Tag Archive: foresight


Goddess Themis

“Libra” by *moonmomma

“Themis’s themes are justice, equity, reason, morality, organization, foresight, karma and truth. Her symbols are balanced items and scales. In Greek tradition, Themis personifies the law in both spirit and deed. She regulates karmic order in the cosmos and presides over matters of moral judgment. Today, Themis strengthens the voice of consciousness and the gift of foresight within us, becoming a sound counsellor in difficult decisions and offering balanced perspectives.

Bearing in mind Themis’s legal theme, tend to any pressing legal matters today. If a court matter is pending, check on it. If you need to catch up on past-due parking tickets, do so. Themis will help resolve any matter of law in the most equitable manner possible.

Should you actually have to go to court today, carry an image of a scale or any balanced geometric figure in your pocket to invite Her assistance. Themis lives in just actions and orderliness, so just by treating people fairly and organizing your day, you invoke Her presence.

Throughout the day, take an extra moment to consider the repercussions of your actions, both mundanely and spiritually. Consider this a time to balance your karmic check book and make right some wrongs in your life. Also, be honest in your words and thoughts today. This honors and pleases this Goddess greatly.”

(Patricia Telesco, “365 Goddess: a daily guide to the magic and inspiration of the goddess”.)

“Themis” by Michele-lee Phelan

The ‘steadfast one,’ the daughter of Gaia, was the earth Goddess personified as an unshakable power.  By Homer‘s time, She had come to signify a second powerful steadfastness: the social contract among people living on the earth (similarly Fides).  One of the most ancient and most hallowed of Goddesses, Themis later became a vague and abstract personality.  Yet evidence of Her original precedence is suggested: no Olympian gathering could take palace unless She called it, and neither could any divinity lift the cup of nectar before She had drunk.

In the language of Her people, themis was a common as well as a proper noun, the former indicating the power of convention, of whatever is fixed in society as steadfastly as the earth beneath us.  The personification of such social cohesion, Themis was shown bearing a pair of scales; as the fruitful earth, She was shown holding the cornucopia.  She was mother of the seasons, or Horae, Goddesses who determined the proper moment for the fruitful earth’s budding and exhaustion, and the proper times as well for human events.  One of Themis’ daughters, the fierce Dike, was Her own maiden self, a stern, uncompromising virgin.

Her other children were the Horai [Eunomia (‘lawful order’), Dike (‘justice’), and Irene (‘peace’)] and the Moirai (the spinning, allotting and cutting fate Goddesses).

Themis ruled prophesy, for She knew human nature and the nature of human society and so could predict the outcome of any struggle; thus She shared with Mother Gaia the famous Delphic Oracle.  For Her worship, She demanded group dancing, the symbol of group’s bonding through graceful action.  Eldest of Greek Goddesses, She was the first to whom temples were built, for before Her there was no human community to offer worship” (Monaghan, p. 294 – 295).

“The only consort for Themis mentioned in the sources below is Zeus.

“Justitia” by Howard David Johnson

A Roman equivalent of one aspect of Hellenic Themis, as the personification of the divine rightness of law, was Iustitia (Anglicized as Justitia). Her origins are in civic abstractions of a Roman mindset, rather than archaic mythology, so drawing comparisons is not fruitful. [Themis is] portrayed as an impassive woman, holding scales and a double-edged sword (sometimes a cornucopia), and since the 16th century usually shown blindfolded.” [1]

Themis armed with sword and balance scales (Legislative Council Building, Central, Hong Kong)

 

 

Sources:

Monaghan, Patricia. The New Book of Goddesses and Heroines, “Themis”.

Wikipedia, “Themis“.

 

 

Suggested Links:

Artesia. Goddessschool.com, “Themis: Voice of the Earth“.

Donleavy, Pamela & Ann Shearer. From Myth to Modern Healing: Themis: Goddess of Heart-Soul, Justice and Reconciliation.

Gill, N.S. Ancienthistory.about.com, “Lady Justice“.

Goddess-guide.com, “Themis the Greek Goddess“.

Harrison, Jane Ellen. Themis: A Study of the Social Origins of Greek Religion.

Theoi.com, “Themis“.

Took, Thalia. The Obscure Goddess Online Directory, “The Camenae“.

Wikipedia, “Lady Justice“.

Willow Myst. Order of the White Moon, “Themis“.

Autumnus

“Autumn Nymph” by ~limch

“Autumnus’s themes are the harvest, abundance, thankfulness, balance, wisdom, foresight and Autumn. Her symbols are fall leaves and harvested items. This is the Roman personification of the autumn season. While the actual gender of this being is often left to the imagination, the strong connection with the harvest, wines, and fruits intimates a powerful earth Goddess, blossoming with Her seasonal array.

In magic traditions, today is a time to appreciate the earth’s abundance somewhat cautiously. After this festival, the daylight hours will begin to wane, meaning wise prudence is called for. So while we reap Autumnus’s bounty from the sowing season, we also begin prudently planning.

Decorate your dining table or sacred space with colorful autumn leaves today. Enjoy as many harvested fruits and vegetables (perhaps from a farmer’s market) as possible to internalize Autumnus’s prosperous, wise energy. Leave out a libation of wine or grape juice for the Goddess to please Her and to encourage continuing providence when Her stores begin to wane.

For children, today is a perfect time to have a leaf-raking party in which they figuratively gather what they need from the Goddess, then play happily in Her energy afterward by jumping in the piles.”

