Gods and Goddesses

Deities from various Pantheons

Finding Aphrodite

Aphrodite is the salty sea.
Ocean waters both calm and wild, like the temperament of woman.
She is skinny dipping under the light of a full moon.
The soft caress of water on bare flesh.
The cool kiss of the waves on a hot summer day.
She is drinking from the waters of a sweet mountain stream, invigorating and refreshing.

Aphrodite is the sensual sway of a woman’s body, as she dances to a heavy drumbeat.
She is the curves of a woman, a breast, a hip.
She is her velvet soft skin.

image

Sourced from Pinterest, photographer unknown

Aphrodite is wild sex on a hot summers day.
She is slow and sensual love-making on a warm summer eve.
Skin, sweat, heat and passion.
She is the early stages of love, simmering desire and romance.

Aphrodite is the verdant earth under summer sun.
She is summer flower, the red blush of bottle brush.
I see her in the native flora of Australia, heat and beauty combined.

Aphrodite is the heat of the summer sun on my skin.
She is pure physicality.
Those moments when I feel most in my body.

She is the beat of rhythmic music, enticing me to dance.
She is the overt sexuality of the belly dancer, all skin, breast and swaying hips.
She is movement and the joys of the flesh.
She is the sexuality of all women who have ever been desired

image

Aphrodite is a warm bubblebath by candlelight.
Water on flesh, relaxation, sensuality.

Aphrodite is beauty.
The soft and supple body of the young woman.
The curve of the mother’s belly.
Ample breasts and full hips.

Aphrodite is Venus.
The morning and evening star, a shining jewel on the horizon.
She is the silvery glow of the full moon, the bright promise of the waxing crescent.

Sunlight. Summer. Heat. Passion. Sensuality. Sex. Sweat. Skin. Orgasm. Delight.

Aphrodite is the beauty and pleasures of life.
Both those of our bodies and those of the wonders that surround us.
She is laughter and pure naked joy.
In the best moments of our lives, can Aphrodite be found.
She is among the simple things, the tinkling of a bell in the breeze.
The sweet scent of the rose in full bloom and the velvet touch of a petal.
She is inherent in all things that bring pleasure to our senses.

Aphrodite is woman.
She is the hidden mysteries of the vulva and clitoris, that which brings pleasure and brings forth new life.
She is within all women, to varying degree.
She brings the confidence that comes with wearing beautiful clothes, or fitting into that old pair of jeans again.
The confidence and grace of knowing one’s own beauty, however fleeting.
Aphrodite is within the woman who holds her head eye and struts forth with confidence.
She is us when we are feeling our best, beautiful, confident and knowing we are desired.

 

Aphrodite – Lover Of Laughter

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Aphrodite – Lover Of Laughter

Aphrodite is well-known as the Goddess of Love.
She also goes by the names Lover of Laughter and The Golden One.
I believe these two titles sum up the sparkling energy of Aphrodite, the original Mother Goddess.

Beltane and Litha is the time of the year when the magic of Aphrodite is most strongly felt, when you don’t have to be Pagan to feel her abundant summer energy.
As summer begins, Aphrodite awakens the earth, just as she awakens our spirit.
Her passion can be felt in the lengthening days, the flourishing earth, the growing heat of the sun.
As the roses bloom, so to does the influence and love of Aphrodite.

green-forest-girl-grass-hair-fantasy-wallpaper

As the Goddess of Love, Aphrodite brings peace, compassion and civilization to humanity.
In the southern hemisphere, Litha (or Midsummer) coincides with Christmas celebrations, the so-called time of goodwill and peace on earth.
I believe this harmony of existence stems more from the influence of Aphrodite, than our backwards summer Christmas.
Around this time, approaching the end of the year for most (for Witches, Litha marks the height of the year), people are kinder towards one another, more compassionate to their fellow-man.
No doubt the holiday season contributes to this, but love, peace, compassion and kindness are all qualities inspired by the Goddess of Love.

Aphrodite was born of the sea, springing from a combination of the blood of Ouranos and sea-foam, a child of the heavens and the sea.
After her inception, she washed up upon the shores of Cyprus, a Divine child upon the waves.
Each year, Aphrodite returns to the place of her birth to wash herself clean, restoring her virginity in the waves of her birth.
Because of this process, she can be both sexually active and eternally virginal.

When Aphrodite found her way to Mount Olympus, the home of the Gods, Zeus knew instantly that her arrival would cause problems.
Being so divinely beautiful, there were sure to be arguments and strife, as Gods and Goddesses alike fought for her attentions.
In this Zeus was right, as it is only Athena, Artemis and Hera who are resistant to the womanly charms of Aphrodite.

