Goddess Of Grain And The Harvest Image
"DEMETER" WAS THE GODDESS OF GRAIN AND THE HARVEST, AND AS SUCH ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT DEITIES IN THE GREEK PANTHEON. HER NAME MEANS "BARLEY" OR "GRAIN MOTHER". IN GREEK MYTHOLOGY THE GODDESS SHE WAS ONE OF THE ORIGINAL OLYMPIANS AND A SISTER OF "ZEUS." ACCORDING TO THE TIMELESS MYTH OF CYCLICAL DEATH AND REBIRTH, IT IS BECAUSE "DEMETER" GRIEVES FOR THE LOSS OF HER DAUGHTER "PERSEPHONE" THAT WE HAVE tHE SEASONS OF "AUTUMN" AND "WINTER.

"PERSEPHONE WAS A BEAUTIFUL, HAPPY GIRL WHO "DEMETER" LOVED SO MUCH THAT SHE TOOK HER ALONG WHENEVER SHE TENDED HER GRAIN FIELDS. ONE DAY, WHILE "DEMETER" TENDS HER FIELDS, "PERSEPHONE" WHO HAS BEEN FROLICKING WITH HER FRIENDS, STRAYS FROM THE EVER WATCHFUL EYE OF HER MOTHER. AND, AS SHE STOPS TO PICK A PARTICULARLY LOVELY "NARCISSUS," SHE IS KIDNAPPED BY THE COLD RULER OF THE "UNDERWORLD, HADES."

"Demeter "searched in vain for Her lost daughter and feared that She would never see Her beloved "Persephone" again, and as She mourned, She WITHDREW HER TOUCH FROM THE LAND AND THE WORLD BECAME BARREN AS THE PLANTS WITHERED AND DIED. THEN, IN THE GUISE OF A "CRONE, DEMETER "ARRIVED IN THE CITY OF "ATTICA", IN "ELEUSIS" WHERE SHE WAS WELCOMED BY THE "KING" AND BECAME THE NURSE OF HIS TWO YOUNG SONS. IN AN EFFORT TO MAKE ONE OF THEM IMMORTAL, "DEMETER" BEGAN TO HOLD THE CHILD OVER A SACRED FLAME EACH NIGHT. THE "QUEEN" DISCOVERED HER IN THE ACT, AND, NOT KNOWING THAT SHE WAS A GODDESS, BROKE THE SPELL WITH A CRY OF HORROR. IT WAS THEN THAT "DEMETER "REVEALED HERSELF AND COMMANDED THAT A TEMPLE BE BUILT IN HER HONOR. AND IT WAS IN THE TEMPLE OF "ELEUSIS" THAT "DEMETER" SECLUDED HERSELF FROM THE WORLD.

ON" EARTH", THE PEOPLE WERE DYING FROM LACK OF FOOD AND THE GODS BEGGED DEMETER TO RECONSIDER. FINALLY, "TRIPTOLEMOS", ONE OF THE SONS OF THE KING WENT TO "DEMETER" AND RELATED TO HER A STRANGE THING HE HAD HEARD. IT SEEMS THAT, ON THE DAY OF" PERSEPHONE'S" DISAPPEARANCE, HE HAD BEEN TENDING TO A FLOCK OF SHEEP AND HAD WITNESSED THE GROUND AS IT OPENED UP AND "HADES "HIMSELF HAD APPEARED. THEN HE HEARD A YOUNG GIRL SCREAM, AND "HADES" DISAPPEARED AGAIN, THE GROUND CLOSING UP BEHIND HIM. "DEMETER "IMMEDIATELY KNEW WHAT HAD HAPPENED TO HER DAUGHTER, AND ENRAGED, WENT TO" ZEUS" AND DEMANDED "PERSEPHONE'S "RETURN.

IT WAS THEN THAT "DEMETER "LEARNED THAT "PERSEPHONE" HAD TASTED THE FRUIT OF THE DEAD, THE POMEGRANATE SEED, AND WOULD BE REQUIRED TO REMAIN IN THE "UNDERWORLD. "BUT, RATHER THAN HAVE THE MORTALS SUFFER," ZEUS" CAME UP WITH A COMPROMISE TO THE SITUATION - "PERSEPHONE" WOULD RETURN TO HER DARK PLACE UNDER THE EARTH FOR ONE THIRD OF THE YEAR, AND THE REST OF THE TIME SHE WOULD SPEND WITH "DEMETER."

AND SO IT IS THAT EACH "AUTUMN, "WHEN "PERSEPHONE" RETURNED TO THE "UNDERWORLD", AND "DEMETER" MOURNS HER ABSENCE. BUT, JUST AS A SEED PLANTED IN THE EARTH, "PERSEPHONE "BURSTS FORTH IN THE "SPRING", AND THE WORLD THRIVES ONCE AGAIN.

