Sunday, February 5, 2017

Weekly Wicca 5: Gods & Goddesses


Hope you had a nice Imbolc, everyone! Now, like I talked about in my last post, one of the things I love about Wicca is that it's so all-inclusive - and this also applies to the deities we worship. When I was younger I wanted to be an archaeologist cause I loved reading about different mythologies.
Now the main thing most of us agree on, is that we believe in the God and the Goddess (some combine the two). They are a part of nature, and we don't see them as sort of an ''authority figure'' like other religions do - we consider them a friend, a parent or someone who gives us advice and guides us. We don't ask them to intervene and ''fix'' all of our and the world's problems, but we ask them for the energy and courage to do so.
We witches often do spells and rituals, and that is where the other deities come in. We call upon different gods and goddesses that represent the certain thing we're looking for - like courage or love. Different deities from different mythologies are usually the god ''of something''. That's why we choose to ask them for help in certain life situations. The gods are there to give us guidance.


GREEK / ROMAN

Apollo - Greek god, son of Zeus, god of the Sun, poetry, music and art. He brings light, clarity, rational thought, truth and healing. Symbolized by sunburst, laurel leaves and arrows.

Artemis / Diana - Maiden goddess of the forest and night sky, symbolized by the waxing crescent moon, the bow and female bears. She used to be the goddess of childbirth, but now she is considered the goddess of independence, integrity and action, as well as being against patriarchy. The Dianic (female only) covens worship her.


Athena / Minerva - Goddess of wisdom, communication, science, mathematics, art and intellect. She is thought to give the gift of writing and communication for those who honor her. She is similar to Apollo, but she is also a goddess of crafts. Symbolized by the triangle, snakes, spirals, owls and weaving.

Aphrodite / Venus - Goddess of love, beauty, sexuality and sensuality. Witches usually call upon her for love spells. Symbolized by roses, myrtle, scallop shells, water, the planet Venus and morning dew.

Aries / Mars - God of action, defense and protection. People used to think of him as a bringer of war, but now witches consider him as a bringer of change. There are some differences between the Greek and Roman god, but now they're usually considered the same. Symbolized by the planet Mars and the color red.

Demeter / Ceres - Goddess of corn and seasonal growth. She's the mother of Persephone, and during the wintertime the crops die because she's mourning that her daughter is in the world of the dead with Hades. She encourages women to have good relationships with each other, and inspired environmentalism. Symbolized by the cornucopia.

Dionysus - God of wine and ecstasy. Symbolized by grapes, vine-leaves, masks and dance.

Flora - Goddess of spring, flowers and plants. Symbolized by flower wreaths.

Gaia - She is the mother goddess who gave birth to all existence. That's why the Earth is called Gaia. She is generous, but she needs us to help her in her fragile state. Symbolized by stones, crystals, soil, greenery and trees.


Hecate - Crone goddess of witches, magic, the night, crossroads, borders and thresholds. Like Frøya her chariot is pulled by cats, and she is often represented by nocturnal creatures. She watches over travelers and people making big life-decisions. She guides us into life, through life and to death. She has arcane knowledge, and that's why she's very popular with witches. Symbolized by cats, crossroads, cauldrons, broomsticks, bats, moths, ravens, crows, owls, bones, herbal knowledge, spiders and webs. Very gothy, I have to add!

Hephaestus / Vulcan / Wayland / Govennon - Blacksmith / metal-working god. People used to consider those who could work in such a way with the elements to be sacred. Symbolized by anvils, hammers, horseshoes, iron, metalwork and alchemy.

Hera / Juno - Goddess of marriage, partnerships and the home. She is a family goddess and protects everyone in the family, especially the young, and gives advice to parents. Symbolized by peacock feathers, turquoise stones and loving cups.

Hermes / Mercury - Messenger god of speed and communication. Symbolized by caduceus, winged sandals / helmet, the planet Mercury, the color yellow and feathers.

Hesta / Hestia / Vesta - Goddess of hearth-fire. She protects it and oversees the household tasks. She is associated with cooking and pottery. Symbolized by hearth-fire and flames.

Pan - God of herds, fertility and male sexuality. He is half-man and half-goat, and represents our primal instincts. He's very popular in gay men's groups. Symbolized by goatskins and horns.



Persephone / Kore - Maiden goddess of spring and the Underworld. Symbolized by pomegranate and spring flowers.

Pluto / Hades - God of the Underworld, the king of the dead. Symbolized by the number eight and wand.

Selene - Goddess of the Full Moon. She rules the tides, oversees women's cycles, reproduction, pregnancy and birth. Symbolized by the Full Moon.

Uranus - God of the heavens. He is the god of rain and male fertility. Symbolized by a sickle and raindrops.

Zeus / Jupiter / Jove - Father and thunder god. He is seen as a very kind god in many ways. Symbolized by the planet Jupiter, the color purple, lightning fork and eagles.


EGYPTIAN

Anubis - Jackal-headed god of the Underworld. He guides the newly dead and knows the destiny of all mortals. He is very much loved by Wiccans! Symbolized by scales, jackals, divination and magic.

Bast / Bastet - Cat-headed goddess of music and dancing. All cats are sacred to her, so she is much loved by cat-loving witches. Symbolized by cats.



Hathor - Goddess of Sun and rain. She is thought to be the one who flooded the Nile, so some see her as a goddess of fertility as well, and that brings us from confusion to understanding. Symbolized by a solar disc between cow horns and turquoise.