Hephaestus

Hephaestus

Zeus solved this problem by marrying her off to Hephaestus, God of the Smith.
Hephaestus was an ugly old man and a cripple, he was also kind and of a good nature.
Hephaestus’ calm and gentle demeanor was not enough for a Goddess who worshipped beauty, and she began to stray from her arranged marriage.
Aphrodite and Ares, the God of War, began an affair early on in Aphrodite’s marriage to Hephaestus.
It would seem Aphrodite, like many women, was attracted to the bad boy type, Ares being a bit of a renegade and rebel among the Gods of Olympus.

Aphrodite’s affair with Ares did cause her some problems.
During one of their dalliances they were spotted by Apollo, the Solar God.
Apollo was quick to dob in the pair and Hephaestus quick to act.
He crafted and unbreakable net using his forge and set off to surprise his wayward wife and her lover.
When he came upon them, locked in their lovers embrace, Hephaestus threw his net, capturing them both inside.
He then called upon the other Gods to come and witness Aphrodite in her shame.
The Gods acquiesced and appeared at the bedside of the captured lovers, laughing and pointing, relishing in their shame.

Aphrodite and Ares

Aphrodite and Ares

This public shaming did not stop Ares and Aphrodite, though.
She would go on to bear three children to the God of War; a daughter she named Harmony, and two sons, Fear and Terror.
An interesting combination the two Divinities make, Love and War, to then go on and give birth to Fear, Terror and Harmony.

Though she had many affairs with Ares, the true love of Aphrodite’s life is Adonis, the God of Beauty and Desire.
(Adonis is often portrayed in the modern age, as Cupid).
Adonis’ pregnant mother was turned into a Myrrh tree by the Gods for her own protection.
Born of the tree, Adonis was then left without a Mother to care for him.
Aphrodite came upon the defenceless infant and took him in, giving him a home.
She loved the young God dearly, trusting him only to Persephone to babysit.
Persephone was also enraptured with the beauty of the God, falling in love with him, as had Aphrodite.
When Aphrodite returned to the Underworld to take back the child, the two Goddesses fought viciously over him.
Hearing the great ruckus, Zeus intervened, and settled the argument of the warring Goddesses by splitting the custody of Adonis between them.
Adonis would spend four months of the year above ground with Aphrodite, and four months in the Underworld with Persephone.
The remaining four he could spend as he pleased, though he always chose to stay by the side of Aphrodite.
As Adonis matured into adulthood, everyone was happy with this arrangement.

Aphrodite and Adonis

Aphrodite and Adonis

Adonis loved the thrill of the hunt, spending much of his above ground time engaged in the sport.
Although hunting goes against the nature of the Goddess of Love, she took up the sport to spend time with her beloved.
One day while the pair were out hunting wild boar, Aphrodite tired of the chase and decided to return home.
She pleaded with Adonis not to put himself in danger, that if any boar should show aggression, he should concede and return home to her.
Unfortunately, Adonis did not heed the warning of the Goddess, and when a boar decided to charge him, he stood his ground.
In the scuffle, Adonis was mortally wounded by the boar, ( Who could likely have been a jealous Ares in disguise).
Hearing his cries, Aphrodite rushed back into the forest, returning to find her dying lover, bleeding his last onto the earth.
Aphrodite was too late and was unable to save him.
Adonis again descended to the Underworld, this time his stay was to be permanent.

Death of Adonis

Death of Adonis

A grieving Aphrodite, deeply mourning the loss of her lover, petitioned Zeus that Adonis be returned to her.
Seeing the depth of her grief  Zeus conceded, permitting Adonis to return to the earth, to Aphrodite, for half of the year.
The other half to be spent as a shade in the Underworld.
As such, Adonis is a sacrificial god, his return bringing the delight of Aphrodite upon the earth, his descent bringing her mourning, the annual death and rebirth of the earth.

Aphrodite is the epitome of a fertility Goddess.
She is the original earth Goddess, bringing growth and abundance in her wake.
Wherever she walks, flowers bloom in her wake.
Patriarchy diminished the true nature of Aphrodite, as it did to many of the ancient Goddesses, reducing her to only a Goddess of sex and passion.
Her temples were the home of her sacred prostitutes, where men could go and make love to these priestesses of Aphrodite, symbolically making love to the Goddess herself.
This no doubt pleased Aphrodite, as she loves pleasure in all its forms, but it is sad that this is all she became.
Her aspects of fertility and Mother Goddess buried beneath the sex and passion aspects of the Goddess.

Aphrodite and Adonis

Aphrodite and Adonis

As a Goddess of Love, Aphrodite rules over all things of beauty, love, sex, passion, of friendship, compassion and earthly pleasures.
She is playful, affectionate and loving.
She brings passion and desire to a marriage, renewing relationships gone stale, breathing the energy of young love into our hearts and souls.
Aphrodite can return us to the spirit of our youth, returning a sense of wonder, discovery and joy to our lives.
She enjoys our human and material pleasures, looking after your body and pampering yourself pleases Aphrodite.
Her Sabbats of Beltane and Midsummer are a time of laughter, joy, friendship, dancing and wild abandon.
All these things are that which please Aphrodite.