THE LARGEST CELEBRATION TO HONOR "DEMETER" WAS "THESMOPHORIA," WHCIH WAS HELD EACH "AUTUMN "IN ATHENS AND A FEW OTHER CITIES, JUST BEFORE THE SOWING SEASON. ITS MYSTERIES WERE FORBIDDEN TO MEN AND WAS LARGELY RESTRICTED TO MARRIED CITIZEN WOMEN, AND FOR AS LONG AS THE CELEBRATION LASTED, THE WOMEN HAD TO MAINTAIN SEXUAL ABSTINENCE. FOR THE WOMEN, IT WAS AN OPPORTUNITY TO GET AWAY FROM THEIR DOMESTIC DUTIES...EVEN IF ONLY FOR JUST A SHORT TIME.

"WISHING YOU AND YOURS BLESSINGS ON THIS SPECIAL DAY."

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Greek Goddess Persephone  

Posted by Stella Clark

Greek Goddess Persephone Image
See! I promised Persephone and here she is (better late than never).

PERSEPHONE (pronounced per-SEF-uh-nee) is the Greek Goddess of the Underworld and of the growth of plants in spring. She is the daughter of Demeter, Goddess of the Earth, and Zeus, King of the Gods. The name KORE is also used for Persephone, originating from the belief that it was taboo to utter the name of the Queen of the Underworld, but that it was acceptable to use the name of her maiden persona (Kore literally means "maiden"). The most famous myth involving Persephone is that of her abduction by and marriage to Hades, God of the Underworld. (Many retellings of the story refer to it as rape, but others see it as a true consensual marriage, and there are elements of the story that support both interpretations.) When Hades decided to take a wife, he wanted one who would be worthy of him, and he asked his brother Zeus for one of his daughters. Persephone was very beautiful and unmarried, so Zeus agreed that Hades should take her as his wife. However, Zeus knew that Demeter was very protective of her daughter and would likely not agree to the marriage, since it would take Persephone away from her and to the Underworld. Zeus told Hades that he would have to catch Persephone unaware and take her to his kingdom by force.

One fine spring day, Persephone was out picking flowers with a group of nymphs and the other virgin Goddesses, Artemis and Athena. (In the versions where the marriage was consensual, this outing was actually the preparation for the wedding-Persephone's bachelorette party, so to speak.) Persephone wandered away from her companions, and when she leaned down to pick a narcissus, the earth opened up at her feet and Hades took her to the Underworld. The only witness to the abduction was Helios, God of the Sun.

Back in the meadow, the nymphs realized that Persephone has disappeared and ran to tell Demeter. Demeter started searching for her daughter, but she couldn't find her. Finally, she asked Helios if he had seen her, for she knew that could see all from his place in the sky. Helios told her that he had indeed seen Persephone, and that he had been taken by Hades to be his bride. He also told Demeter that it was Zeus who had given Persephone to Hades and had told him to take her by force.

In grief and anger, Demeter hid herself away from the Gods and, after wandering the world as an old mortal woman, she took refuge in one of her temples. She had stopped doing her job as Goddess of the Earth-all across the world, plants withered and died. This caught the attention of the other Gods, because the mortals could no longer offer them gifts and sacrifices. Zeus sent Iris, Goddess of the rainbow, to persuade Demeter to return to Mount Olympus and her duties, but Demeter refused. One by one, the other Gods went to her, offering gifts and favors, but Demeter would listen to no one, saying that she would remain there until she saw her daughter.

Zeus sent Hermes, messenger of the Gods, to the Underworld to ask Hades to release Persephone. Persephone had been well-treated in the Underworld, acknowledged as its Queen, but she still wanted to go back to her mother. Before she left, Hades gave her the seeds of a pomegranate to eat (the "rape" versions say he tricked her into eating them, and the "consensual" versions say she ate them on purpose). The pomegranate seeds complicated matters, since anyone who had eaten the food of the Underworld would not be able to leave it. Hermes, who was not only a messenger but the God of cunning and contracts, negotiated a deal between Hades and Demeter where Persephone would spend a portion of the year with each of them. This explains the seasons of the year, with spring beginning when Persephone returns to the world above and everything begins to grow, and autumn beginning when she return to the Underworld and her mother grieves for her absence.