(Patricia Telesco, “365 Goddess: a daily guide to the magic and inspiration of the goddess”.)

For today’s entry, the only thing I could find on “Autumnus” comes from Wikipedia in which it states, “The word autumn comes from the Old French word autompne (automne in modern French), and was later normalised to the original Latin word autumnus.” [1]  I also found that Autumnus was defined as “personification; portrayed as mature and manly.” [2]  Hhmm, not very Goddess oriented, huh?

So, what I would like for you to do today is reflect on Autumn.  What does it mean to you?  What does it make you think of?  How does it make you feel?  What do you associate with Autumn?  I must admit that this is my FAVORITE time of year.  I love to watch and take in the splendor of the season’s transformation as the trees begin to change from green to bright reds, oranges and yellows.  I love the smell of the leaves on the ground, the smell of wood smoke rising from a bonfire, the crisp nights that make you want to snuggle up under a warm blanket in front of a crackling fire with a cup of hot cocoa or mulled cider.  I love the frosty mornings and the crunch of the leaves and twigs under my feet.  I love the sound of the crickets and the geese as they make their way south.  I love the harvest; the corn, the grains, the apples and fruits of the season and the smells of spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves.

Or, does it make you feel sad as it marks the approach of the dark season, knowing that death and winter are on the horizon?  Does it make you miss the heat, beauty and energy of summer?  Does it make you feel anxious knowing that you only have so long to prepare and gather up and store what you need before the first snow begins to fall to make it through the long, cold and dark winter looming ahead?

Photo by Lauren Withrow

Regardless of how you view Fall, Autumnus’s spirit lives and resides in it, in all of it – everything from the beauty of the changing leaves, the romance and activity of the harvest to the dull, dried out dead stalks, death and the peaceful quietude that falls upon the land once all has been reaped, has fallen and died.

 

 

 

Sources:

Encyclopedia2.thefreedictionary.com, “Autumnus“.

Wikipedia, “Autumn“.

 

 

Suggested Links:

Aloi, Peg. Witchvox.com, “You Call it the Autumn Equinox, We Call it Mabon“.

Wigington, Patti. Paganwiccan.about.com, “All About Mabon, the Autumn Equinox – What is Mabon?

Goddess Voluspa

“Crone Ceremony: Voluspa” by Willow Arlenea

“Voluspa’s themes are foresight, history, perspective, divination and time. Her symbols are stories and storybooks.  This Nordic Goddess was born before all things, with the knowledge of all time within Her. When asked to tell a tale to the gods, She recounted history, including the gods’ downfall. To commemorate this, wise women and seers in the northern climes are sill sometimes called Voluspa.  Voluspa teaches us the value of farsightedness and of remembering our history. We cannot know where we’re going if we don’t remember where we came from.

An old festival in Iceland known as the Islendingadagurinn [Icelandic Festival of Manitoba] preserves Voluspa’s energy by recounting local heritage and custom in a public forum including theater, singing, writing and costumes. For our adaptation, I suggest taking out or working on a family tree, or perhaps a personal journal. Read over the chronicles of people from your ethnic background and honor their lives in some appropriate manner (perhaps by lighting a candle). Voluspa lives in these moments and at any time that we give ourselves to commemorating the past.

Alternatively, get out some good storybooks and read! Turn off the TV for a while and enrich you imagination with the words of bards who keep Voluspa’s power alive in the world. Especially read to children so they can learn of this Goddess’s wonders.”

(Patricia Telesco, “365 Goddess: a daily guide to the magic and inspiration of the goddess”.)

The seeress speaks her prophecy from a 19th century Swedish translation of the Poetic Edda. Illustration by Carl Larsson.

Patricia Monaghan tells us that “[Voluspa’s] name, or the similar word volvawas used of wise women in Scandinavia.  The most famous seer in Norse legend was the one for whom the poem Völuspá is named.  Born before this world began, Voluspa was asked to tell the history of the world.  Once started, She did not stop, even though the gods did not wish to hear of their own death at Ragnarok, the doom of the gods” (p. 312).

“Odin and the Völva” by Lorenz Frølich

“The poem [Völuspá] starts with the völva requesting silence from ‘the sons of Heimdallr‘ (human beings) and asking Odin whether he wants Her to recite ancient lore. She says She remembers giants born in antiquity who reared Her.

She then goes on to relate a creation myth; the world was empty until the sons of Burr lifted the earth out of the sea. The Æsir then established order in the cosmos by finding places for the sun, the moon and the stars, thereby starting the cycle of day and night. A golden age ensued where the Æsir had plenty of gold and happily constructed temples and made tools. But then three mighty giant maidens came from Jötunheimr and the golden age came to an end. The Æsir then created the dwarves, of whom Mótsognir and Durinn are the mightiest.

At this point ten of the poem’s stanzas are over and six stanzas ensue which contain names of dwarves. This section, sometimes called ‘Dvergatal’ (‘Catalogue of Dwarves’), is usually considered an interpolation and sometimes omitted by editors and translators.

After the ‘Dvergatal’, the creation of the first man and woman are recounted and Yggdrasill, the world-tree, is described. The seer recalls the events that led to the first ever war, and what occurred in the struggle between the Æsir and Vanir.