Love has the power to change our lives, and Aphrodite changes our hearts and our souls with love and compassion.

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Correspondences Of Aphrodite:

Colors: 

  • Pink
  • Red
  • White
  • Gold

Symbols:

  • Morning and Evening Star
  • Venus
  • Hand Mirror
  • Sea Shells
  • Ocean
  • Roses
  • All Aphrodisiacs

Animals:

  • Dolphin
  • Goat
  • Swan
  • Goose
  • Dove
  • Birds In General

Crystals:

Moon Phase:

  • Waxing
  • Full

Seasons & Sabbats:

  • Spring
  • Summer
  • Beltane
  • Litha ( Midsummer Solstice)

Herbs & Plants:

  • Rose
  • Jasmine
  • Lily
  • Frankincense
  • Hyacinth
  • Apple
  • Pomegranate

Offerings:

  • Rose and Rose Petals
  • Red Wine
  • Honey
  • Gold
  • Gold Jewellery

 

Finding Aphrodite

 

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Herne the Hunter: a short story

Just had to share this with you, a great tale of Herne the Hunter.

Herne the Hunter: a short story.

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Persephone

P is for Persephone, Maiden of Spring and Queen of the Dead.

Known also as Kore, young maiden, or Proserpina, by the Romans.

persephonemaidenPersephone led a peaceful and quiet life, up until her kidnapping.

Though, due to her great beauty, she was highly sought after as a consort, her Mother, Demeter, sheltered her much-loved Daughter and kept her far away from Olympus.

Hermes, Ares, Apollo and Hephaestus had all tried their hand with Persephone, but Demeter had rejected their advances on her Daughter’s behalf.

Demeter and Persephone were earthly Goddesses, preferring to keep their own company and live among the wilds of nature.

Persephone, walking ahead of her Mother, bought the growth of Spring upon the land.

 

The peaceful existence of Mother and Daughter came to an end, when unbeknownst to them both, a deal was struck between Hades and Zeus, Persephone’s Father.

Zeus agreed that Hades may take Persephone as his Wife, and the two plotted together to make this happen.

persephoneflowers

Zeus had laid some beautiful flowers in a meadow, in order to lure Persephone to the trap.

The most beautiful flower, of one hundred, sweetly scented petals, laid in wait for a girl “of a flowers beauty”.

Persephone came upon this garden of allure, while out picking flowers with Artemis and some nymphs.

When she saw the beautiful flower, she reached out to pick it.

The moment her hands touched its stem, the earth opened up beneath her and Hades grabbed hold of the lovely Maiden, dragging her down into The Underworld.

Despite being in company, the abduction happened so quickly,  that none of Persephone’ companions saw it happen.

The only witnesses to the kidnapping was Helios, the Sun God, and the Goddess Hecate, who heard Persephone’s cries for help from her cave.

Demeter was frantic when she discovered her Daughter missing, and fell into a deep depression.

She was furious at the nymphs that had been with her Daughter, and had not intervened.

In punishment, Demeter turned them into the Sirens.

 

On the tenth day of Demeter’s search, Hekate came to her and told her that though she had not seen the abduction, she had heard the girl’s cries.

Hekate suggested approaching Helios, to see what he knew of the disappearance.

Helios told the two Goddesses all he knew, the abduction, the plot and the player’s behind it.

Helios also suggested to Demeter that she leave things as they were, that Hades was a powerful Lord of many and that he would make a good Husband for her Daughter.

Demeter did not, could not, accept this, so she took her plight to Zeus.

Zeus too, refused to return Persephone, arguing that Hades was the right match for the Maiden Goddess.

persephone and hades

Demeter went away with a heavy heart and refused to fertilize the Earth.

The seasons came to a standstill, plant life withered and died.

It wasn’t until Zeus tired of the cries of the hungry mortals below, that he knew he had to right the situation.

Hekate, who is at home in The Underworld, was sent to retrieve Persephone, but Hades, unwilling to relinquish his beautiful new bride, had a trick up his sleeve.

Before he released The Maiden to Hecate, he tricked her into eating four pomegranate seeds, one for each month that she would have to return to him.

ER-Skull-and-Pomegranates

So, although Persephone was returned to her mother, she was bound to return to The Underworld for four months of every year.

When Mother and Daughter are together, the Earth grows and flourishes, food is abundant.

Every year, when Persephone returns to her Husband, the earth withers and dies.

The ascent and descent of Persephone brings us the changing seasons.

awakening

Hekate became close to the two Goddesses during their time of need.