Persephone's name, which means "to bring death," is also seen as PERSEPHONEIA, PERSEPHASSA, PHERSEPHASSA, PHERSEPHATTA, and PHERREPHATTA. Epithets associated with her include:

PERSEPHONE AGAUE (noble)

PERSEPHONE AZESIA (one who is sought)

PERSEPHONE BRIMO (terrifying)

PERSEPHONE DAEIRA (knowing one)

PERSEPHONE DEOINE (daughter of Demeter)

PERSEPHONE DESPOINA (mistress)

PERSEPHONE ELEUSINIA (from Eleusis)

PERSEPHONE EPAINE (awesome)

PERSEPHONE HAGNE (pure)

PERSEPHONE HERKYNA (of the stone enclosure)

PERSEPHONE KALLISPHYROS (trim-ankled)

PERSEPHONE KARPOPHORUS (bringer of fruit)

PERSEPHONE KHTHONIA (of the earth)

PERSEPHONE LEPTYNIS (destroyer)

PERSEPHONE MEGALA THEA (great Goddess)

PERSEPHONE MELITODES (sweet as honey)

PERSEPHONE PRAXIDIKE (exacter of justice)

PERSEPHONE PROTOGONE (first-born)

PERSEPHONE SOTEIRA (savior)

PERSEPHONE THESMIA (of the laws)



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Goddess Manasa  

Posted by Stella Clark

Goddess Manasa Image
MANASA is the Hindu Goddess of snakes and poison. She is the sister of Vasuki, King of the snakes, and daughter of Shiva. Shiva accidentally fathered her when some of his semen landed on a statue of a girl that had been carved by Vasuki's mother. When Shiva found out that Manasa was his daughter, he took her home with him, but his wife Chandi took an instant dislike to her. They quarreled back and forth (Chandi even burnt out one of Manasa's eyes), until finally Shiva had to make her leave their home. She married the sage Jaratkaru, but even then Chandi was not finished with her. She advised Manasa to wear snakes on her wedding night, and then threw a frog into the room. The snakes went crazy, and Jaratkaru ran away in fright. He did eventually return, but the damage was done. Manasa was not a happy Goddess.

Despairing that she did not have enough worshippers, Manasa worked to increase her following. One man in particular, Chand Sadagar, refused to worship her. He was a devotee of Shiva and Chandi, and would not turn away from them to Manasa. Manasa vowed to make him pay for his disrespect, and sent her serpents to kill Chand's sons. She ruined his businesses and left him in despair. Finally, at the urging of his wife, Chand offered Manasa a flower, although he did not look at her as he did so. Manasa accepted this token, and restored Chand's sons and fortune to him.

Manasa is always depicted with snakes, usually cobras. Her name means "intention", and she is also known as VISHAHARA (remover of poison).

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Snake Goddess Of Crete  

Posted by Stella Clark

Snake Goddess Of Crete Image
THE MINOAN RELIGION FOCUSED PRIMARILY ON GODDESSES AND HAS BEEN DESCRIBED AS A "MATRIARCHAL" RELIGION. IN ANCIENT TIMES, THE ONLY PEOPLE ALLOWED TO DIVINE THE FUTURE OR TO ACT AS SEERS WERE WOMEN. FURTHERMORE, STATUES OF PRIESTESSES IN MINOAN CULTURE SHOW DEPICT MEN AND WOMEN PARTICIPATING IN THE SAME SPORTS SUCH AS BULL-LEAPING LEADING TO THE BELIEF THAT THAT MEN AND WOMEN HELD EQUAL SOCIAL STATUS. INHERITANCE WAS THOUGHT TO HAVE BEEN MATRILINEAL.

THE "MINOAN SNAKE GODDESS" DOMINATED CRETE, YET NONE OF US KNOW HER NAME. SHE WAS A MOTHER GODDESS, THAT MUCH WE KNOW. SOME SAY SHE WAS A FERTILITY DEITY WHILE OTHERS BELIEVE THAT SHE WAS A HIGH GODDESS AND PRIESTESS, A POWERFUL SORCERESS. SHE WEARS A LONG, FLOUNCED SKIRT AND BARES HER ROUND BREASTS PROUDLY. ON HER HEAD IS A SACRED CAT; IN HER HANDS WRITHE TWO SNAKES. HER AMPLE HIPS ACCENTUATE HER FERTILITY AND HER STARING EYES HINT THAT SHE MAY BE IN A TRANCE. HENCE, IT IS BELIEVED THAT SHE REPRESENTS A FEMALE ORACLE SINCE SNAKES ARE BELIEVED TO HAVE MAGIC POWERS. THUS, THE SNAKE GODDESS REPRESENTS THE FEMININE MYSTERIES AND HOLDS ALL THE MAGICAL POWERS OF THE SERPENT.

Her 3600 year old figure was discovered in the temple of Knossos on the island of Crete. It is dated to before the eruption of Thera, which destroyed the temple. She holds a snake in each uplifted hand, and from Her appearance, it is obvious that She is presiding over an important ceremony. She is truly magnificent.

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