The seeress then reveals to Odin that She knows some of his own secrets, of what he sacrificed of himself in pursuit of knowledge. She tells him She knows where his eye is hidden and how he gave it up in exchange for knowledge. She asks him in several refrains if he understands, or if he would like to hear more.

“THE DUSK OF THE GODS” by P. N. Arbo

The seeress goes on to describe the slaying of Baldr, best and fairest of the gods and the enmity of Loki, and of others. Then She prophesies the destruction of the gods where fire and flood overwhelm heaven and earth as the gods fight their final battles with their enemies. This is the ‘fate of the gods’ – Ragnarök. She describes the summons to battle, the deaths of many of the gods and how Odin, himself, is slain.

Finally a beautiful reborn world will rise from the ashes of death and destruction where Baldr will live again in a new world where the earth sprouts abundance without sowing seed. A final stanza describes the sudden appearance of Nidhogg the dragon, bearing corpses in his wings, before the seeress emerges from Her trance.

Versions differ, for example Baldr’s return is present in Codex Regius, but absent in others.” [2]

 

 

 

 

Sources:

Monaghan, Patricia. The New Book of Goddesses and Heroines, “Voluspa”.

Wikipedia, “Völuspá“.

 

Suggested Links:

Kodratoff, Yves. Nordic-life.org, “Völuspá“.

Mythencyclopedia.com, “Norse Mythology“.

Sacred-texts.com, “The Poetic Edda: Voluspo“.

Timelessmyths.com, “Norse Creation“.

Wikipedia, “Völva“.

Goddess Thmei

“Maat” by Lisa Hunt

“Thmei’s themes are freedom, justice, honor, divination, balance, equality, foresight and morality. Her symbols are scales or balanced items and ostrich feathers.  This Egyptian Goddess of law and Mother of Virtue watches over human conduct, looking for right action, wise decisions, ethical dealings and just outcomes. On a broader scale, She also tends to matters of Universal Law, that we might learn its patterns, internalize its ideals and then use this awareness throughout the year.  In some instances, Thmei is considered a prophetic Goddess to call on in determining the outcome of any course of action, especially legal ones. Egyptian art depicts Thmei bearing a single ostrich feather, the symbol of truth with self and others.

Celebrate your personal independence and break free from any constraints that seem unjust or unethical, asking Thmei for the power and courage to endure.

To make a Thmei charm that draws equity into all your dealings, find a portable token that, to you, represents balance, harmony and fairness. Put this on your bathroom scale saying,

‘Balance and harmony within this shine,
Thmei, make impartial dealings mine!’

Carry this token with you, or leave it in the area where you feel inequality or discord exists.”

(Patricia Telesco, “365 Goddess: a daily guide to the magic and inspiration of the goddess”.)

The researched information on Thmei today comes from the book entitled The Manners and Customs of the Ancient Egyptians by John Gardner & Sir Wilkinson.  “This Deity had a two-fold character, as Goddess of Truth and of Justice.  Her figure is frequently represented in the hands of the Kings, who present it as a fit offering to the Gods; and many, in their regal titles, are said to love, or to be loved by, Thmei.  A small image of this Goddess was also worn by the chief judge while engaged in listening to the cases brought before them in court; and when the depositions of the two parties and their witnesses had been heard, he touched the successful litigant with the image, in token of the justness of his cause.  A similar emblem was used by the high priest of the Jews; and it is a remarkable fact, that the word Thummim is not only translated ‘truth’, but being a plural or dual word, corresponds to the Egyptian notion of the ‘two Truths’ or the double capacity of this Goddess.

According to some, the Urim and Thummim signify ‘lights and pefection’ or ‘light and truth,’ – which last present a striking analogy to the two figures of Rê and Thmei, in the breast-plate worn by the Egyptians.  And though the resemblance of the Urim and the Uraeus (or basilisk), the symbol of majesty, suggested by Lord Prudhoe, is very remarkable, I am disposed to think the ‘lights,’ Aorim or Urim, more nearly related to the Sun, which is seated in the breast-plate with the figure of Truth.

This Goddess was sometimes represented by two similar figures placed close to each other; or by one figure wearing two ostrich feathers, Her emblem; and sometimes by the two feathers alone, as in the scales of final judgement.  It is to these figures that Plutarch alludes, who he speaks of the two Muses at Hermopolis, under the names of Isis and Justice.  Diodorus describes the chief judge in the sculptures of the tomb of Osymandyas, with the figure of Truth suspended to this neck, with Her eyes closed; and it is worthy of remark, that the same mode of representing the Goddess occurs in the paintings at Thebes, confirming the account of the historian, and establishing Her claims to the character I have given Her.

Her principle occupations were in the lower regions, and She was on earth the cardinal virtue.  For the Ancients considered, that as Truth or Justice influenced men’s conduct towards their neighbours, and tended to maintain that harmony and good will which were most essential for the welfare of society, it was of far greater importance than the the other three,  – Prudence, Temperance, and Fortitude.  These qualities were reflective qualities; and more immediately beneficial to the individual who possessed them, than to those with whom he was in the habit of associating.

As the dead, after the final judgement and admission into the regions of the blessed, bore Her emblem (either the ostrich feather, or the vase which indicated their good deeds, taken from the scales of Truth), and were considered approved or justified by their works, the hieroglyphics of Her name were adopted to signify ‘deceased,’ or in other words, ‘judged’ or ‘justified’.