When it is time for Persephone to descend to The Underworld, Hekate bears her torches and lights the way forward for the young Goddess.

On the return journey, Hekate leads the way to the surface.

Though, not only does Hekate walk in front of Persephone, as her guide, she also follows up from behind, protecting her from any harm.

Hekate guides Persephone, not only in her travels, but offering guidance on the ways of The Underworld, on ruling over the souls of the dead, as well.

Hekate is a guide, protector and friend of Persephone, in both her light and dark aspects.

This is also where the Triple Goddess of Persephone, Demeter and Hekate springs from.

hekate and persephone

During the Spring and Summer, Persephone’s time above ground, she is the Maiden.

She is innocence, virtue and purity.

During the Autumn and Winter, she is the Queen of the Dead, a Dark Goddess, who shows no mercy.

Only once, was her heart moved, when Orpheus came to King and Queen, to beg for the return of his beloved.

Persephone granted his wish.

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Persephone is also a character in the story of Adonis.

When Adonis was born, Aphrodite, Goddess of Love and Lust, took him under her wing, though she had her own agenda.

She was so enamoured with Adonis’ unearthly beauty, that she planned to seduce him.

Aphrodite gave him to Persephone to watch over him for a while, but Persephone also became entranced with his great beauty and refused to give him back.

The two Goddess fought bitterly over this exquisite beauty.

Their argument was eventually settled by Zeus, with Adonis spending four months with Aphrodite, four with Persephone and four on his own.

hades and Persephone

There is a belief that Persephone ate of the pomegranate seeds of her own free will, that she was a willing consort to the Lord of the Underworld, his Bride of Death.

Either way, each Winter, she descends to The Underworld and takes her throne beside her King.

Here she presides over the dead, her stoney gaze turned upon her shared Kingdom and the shades of the dead.

As Underworld Queen, she is also Queen of the Erinyes, sending them out from the Underworld, to fulfill curses made in her name.

Persephone is light and dark, life and death, holder of the Mysteries.

 

Symbols Of Persephone:
  • Spring
  • Spring Growth
  • Flowers
  • Waterfalls
  • Rivers
  • Springs

Animals:

  • Bats
  • Rams
  • Parrots and talking birds
  • Monkeys

Plants:

  • Asphodel
  • Pomegranate
  • White Rose
  • Narcissus
  • Willow Tree
  • Lily
  • Ivy
  • Lily of the Valley
  • Maidenhair Fern
  • Daisy
  • Lavender
  • Mint
  • Aconite
  • Spring Flowers

Incense / Oils:

  • Floral Scents
  • Jasmine
  • Narcissus
  • Bergamot
  • Hyacinth
  • Frangipani

Gems / Metals:

  • Crystal
  • Quartz
  • Agate
  • Onyx
  • Pink Tourmaline
  • Sapphire
  • Obsidian

Colours:

  • White
  • Black
  • Light Green
  • Purple
  • Light Blue

Demeter and Persephone

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Prometheus

P is for Prometheus.

 

Heinrichfueger1817PrometheusFire

Prometheus is the Titan God who brought fire to mankind.

He also brought to us the art of Crafts, which he himself invented.

But before these things, Prometheus created mankind.

 

Born of Iapetus and Clymene, Prometheus was a bit of a rebel.

He scorned the Gods and ridiculed Zeus.

Though, during the Titanomachy (A war between the Old Gods and the new), he was one of the Titans that fought alongside the Gods.

 

Prometheus’ trouble started with the creation of mankind.

Under the orders of Cronos, Prometheus and his brother, Epimetheus, carefully crafted creatures from clay, which they made in the image of The Gods.

Athena then took the figures and breathed life into them, thus creating man.

Epimetheus’ creations became the beasts of the wild, and when given life, turned on their creator and savagely attacked him.

man

Zeus was not at all happy with these creations and forbid Prometheus teaching them the ways of civilization, so mankind was left in a very primitive state.

A meeting was set between The Gods and man, in order to set some ground rules.

Firstly, Zeus demanded sacrifice from these new beings.

 

Trying to lend a hand to his beloved creations, Prometheus slew an ox, and divided the spoils into two piles.

In one pile he took the meat and most of the fat and covered it with the awful looking stomach and entrails, in the other he laid the bones and dressed them artfully with the remaining fat.

Zeus saw through this trickery and decided to turn it into his gain.

He knew if he picked the pile of bones, he would then have an excuse to vent his anger onto man and in doing so, get back at Prometheus for creating them in the first place.

So Zeus chose the pile of bones.

(This is also where the origin of sacrifice comes from, where the humans get the meat and the Gods the bones.)