The same idea may be traced in an expression of Plato’s Gorgias, where, in speaking of the judgements of the dead, Socrates says, ‘sometimes Rhadamanthus, beholding the soul of one who has passed through life with Truth, whether it be of private man, or any other, is filled with admiration, and dismisses that soul to the Islands of the Blessed.  The same is also done by Æacus.’  Indeed, the modern Persian or Arabic expression in relation to the dead is not very dissimilar, which styles them ‘pardoned,’ or ‘to whom the mercy of God has been shown,’ answering to our more simple and matter-of-fact ‘the late,’ or ‘the departed.’

Diodorus mentions a figure of Justice without a head, standing in the lower regions, ‘at the gates of Truth,’ which I have found in the judgement scenes attached to the funeral rituals on the papyri of Thebes.  In one of the subjects of a mummy case in the British Museum, the Goddess occurs under the form of a sceptre (surmounted by an ostrich feather), from which proceed Her two arms, supporting the body of the deceased.  Another figure of the same Goddess, issuing from the mountain, presents him at the same time two emblems, supposed to represent water, or the drink of Heaven.

Thmei was always styled the daughter of the Sun, and sometimes ‘chief’ or ‘Directress of the Gods.’

From Her name the Greeks evidently borrowed their Themis, who was supposed to be the mother of Dikē, or Justice; but the name of the Egyptian city Thmuis does not appear to have been called from the Goddess of Truth.” [1]

“The Goddess Thmei, or Mei, Truth personified, is always represented as a female wearing upon Her head an ostrich-feather; because all the wing-feathers of this bird were considered of equal length, and hence meant ‘true’ or ‘correct’…Thmei is sometimes represented accompanying Thoth, and the native monarchs often presented a small figure of Truth to different deities.” [2]

 

 

Sources:

Arundale, Francis, Joseph Bonomi, & Samuel Birch. Gallery of Antiquities, Selected from the British Museum, “Thmei“, (p. 28).

Gardner, John & Sir Wilkinson. The Manners and Customs of the Ancient Egyptians, “Thmei, Truth or Justice“, (p. 28 – 31).

 

 

Suggested Links:

Bastow, James Austin. A Biblical Dictionary, “Urim and Thummim“, (p. 755).

Encyclopaedia Britannica: A Dictionary of Arts, Science, and General Literature…, “Egypt“, (p.538).

“Oya” by Danilo Lejardi

“Egungun-Oya’s themes are destiny, death, ghosts, divination, foresight and truth. Her symbols are dance and fire.  The Yoruban Mother of the Dead and mistress of spiritual destinies, Egungun-Oya helps us peek into our own futures, being a Goddess of fate. Traditionally She is venerated through folk dances that show Her guiding spirits in the afterlife with the flames of truth in one hand.

As one might expect, the people of Nigeria honor the ancestors on this day, believing that they and Egungun-Oya control the fates of the living. It’s a common custom, therefor, to leave food and gifts for both the deceased and the Goddess today, hoping both will find pleasure in the offering. In your own home, put out pictures of loved ones who have passed on and light a candle in front of these today so that Egungun-Oya’s truth will fill your home. When you light the candle, observe its flame. If it burns out quickly without your assistance, this indicates that you should take care – you’re burning yourself out on too many projects. If it flames up brightly and steadily, anticipate health and longevity. An average-sized flame that burns blue indicates spiritual presences and a normal life span.

To keep any unwanted ghosts out of you house, put a light of any sort in the window, saying,

‘Egungun-Oya is your guide,
return to your sleep and there abide.’

The Goddess will safely guide those spirits back to where they belong.”

(Patricia Telesco, “365 Goddess: a daily guide to the magic and inspiration of the goddess”.)

“Ancestor Spirits” by Willow Arlenea

“In Yoruba mythology, Egungun-oya is a Goddess of divination. ‘Egungun‘ refers to the collective spirits of the ancestral dead; the Orisha ‘Oya‘ is seen as the mother of the Egun.

In Egba and Egbado area, as well as many parts of Yorubaland, Odun Egungun festivals are held in communities to commemorate the ancestors. Egungun masquerade are performed during these annual or biennial ceremonies as well as during specific funeral rites throughout the year. The masquerade is a multifaceted ceremony which includes the making of offerings as well as the honoring of ancestors for past and future aid.

Egungun performances organized for funerary purposes mark the death of important individuals. In this context, the masks reflect a creative response to death as a time of crisis involving mourning and loss. Elaborate performances serve to commemorate the dead through the remembrance of their past life while simultaneously reinforcing the relationship between the living and the recently deceased ancestor.

Among the broad range of themes incorporated in the Egungun masks are representations of numerous societal and cultural stereotypes as well as acrobatic images in which dancers turn their clothing inside out, in part to suggest the power and distance of the ancestral world. Entertaining satirical masks depicting animals and humans are performed during the masquerade and often serve as a social commentary on the life of the community.” [1]

Here is a video highlighting some scenes from a Egungun festival held in the Oyortunji African Village (near Sheldon, South Carolina) from 2010.  This sacred festival is a type of Memorial Day in which the ancestors and deceased are collectively remembered…

 

 

 

 

 

Sources:

Wikipedia, “Egungun-oya“.

 

 

Suggested Links:

Covenofthegoddess.com, “Goddess Oya“.

French, Selina. Order of the White Moon, “Oya“.

Hargrow, Tirra. Goddess-Body-Mind-Spirit.com, “The Goddess of Transformation“.