Zeus now had an excuse to be angry, now that mankind had tricked him, and he denied them the secret of fire.

early_neanderthal_man

Prometheus loved his creations, and it hurt his heart to watch them shivering and cowering throughout the winter and dark of night.

He made the decision to go against Zeus and help mankind to better themselves.

This was to be a big mistake, for him at least.

 

One night, while The Gods slept, Prometheus crept into the workshop of Hephaestus, and stole the fire from his forge.

He hid the flame inside the hollow of his staff and set out to Earth from Olympus, where he gave this wonderful gift to his loved creations.

No longer cold, hungry and focused only on survival, mankind began a path to enlightenment and civilization.

This treachery made Zeus furious, as one God cannot take back what another has given and he now took out his anger on Prometheus as well as mankind.

For mankind, he cursed them to a life of suffering and torment, such evil that they would long for death.

For Prometheus he devised a horrendous torture.

Prom and eagle

Zeus had Prometheus carried to Mount Caucasus and chained to a rock.

There, he set upon him an eagle, by the name of Ethon.

Thus began 30 000 years of torment for the Titan God.

Ethon would spend the day tearing Prometheus apart and picking at his liver.

At night he would cease the torture, allowing Prometheus to heal and regenerate.

The next day, the tearing and rending would begin anew.

 

This would have been the eternal fate of poor Prometheus, had not Heracles come along, on one of his twelve labors.

Heracles shot the eagle with an arrow, ending the torment of the Titan.

The years had calmed Zeus’ anger and he now invited Prometheus to return to Olympus, on condition that he still carried the rock he had been chained to.

So even though Prometheus had been freed, he carried with him always the weight of his crime.

A-Herc-Prometheus

But Zeus was not yet finished with mankind.

He asked Hephaestus to collect and mingle together the best and worst of life experience.

Mud and pure snow, the love of a mother and the savagery of the beast, the bloom of a rose and poisonous venom, all these things and more did Hephaestus forge together.

This creation of love and hate was then molded into substance and given the shape of a girl.

Zeus took this model and breathed life into her.

She held the beauty of  a Goddess, yet contained all that Hephaestus had mixed together to create her.

Zeus gave her the name of Pandora.

 

Zeus sent this beautiful creation to Prometheus’ brother, Epimetheus, Creator of Beasts, and he quickly fell in love with this beautiful woman.

At their wedding the Gods showered them with gifts, among them, a box, given by Zeus, with instruction that it may never be opened.

Unfortunately, Pandora was also endowed with an innate sense of curiosity.

It soon got the better of her and she opened the box, unleashing all the sadness and horror known to man.

pandora

Realizing what she had unleashed, Pandora quickly closed the box, trapping the last thing it contained inside.

That thing was Hope, and hope remained trapped in the box, withheld from mankind, until Prometheus bestowed his last kindness upon man.

Prometheus opened the box, for the second and final time, and freed Hope.

 

The following video is a Wendy Rule song, entitled Prometheus.

Wendy Rule is an Australian Witch, with a very enchanting voice.

This song covers the torment of Prometheus, capturing the feel of the myth perfectly.

Enjoy..

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Categories: Gods and Goddesses, Mythology, Pagan Blog Project | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Hekate

H is for Hekate.
image
I started out writing this post as I usually do for Gods, Goddessess and Mythology, researching and writing a few myths and correspondences.
But for Hekate, my Matron Goddess, this didn’t feel right.
So, this post is written and sourced from my own experience with Hekate.

Hekate, Goddess of Crossroads, Magic, Witchcraft, The Night, Moon, Ghosts and Necromancy.
Hekate is guardian of the mysteries, of night-wandering souls, protector of the household and the newly born.
She holds sway over the three domains of heaven, earth and sea.
Hekate is a Goddess of great power, both feared and revered, and the matron Goddess of many a witch.
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Hekate’s appeal to witches, both modern and ancient, lies in the vast reach of her powers.
Her Priestesses, Circe and Medea, were bestowed with the ability to raise the dead, to curse and to heal.
In modern practise, Hekate’s aspect as guide holds her in high stead.
With her torches held aloft, she guides one through the darkness and into the light, from ignorance to enlightenment.
She is a ‘Dark Goddess’, but is not of the darkness, she is the bearer of light within that darkness.

Hekate is also a Goddess of change.
She facilitates the biggest of our life changes, from childbirth, to death and rebirth.
Hekate guides departed souls towards their destination in the Underworld.
She also holds the power to lead them out, to accompany her on her night wanderings.
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In my personal experience, Hekate is a protector of animals, especially dogs.
I have heard many an experience of a long-missing dog, returned safely home, after it’s owner has petitioned Hekate.
I regularly ask her blessings for my own, much-loved, canine companion.
I have also had a strange experience with the return of a cat, missing from home, when a fierce storm suddenly struck.
This cat, Garri, never strays far from the house, so I was worried she had become lost.
I sat at my altar, and petitioned Hekate for the safe return of the cat.
Not five minutes later, I sense something, so open the door.
Here is the cat, on the doorstep, not a drop of rain on her, despite the downpour and everything else being soaked.
I had to give my thanks that day!