Heathwitch. Order of the White Moon, “Oya: Lady of Storms“.

O., Bommie. MotherlandNigeria.com, “Festivals“.

Revel, Anita.  Reconnect with Your Inner Goddess, “Oya“.

Strong, Laura. Mythic Arts, “Egungun: The Masked Ancestors of Yoruba“.

Took, Thalia. A-Muse-ing Grace Gallery, “Oya“.

Wikipedia, “Egungun“.

Wikipedia, “Oya“.

Goddess Gefn

“Freyja” by paintedflowers

“Gefn’s themes are sun, winter, spring, protection, health, love, divination, magic, fertility, foresight, and growth.  Her symbols are all green or growing things.  A Goddess whose name means simply ‘giver’, Gefn was regarded by the Norse-Germanic people as a frolicsome, fertile figure and seeress who embodied the earth’s greenery. Gefn brings this abundance to us today: abundant well-being, abundant companionship, and abundant Goddess-centered magic!

Walpurgisnacht with a German saint (Saint Walburga), who had curative powers and taught people how to banish curses. For our purpose, Gefn stands in, offering to heal the curse of a broken heart by filling our lives with love and hope-filled foresight. If someone has completely overlooked or trashed your feelings recently, ask Gefn for help in words that you find comfortable. She’s waiting and willing to apply a spiritual salve to that wound.

Also try the German custom of ringing bells and banging pots to frighten away any malicious or prankish magic (or people who make it) before your spring activities really start to rock ‘n’ roll. Make this as playful as possible to encourage Gefn’s participation. Burning rosemary and juniper likewise cleanses the area, and if you can get either of these fresh, Gefn’s presence lies within. The burning releases Her energy.”

(Patricia Telesco, “365 Goddess: a daily guide to the magic and inspiration of the goddess”.)

“In Norse mythology, Gefjon (pronounced GEF-yon) or Gefjun (with the alternate spelling Gefion) is a Goddess associated with ploughing, the Danish island of Zealand, the legendary Swedish king Gylfi, the legendary Danish king Skjöldr, foreknowledge, and virginity. Gefjon is attested in the Poetic Edda, compiled in the 13th century from earlier traditional sources; the Prose Edda and Heimskringla, written in the 13th century by Snorri Sturluson; in the works of skalds; and appears as a gloss for various Greco-Roman Goddesses in some Old Norse translations of Latin works.

Gefjon ploughs the earth in Sweden by Lorenz Frølich

The Prose Edda and Heimskringla both report that Gefjon plowed away what is now lake Mälaren, Sweden, and with this land formed the island of Zealand, Denmark. In addition, the Prose Edda describes that not only is Gefjon a virgin Herself, but that all who die a virgin become Her attendants. Heimskringla records that Gefjon married the legendary Danish king Skjöldr and that the two dwelled in Lejre, Denmark.

Scholars have proposed theories about the etymology the name of the Goddess, connections to fertility and ploughing practices, the implications of the references made to Her as a virgin, five potential mentions of the Goddess in the Old English poem Beowulf, and potential connections between Gefjon and Grendel’s Mother and/or the Goddesses Freyja and Frigg.” [1]

The Gefion Fountain, located on the harbour front in Copenhagen, Denmark. Photo by Oliver J. Schirmer

“The predominant myth about Gefjon is from a ninth century poem by Bragi the Old and was retold by Snorri Sturluson in the thirteenth century. He relates how Odin had sent Gefjon out to look for more land, and She came to the court of King Gylfi of Sweden. She entertained the king, and in return he gave Her a grant of as much land as four oxen could plough in one day and one night. Gefjon went to the land of the giants where She had four sons with a giant. She turned the four sons into oxen and brought them back to King Gylfi. They dug up so much earth that they created a lake, Lake Mälaren, and the earth that they had dug they dumped into the sea where it formed an island, Zealand, which is now part of Denmark. Gefjon then moved to the island and married Odin’s son Skjöld, and their children became the royal family of Denmark.

Elsewhere in his works, Snorri Sturluson refers to Gefjon as a virgin Goddess, although the trickster God Loki claims that this is not true. Gefjon is one of Frigg’s handmaidens, and She in turn is served by women who died as virgins.” [2]

 

ASSOCIATIONS:

Also Called: The Giver; Mistress of Magick

Colors: Green, gold

Symbols: Plow, wheat, corn

Stones/Metals: Amber, malachite, copper

Plants: Hawthorn, alder, wheat, corn, elder, thyme, yarrow

Day: Friday

Runes: Gebo, Fehu, Jera       [3]

 

 

 

 

Sources:

Pagan Rights Coalition, “Gefjon“.

Sabrina. Goddess A Day, “Gefjon“.

Wikipedia, “Gefjon“.

 

Suggested Links:

Odin’s Volk, “Gefjon“.

Paxson, Diana L. Hrafnar.org, “Beloved“.

Quarrie, Deanne. Global Goddess, “Gefjon the Giver“.

Thomas, Dawn “Belladonna”. Global Goddess, “Goddess Gefjon and a Sample Ritual“.

VAIDILUTE, “Asgard and the Gods – Part 4

Wikipedia, “List of names of Freyja“.


Goddess Asherah

(This is one of the several Goddesses that Patricia Telesco makes a second entry on in her book.  She spells Asherah’s name as “Aherah” for today’s entry, but I could find no reference to “Aherah”.  You can view my previous entry on Asherah here.)