I love working with Hekate, she has provided me with some awe-inspiring encounters.
She is not a shy Goddess, her presence is always strongly felt.
Some encounters, particularly during the dark moon, are very intense.
During the waxing and full moon, her presence is lighter, sometimes even playful.
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Being my ‘Lady Of The Altar’, I give my devotions to Hekate on a daily basis.
Since she first appeared to me, my life has certainly changed for the better.
Like a lot of Hekate’s devotees, she came to me during a time of crisis, of being ‘at the crossroads’, so to speak.
In times of darkness, she shines her torches and leads the way out, and this she has done for me.

Hekate does tend to have a bad reputation, and I don’t really understand this.
I have had some pretty intense experiences with her, sometimes in meditation, but more often in Shamanic work.
Sometimes these encounters can be frightening, but there is always a purpose to it, I have gained something valuable, some deep insight or knowledge.
Hekate tends to work inwardly, and a lot of times, with aspects of ourselves we may not necessarily like.
But how can we grow and change for the better if we don’t acknowledge and face the darkest aspects of ourselves?
Don’t be frightened away, but look within, find the purpose among the horrible and you will be rewarded for it.
More often, she comes to me more gently, a soft knowing, a flash of intuition, a gut feeling.
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Hekate herself is solitary.
So she is the perfect guide for the solitary witch, leading them on towards great understanding.
She holds the keys to the mysteries, to knowledge of the self and to the esoteric.
I have a ‘Charge of The Dark Goddess’ in my Book of Shadows, which states, “Close your eyes my child and call to me, for I am there, within your darkness”.
The truth of Hekate is held within this statement.
She resides within, a guide of the heart and the soul, of walking our own path, of finding our way through the darkness and towards the light.
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Nyx – Goddess of Night

N is for Nyx, the Goddess of Night and Darkness.
In fact, Nyx is the night.

image

Nyx is very old, even in the realm of the Gods.
She was born even before her sister, Gaia, the very Earth itself.
An elemental Goddess, she was born of Air and fathered by Chaos.

“At the beginning there was only Khaos (Air), Nyx (Night), Dark Erebus (Darkness) and deep Tartarus.
Black winged Nyx laid a gemless egg in the bosom of the infinite depths of Erebus, and from this sprang Eros with his glittering golden wings.” – Aristophanes

Zeus is said to fear and be held in awe of Nyx, as she is much older and far more powerful than even he, the mighty Ruler of The Gods.
Nyx is the most powerful Goddess in Greek Mythology, dictating to man and Gods alike.

Nyx has spawned a stunning array of offspring, many of the darker variety, and mostly without the help of a God to father them.
She is mother to the Three Fates, The Erinyes, Morpheus (Dreams), Styx (Goddess of the River Styx), Moros (Doom), Nemesis (Vengeance), Deceit, Strife and Pain, just to name a few.
There is also some suggestion that Nyx and Erebus are the parents of Charon the Boatman, who guides souls across the river to the gates of the Underworld.
I could write an entire post on the many deities born to Nyx, they are so numerous.
image
Bacchylides names Nyx as the mother of Hecate, though other sources claim her mother as Asteria.
Asteria is the starry sky, so Nyx and Asteria could easily be one and same.
After all, what is night-time without a starry sky?

Nyx also bore two children to Erebus (Darkness), Aither and Hemera, Light and Day respectively.
So, much like Hecate, she may be a Goddess of Darkness, but she bears and brings forth light.

Nyx has been described as the substance of night, a dark veil which blots out the light, night personified.
She appears variously as a dark-winged Goddess, or driving a winged chariot, accompanied by the stars.
Her travelling companions are more of her offspring, Thanatos (Death) and Hypnos (Sleep), it is decided by Nyx as to which one will greet us mere mortals when night falls.

Goddess Hemera - Linuska

Goddess of Day, Hemera – Linuska

Nyx resides in the deepest, darkest bowels of Tartarus, sharing a house with her daughter, Hemera (Day), the pair only crossing paths at the door as they switch positions at dusk and dawn.
Nyx is quite the maternal Goddess, returning home at dawn to care for her numerous offspring.

Nyx is said to enjoy mischief and misdeed, especially those committed under the cover of darkness.
She favours fugitives and thieves, as she is ‘the cover of darkness’ that hides and protects them.
In Homer’s Illiad it is Nyx that protects the spies of the Trojan War, blanketing them in her darkness.