 

"Goddess of the Tides" by Jonathon Earl Bowser

“Asherah’s themes are luck, health, blessings, wisdom and divination.  Her symbols are a wooden pole and bricks.  Asherah is the Phoenician/Mesopotamian Mother of all Wisdom and Propriestress of Universal Law. On this day She offers Her perspective on the present and the future to begin settling the first quarter of the year sagaciously.

In Iranian stories, Asherah could walk on water, gave birth to over seventy deities, and taught people the arts of carpentry and brick building.

Sizdah Be-dar is part of the new year festivities in Iran. Follow Iranian tradition and generate Asherah’s fortuitous, healthy energy in your life by going on a picnic (or have one in the living room if the weather doesn’t cooperate, but leave the windows open).  It’s bad luck to stay inside today! Or, to make a spring wish, toss any type of spring water sprouts in water while focusing on your goal. If it is meant to be, the wish will manifest before the next Sizdah Be-dar. The alternative to sprouts is any newly sprouting seed, which should be planted afterwards to encourage the magic to grow.

For wisdom, find a small piece of wood or brick to represent Asherah. Lie down and meditate with the token over your third eye (located in the middle of the forehead and reputed to be a psychic center), visualizing purple light pouring through it. Chant:

‘Asherah abide in me
with your wisdom
let me see!’

Carry the token when you need to act judiciously.”

(Patricia Telesco, “365 Goddess: a daily guide to the magic and inspiration of the goddess”.)

Asherah is the wise, loving, giving, Grandmother of Muslims, Jews and Christians.  Over 4,000 years ago, most Canaanites and Hebrew households had altars dedicated to their beloved household Goddess Asherah; She inspired great devotion.  Many Asherah figures have been found, and many of Her altars have been found in the ruins of ancient kitchens. [1]

Asherah Figurines (9th-7th Centuries BCE)

“Archaeologists have found many statues of Goddess Asherah without finding a matching number of male figurines. By the early 1940s, over 300 terracotta figurines of nude goddesses had been unearthed in digs around Jerusalem supporting Her worship was an integral part of their religion.

As with all Goddess based religions it took a great deal of effort by the male-dominated priesthoods to erase Goddess worship among the common people. As the history of Canaan would change and the Hebrew bible expanded, Goddess Asherah would be mentioned several times as a companion God. Many scholars now weigh the idea of Yehweh actually having a wife? Eventually any mention of Goddess Asherah would be totally discredited from the transcriptions of the ancient writings.

"Morning Star" by Mahmoud Farshchian

As more and more information of Goddess Asherah becomes known, we know Her to be a Goddess of fertility, bringing special blessings to the family, and helping people achieve their goals and dreams. She was the Goddess worshipped by King Solomon, a King that dare worship his choosing rather than bending to the invasion of a War of men in the name of control through God. The many aspects of Goddess Asherah included Ashratum, Atharath, Astoreth, Elath, Eliat, Queen of Heaven, Lady of the Sea and She Who Gives Birth to the Gods. She has been called the mother of the Goddess Anath and Mother of Baʿal. It is well accepted in a time of God dominated worship it was as always the women who kept the Goddess alive.” [2]

“Even though Her name changes, Asherah remains the feminine face of God down through the present day. Her themes are kindness, love, divination and foresight. Her symbols are lions, lilies, a tree or a pole and a triangle on a pole or a cross.” [3]

 

 

“As women and daughters of the Goddess we remember this lost Goddess. Though Her myths are scarce, we know Her well. She is the Maiden, Mother and Crone that has existed since the beginning. She is beautiful, taking on the face of Her people and She is the strength of Her people. She is promise of the future and She is the wisdom of the ancestors. She is the prosperity and peace they know form living tribal in harmony and respect for each other. She is the treasured Mother Earth that sustains them and She is the blood of their life. We only need to turn within to know this Goddess man would try to erase.

"Tree Goddess" by Octavia Cheetham

As women it is through us She lives. In remembering Goddess Asherah we acknowledge our voice of self and the gift we have today to be authentic.  In remembering Goddess Asherah we also acknowledge how easily this can be striped from us by all who would think to program us with their thinking. As in the day of old we must recognize those who would know best for us without giving thought to who we would choose to be and we must not give that of ourselves. It is with open eyes we must take responsibility for ourselves and the magick or chaos we call forth in our life. We must know Goddess to know this truth least we surrender and forget.

As women we must remember or origins back to our primal Goddess of beginnings. In Her there is sanctuary and abundance of self. There is no true sanctuary without Her; there are only repeated patterns of disappointments. As women we gather and celebrate the lost Goddess Asherah that we might be lost as well. Blessed Be to Goddess Asherah and blessed be to the Goddess within.” [4]

 

 

Sources:

Coven of the Goddess, “Goddess Asherah, the Forgotten Goddess“.

Medusa. Order of the White Moon, “Asherah“.

Spiral Goddess Grove, “Asherah Altar“.

Suggested Links:

Carisa. Queen of Heaven, “Asherah, Part I: The Lost Bride of Yahweh” ; “Asherah: Part II: The Serpent’s Bride“; “Asherah” Part III: The Lion Lady“.

Binger, Tilde.  Asherah: Goddesses in Ugarit, Israel and the Old Testament.