Nyx brings blessing to those that have suffered during the day.
If you have ever said the words “I am so glad today is over”, than you can give thanks to Nyx, as she brings the end of the day and the troubles that go with it.
Nyx brings rest, sleep, dreams and death.
She brings respite and healing.

Nyx-Surrounded-by-Chaos

In my research for this post, I came across these little gems:

Ovid, Metamorphoses 7. 192 ff (trans. Melville) (Roman epic C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
“When she [Selene the Moon] shone in fullest radiance . . . [the witch] Medea . . . went forth alone upon her roaming way, in the deep stillness of the midnight hour . . . Then to the stars she stretched her arms, and thrice she turned about and thrice bedewed her locks with water, thrice a wailing cry she gave, then kneeling on the stony ground, ‘O Nox [Nyx the Night], Mother of Mysteries, and all ye golden Astra (Stars) . . . and thou, divine triceps (three-formed) Hecate . . . and thou, kindly Tellus [Gaia the Earth], who dost for magic potent herbs provide . . . and Di Omnes Noctis (Gods of Night), be with me now! By your enabling power, at my behest . . . the deep earth groan and ghosts rise from their tombs. Thee too, bright Luna [Selene the Moon], I banish, though thy throes the clanging bronze assuage; under my spells even my grandsire’s [Helios the Sun’s] chariot grows pale and Aurora [Eos the Dawn] pales before my poison’s power.”

Ovid, Metamorphoses 10. 403 ff :
“She [the witch Kirke] sprinkled round about her evil drugs and poisonous essences, and out of Erebus and Chaos called Nox (Night) and the Di Nocti (Gods of Night) and poured a prayer with long-drawn wailing cries to Hecate. The woods (wonder of wonders!) leapt away, a groan came from the ground, the bushes blanched, the spattered sward was soaked with gouts of blood, stones brayed and bellowed, dogs began to bark, black snakes swarmed on the soil and ghostly shapes of silent spirits floated through the air.”

Both these passages demonstrate the strong connections between Nyx and Hecate.
I believe this confirms Hecate’s maternal parentage, and even mentions Astra and Nix as closely connected.

Nyx - violettenigma

Nyx – violettenigma

Categories: Gods and Goddesses, Pagan Blog Project, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Lilith

L is for Lilith.

lilith

Lilith is well-known as a female demon, personally I think she was an independent and willful woman, qualities not highly prized by early Christian and Jewish religions.

 

It would seem that two different versions of the bible, or Book of Genesis, contradict each other.

The first version states that God created man and woman at the same time.

The second, the one most people are familiar with, states that God created Adam first and later created woman from his rib.

Hmm, bit of a difference in these versions.

 

One solution the Jewish Rabbi’s came up with, was to give Adam two wives, the first being Lilith.

Lilith was a bit before her time here.

A modern, empowered and independent woman, she refused to submit to Adam’s will, to lie down and be the submissive plaything that he demanded.

Lilith and Adam by Dargonelez

Lilith and Adam by Dargonelez

Lilith soon tired of his nagging and demands, she spread her wings and flew right out of The Garden of Eden, leaving Adam to his own devices.

She set up her home by the Red Sea, where she took demons as her lovers.

She was apparently very fertile too, giving birth to one hundred children each and every day!

 

Of course, Adam was not pleased with this development, so he took his complaints of this flighty woman straight to God.

Upon hearing this news, God sent three of his angels to retrieve the absconded Lilith.

No way was she going back to that!

She refused the demands of the angels, cursed their very existence, and remained, defiantly, in her home by the Red Sea, with her lovers and her children.

Pregnant Lilith By Mani Price

Pregnant Lilith By Mani Price

Upon the return of the angels and their news, God was furious.

If Lilith would not return to Adam and The Garden, he would take away every last one of her children.

In her anger at losing her children, Lilith devoted herself to kidnapping, or strangling, the newborns of others, her fury directed especially towards boys.

She would also terrorize mothers-to-be as they were in labor.

Her theory being, if she couldn’t have her children, then no one else would have theirs either.

 

The one catch of her new sport, should she see the angels themselves, or amulets bearing their names, she would leave the mother and child unharmed.

Amulets placed in the corners of a nursery of birthing room are said to repel the vengeful Lilith.

There is a superstition, that if a child laughs in its sleep, it is a sign that Lilith is present.

A tap on the nose of the child, will make her retreat.

 

Lilith is also used as an excuse for Christian men who experience wet dreams.

Lilith, as succubus, must have seduced them in their sleep!

If she succeeds in her seduction, she will become pregnant with a demonic son.

These men took to sleeping with their hands cupped over their genitals, clutching a cross, in order to repeal Lilith’s nocturnal advances.

Succubus by Arsenal21

Succubus by Arsenal21

So, Lilith is left to seduce her demons and pious men, propagating her demonic children at every chance.

Lilith must surely be one busy woman, as, in Medieval Europe, she is said to be the wife of Satan.

She is also known to have a lover, by the name of Samael, a son of god.

To Samael, Lilith bore three half-god, half-human children, the Nephilim.

 

Adam was given a more acceptable replacement, the docile and submissive Eve. But again he had his problems, when his second wife ate the forbidden fruit.

But that’s another story, and one most are familiar with.

 

There is an interesting parallel between the story of Lilith and The Lamia, of Greek Myth.

The Lamia are demonic nymphs of the Underworld, who appear as beautiful women.

The Lamia were considered to be part of Hekate’s crew.

Their purpose was to steal the souls of children and young, good-looking men.

This is likely the beginnings of the myth of the Succubi.

 

 

The roots of Lilith go back much further than her Hebrew demonization.

She carries similarities to Goddesses of many myths and beliefs.

She could have originally been a Babylonian Goddess, where she ruled primal wisdom, and was a Goddess of Animals, again similar to Hekate.

Another suggestion is that, alongside Persephone and Hekate, she guards the gates of the Underworld.

Knowledge

Knowledge

In researching this article, I came across suggestion that Lilith gained great knowledge from Samael and used it to become the first witch.

But I also can’t find anything that really substantiates this.

 

I think Lilith is a great example of the demonization of Goddesses, and women in general, by the church.

With ancient deities, such as Lilith, their original stories and mythologies become lost and they are stuck with the title of demon.

 

Lilith corresponds to the element of Air and the Waning Moon.

Her animal is the Owl and Snake.

 

Invoke Lilith for work with:

Shape-shifting or Skin Walking, Sex Magick and Erotic Dreams. 

Lilith by Notvitruvian

Lilith by Notvitruvian

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Categories: Gods and Goddesses, Mythology, Pagan Blog Project | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Boreas – The North Wind

I am Boreas, the Wind of the North.

Boreas - Old Man Winter

Boreas – Old Man Winter

I am the bitter chill of mid-winters night,
The snow which falls through the darkness,
frost settled on frozen and arid ground.

I am the frigid northern wind, which howls around the eaves.
I am the grass that crackles beneath your step, brittle ice on a winter night.

I am old age.
The grey which streaks your hair,
The arthritis creeping into your joints.
I am the wrinkle on your brow,
The unease of your mortality.

I am midnight.
The deep darkness of night, the longest of the year.
I am the deep stillness of that night, the quiet of the earth.

I am Yule.
The Winter Solstice, my darkness never wanes.
I am the earth, sleeping, barren, unforgiving.

I am the Earth.
The subterranean stillness, the soil which cloaks you in death.
I am stillness, peace, the depths of the unchartered cave.

boreas

I am North.
I am winter.
I am Earth.
I am darkness.
I am midnight.
I am old age.

I am Boreas, the Wind of the North.

 

Categories: Gods and Goddesses, Mythology, The Elements | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Amethyst

I only found this myth today, and have to share it with you.

Bacchus

Bacchus

Bacchus, the God of Wine and Intoxication, had fallen under the spell of Diana, Goddess of the Hunt.

Bacchus was certainly trying his luck here, as Diana is a virgin Goddess, holding sacred her chastity.

Diana

Diana

Bacchus made his advances towards the beautiful Goddess, and was swiftly rebuked.

This made the God furious, so he turned to his beloved wine, quickly reaching a rolling state of drunkenness.

The drunker he became the more his anger boiled.

Drunk and plotting revenge, Bacchus swore that the next mortal maiden who crossed his path, he would put to death.

 

Amethyst

Amethyst

A sweet young maiden, by the name of Amethyst was making her way to the altar of Diana.

Bacchus marked her for his revenge and set loose a pair of ravening tigers to swiftly dispatch the girl.

As the tigers approached her, Amethyst asked her Goddess for protection against the maddened beasts.

tiger-face-snarl-hiss-close-up_20246_990x742

Diana is the Goddess of the Hunt, but even she had no time to draw her bow.

Thinking quickly, she transformed Amethyst into a crystal, bright, clear and sparkling.

 

Upon Amethyst’s transformation, Bacchus had a moment of clarity, realising that the mortal girl had nothing to do with his grudge against Diana.

Full of remorse, he got on his knees before the crystal and begged for Amethyst’s forgiveness.

He then took his sacred wine and poured a libation over the sparkling gem.

The wine soaked the crystal, turning it a beautiful shade of purple.

Amethyst Cluster

Amethyst Cluster

Bacchus had previously imbibed most of the wine, and the libation he poured did not soak the crystal completely.

This is why Amethyst is often clear at the base and purple on top.

It is said that Amethyst prevents drunkenness, as the wine is already contained within the crystal.

 

Categories: Gods and Goddesses, Mythology | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

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