Monaghan, Patricia. Goddesses in World Culture, “Asherah: Hidden Goddess of the Bible“. (p. 39 – 54).

PaganNews.com, “Asherah“.

Rankine, David. The Cosmic Shekinah, “The Goddess Asherah“.

Stuckey, Johanna H. MatriFocus Web Magazine for Goddess Women,  “Asherah and the God of the Early Israelites“.

Goddess Sága

“Sága’s themes are foresight, divination, inspiration, femininity, psychic abilities, kindness and tradition.  Her symbols are cups, water and fish.  Sága is an attendant of Frigg, is a Scandinavian Goddess whose name means ‘seeress’. Saga is a student of the Universe, ever watchful and ever instructing us about the value of keen observation. She is directly connected with the sign of Pisces, which governs artistic expression, psychic abilities and sensitivity toward others’ needs.

In artistic representations, Sage bears a long Viking braid, an emblem of womanhood and honor. According to the Eddas, Sága lives at Sinking Beach, a waterfall, where she offers Her guests a refreshing drink of inspiration from a golden cup. Later, Her name got applied to the sacred heroic texts of the Scandinavian people.

Tend your sacred journals today. Write about your path, your feelings, where you see yourself going, and where you’ve been. Saga lives in those words – in your musing, memories and thoughts – guiding them to the paper to inspire you now and in the future.

Invoke any of Sága’s attributes in your life today simply by practicing the art of observation. Really look at the world, your home, and the people around you. As you do, remember that little things count. Saga’s insight lies in the grain of sand and the wildflower as well as the stars.”

(Patricia Telesco, “365 Goddess: a daily guide to the magic and inspiration of the goddess”.)

“Sága is one of the twelve major Goddesses, second only to Frigg according to Snorri in Prose Edda. She sits by the stream of memory and drinks from golden chalices at Her grand estate called Sökkvabekkr. Sökkvabekkr means ‘Sinking Beach’ and was a landscape of flowing waterfalls. There She and Oðin drink every day from golden chalices.  The liquid is either the waters of memory, or pehaps from the Well of Urðr.

Sága pours Odin a drink in an illustration (1893) by Jenny Nyström.

Her name means ‘seeress’ or ‘ominiscience’ and is connected with the Norse word for history – thus, some call Her the Goddess of history.  She is often assumed to be the sibyl or seeress who prophesizes Ragnarök.  Sága’s name is most likely directly related to the word saga (epic story) which in turn comes from the Old Norse verb segja ‘to say, tell’.

It has also been postulated that since Frigg knows everything about the present, and Sága knows all about the past, that Sága is an aspect of Frigg as Memory.

Sága’s genealogy is lost in the mists of time, and seems to belong to an older generation than that of the Vanir or Æsir, like Týr.  It is thought that She may have been an ancient sea deity akin to a Nerthus/Njörðr or Ægir/Rán combination, which is why sometimes She has been described as the Grandmother of Heimdall (who had nine mothers, the waves).

From Grímnismál
Oðin is describing the halls of the gods:

‘Sökkvabekkr, a fourth is called, and cool waves resound over it; there Oðin and Sága drink everyday, joyful, from golden cups.’ From the Poetic Edda, translated by Carolyne Larrington

From Gylfaginning
In answer to ‘Who are the  Asyniur?’

‘The highest if Frigg.  She has a dwelling called Fensalir and it is very splendid.  Second is Sága.  She dwells atSökkvabekkr, and that is a big place.’ From Snorri Sturluson’s Edda, translated by Anthony Faulkes

There is also some speculation that Iðunn and Sága might be one in the same.” [1]

 

 

Sources:

Ladysaga.tripod.com, “Saga“.

 

Suggested Links:

Krasskova, Galina. Exploring the Northern Tradition, “Saga“.

Paxson, Diana L. Hrafnar.org,Beloved“.

Wikipedia, “Sága and Sökkvabekkr“.


Goddess Iemanja

“Iemanja’s themes are foresight, divination and psychic abilities.  Her symbol is water.  In Brazil, Iemanja is considered the ocean’s spirit. Every drop of saltwater bears Her imprint and calls us back to Iemanja, our ancient mother and home. As a water elemental, Iemanja gives Her followers vision, inspiration and the ability to flow smoothly through life’s torrential times.

At daybreak on this day, mediums in Brazil begin singing and dancing to summon the spirit of Iemanja, who provides glimpses of the year ahead. Worshipers take offerings carved with wishes to rivers or to the ocean. Here, Iemanja’s spirit accepts the gifts and the magic of the wish begins. To follow this custom, take any small natural token and toss it in moving water with your wish; the water should be flowing toward you if you wish to bring energy and flowing away from you if you want to carry away problems.

In keeping with today’s theme, soak in a mild saltwater bath to cleanse away any unwanted energy and heighten your senses. Then try your favorite divination tool. Pray to Iemanja beforehand to bless your efforts. See what messages she has for you, especially on emotionally charged matters (water equates with emotions in metaphysical traditions).

Finally, to honor Iemanja, wear ocean-blue clothing today, carry a blue-toned stone (like lace agate of lapis), put a seashell or coral in your pocket, dance in the rain (if the weather cooperates), or play in your sprinkler. Rediscover the element of water.”

(Patricia Telesco, “365 Goddess: a daily guide to the magic and inspiration of the goddess”.)

Iemanjá is also known as Yemanjá or Janaína in Brazilian Candomblé and Umbanda religions.

The Umbanda religion worships Iemanjá as one of the seven orixás of the African Pantheon. She is the Queen of the Ocean, the patron deity of the fishermen and the survivors of shipwrecks, the feminine principle of creation and the spirit of moonlight. A syncretism happens between the Catholic Nossa Senhora dos Navegantes (Our Lady of the Seafaring) and the orixá Iemanjá of the African Mythology. Sometimes, a feast can honor both.

In Salvador, Bahia, Iemanjá is celebrated by Candomblé on the very same day consecrated by the Catholic Church to Our Lady of Seafaring (Nossa Senhora dos Navegantes). Every February 2, thousands of people line up at dawn to leave their offerings at her shrine in Rio Vermelho.

 

Gifts for Iemanjá usually include flowers and objects of female vanity (perfume, jewelry, combs, lipsticks, mirrors). These are gathered in large baskets and taken out to the sea by local fishermen. Afterwards a massive street party ensues.

Iemanjá is also celebrated every December 8 in Salvador, Bahia. The Festa da Conceição da Praia (Feast to Our Lady of Conception of the church at the beach) is a city holiday dedicated to the Catholic saint and also to Iemanjá. Another feast occurs on this day in the Pedra Furada, Monte Serrat in Salvador, Bahia, called the Gift to Iemanjá, when fishermen celebrate their devotion to the Queen of the Ocean.

Outside Bahia State, Iemanjá is celebrated mainly by followers of the Umbanda religion.

 

On New Year’s Eve in Rio de Janeiro, millions of cariocas, of all religions, dressed in white gather on Copacabana beach to greet the New Year, watch fireworks, and throw (white) flowers and other offerings into the sea for the Goddess in the hopes that she will grant them their requests for the coming year. Some send their gifts to Iemanjá in wooden toy boats. Paintings of Iemanjá are sold in Rio shops, next to paintings of Jesus and other Catholic saints. They portray Her as a woman rising out of the sea. Small offerings of flowers and floating candles are left in the sea on many nights at Copacabana.

In São Paulo State, Iemanjá is celebrated in the two first weekends of December on the shores of Praia Grande city. During these days many vehicles garnished with Iemanjá icons and colors (white and blue) roam from the São Paulo mountains to the sea littoral, some of them traveling hundreds of miles. Thousands of people rally near Iemanjá’s statue in Praia Grande beach.

 

In Pelotas, Rio Grande do Sul State, on February 2, the image of Nossa Senhora dos Navegantes is carried to the port of Pelotas. Before the closing of the Catholic feast, the boats stop and host the Umbanda followers that carry the image of Iemanjá, in a syncretic meeting that is watched by thousand of people on the shore.

 

 

 

Goddess Carmenta

"Premières Caresses" by William-Adolphe Bouguereau

In ancient roman religion and myth, Carmenta was a goddess of childbirth and prophecy, associated with technological innovation as well as the protection of mothers and children, and a patron of midwives. She was also said to have invented the Latin alphabet.

“Carmenta’s themes are children, fertility, foresight and birth. Her symbols are music and babies.
Carmenta, the Roman Goddess of prophecy and birth, joins in our new year festivities by teaching us the value of preparedness and productivity. The only offerings acceptable to Carmenta are vegetable matter – as a birth Goddess, taking life is abhorrent to her. Her magical, prophetic nature can be seen in Carmenta’s name, specifically the root word carmen, meaning a spell or charm in the form of a song.
Put on some uplifting music while you get dressed this morning. Let it motivate the resourceful aspect of Carmenta within you for the entire day.

In ancient Rome, today was the second to last day of a five-day-long festival honoring Carmenta. Pregnant women offered her rice for a safe delivery, while those wishing to have children ate raspberries to internalize her fertility. Try either of these to prompt the successful completion of a project or to improve your physical, emotional or spiritual fertility.

Romans considered this an excellent day to make predictions for a child. If you know someone who’s expecting, take a ring on a long string and hold it still over the mother’s belly. If the ring swings back and forth it indicates a boy; circular movements indicate a girl.”

(Patricia Telesco, “365 Goddess: a daily guide to the magic and inspiration of the goddess”.)

Carmenta was the leader of the Camenae, a group of prophetic water goddesses or nymphs of ancient Rome, considered goddesses of Poetry as well as Birth-Goddesses who presided over springs, wells and fountains and who were invoked for healing.  The other three Camenae were Egeria (who was a divine consort and counselor of the Sabine second king of Rome, Numa Pompilius), Porrima (a baby is born head first when she is present), and Postverta (present at feet first births).

There is a grove outside the Porta Capena that is sacred to Carmenta.  Romans celebrated Carmenta’s festival January 11 and 15, during the first month of the  year, a symbol, perhaps of the beginning of life. The focus of this primarily female festival was on divination and reflection on the past.  Pregnant women made offerings to Her of prayers and rice in the hopes of an easy delivery.  The festivities began by making cream-filled pastries which were shaped as male and female genitalia which were eaten in honor of this Goddess of birth.  The wearing of leather or other dead animal skins were forbidden in their sacred places.

Alternate names for Carmenta: Carmentis, Themis, Timandra (Greek, “She who honors the male”?), Tiburtis (linking Her with the town of Tibur/Tivoli and Albunea, the White Sybil?)

For more information on the Camenae, click here.

 

 

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