Horus - Falcon-headed god of the sky. His eye protects against evil. The image of him and his mother Isis has been copied by many religions all over the world, most notably by Christianity. Symbolized by falcons, Eye of Horus, Sun and Moon.

Isis - The mother of all. She is the lover / sister of Osiris. She is powerful and can bring people back from the dead. She represents fertility, and some say she created the written language. She is the goddess of the Milky Way, which is said to be created by her breast milk. Symbolized by lapiz lazuli, blue agate, throne, Full Moon between crescent horns, falcon wings and stars.

Nephthys - Goddess of magic and secret knowledge. She is the sister of Isis. Symbolized by the kite bird.

Nut - Goddess of the night sky. Symbolized by astronomy, the night sky and stars.

Osiris - God of regeneration. He brought civilization to Egypt, and is the god of corn, wine, crafts and religion. He was cut to pieces by Set, but put back together by his sister Isis, who he also had a child with (Horus). Symbolized by corn and vine leaves.



Sekhmet - Lion-headed goddess. She destroys disease and other unwanted things. Symbolized by lion-heads and sun discs.

Set - God of the waning Moon, thunder and storms. He used to represent drought and destruction, but now he's considered more similar to Sekhmet. Symbolized by the waning Moon and lightning fork.

Thoth - God of magic, wisdom, medicine, astronomy, writing and music. Symbolized by the Crescent Moon and the Eye of Ra (the Sun).


CELTIC / NORTHERN EUROPEAN

Angus / Oengus - Celtic god of love and youth. Symbolized by a harp and songbirds.

Arhianrhod - Welsh goddess off the Silver Wheel, the Moon and the stars. Symbolized by a spinning wheel, webs, the Full Moon and stars.

Belenos / Bel - Celtic Sun god of light, health and healing. He is a very important god; he gives his name to the holiday Beltane and we celebrate and honor him at Litha (the summer solstice). Symbolized by the wheel, sunburst and a head with a halo.

Bel / Beli / Sol - The female aspect of Bel / Belenos. Worshipped by feminist covens. Symbolized by tidal rivers, the wheel, sunbursts, serpentine hair and May Day morning dew.

Brighid / Bridie / Brigit - Celtic fire goddess of healing, poetry and metalwork. She brings forth spring and protects, women, children and newborn animals (especially sheep and cattle). The festival Imbolc is for her. She represents independence, integrity and energy, and is often depicted with red hair. Symbolized by fire, wells, healing cauldrons, serpents, anvil and hammer, dandelions, snowdrops, amethysts and white candles.

Bloddueuth - Welsh maiden goddess of springtime and flowers. Symbolized by flowers and owls.



Ceridwen - Welsh goddess of Earth wisdom and regeneration. She is a shape-shifter, life-giver and magician, so she is a favorite of many Wiccans. Symbolized by cauldrons, sows, hens, magic and shape-shifting.

Cerne / Cernunnos / Herne - Celtic antlered god and spirit of the Greenwood. Consort to the Mother Goddess and symbol of fertility and regeneration. He is known by many names, like Green Man, Jack-in-the-Green, Robin Hood or Herne the Hunter. He is a positive male role model that cares for the environment, is capable of change, a protector and is in touch with his emotions. He is a very popular god amongst witches today. Symbolized by Green Man masks, the ram-headed serpent, antlers, the oak tree, acorns and oak leaves.

Dagda - Irish father god, associated with the Earth and its seasons, giving life and also taking it away. He has a large club he uses for killing and restoring warriors. He is said to mate with Morrigan at Samhain. Symbolized by his giant club.

Danu / Anu / Aine - Irish Mother Goddess of the land, crops and greenery who also protects against nightmares and fears. Symbolized by a flaming torch and hillsides.

Dis / Dispater - Ancient french (Gaul) father god. Originally a god of the Underworld, he was later merged with Cerne to be a fertility god as well, so now he rules both. Symbolized by a three-legged wheel or triskele.


Eostre / Ostara - Teutonic / Germanic fertility goddess associated with the spring equinox. She is linked to fertility, conception and birth of humans, animals and plants. Her totem is the hare and the egg. Her name is given to the Christian holiday Easter, as well as the pagan festival. Symbolized by hares, eggs, spring flowers and buds.

Epona / Rhiannon - Horse goddess which is often portrayed as or riding on a horse. She is a goddess of travel, movement, speed, change and our link to the animal kingdom. She was worshipped by the Gauls, but also by the Romans. She is also linked with the Welsh goddess Rhiannon, who in addition is a goddess of the sea, natural justice and retribution. Symbolized by horses, springtime, the sea and travel.

Freya / Frøya - Norse goddess of love and sexuality. She is transported by a chariot drawn by cats. Symbolized by necklaces and cats.

Lugh - Irish Sun god. He's a master of arts and crafts, and is a god of health and healing. He is much beloved, both back then and now. Symbolized by sunbursts.

Macha - Irish goddess associated with horses and speed. She brings retribution and dreams (night-mare). She is a goddess of lightning, thunder and rain. She will protect you if you have been wronged, in pregnancy and childbirth. Symbolized by a lightning fork and horses.

Maeve / Mebh - Irish goddess of female sexuality, sovereignty and self-determination. She is rumored to need 30 men a day to satisfy her. One bad-ass chick! Symbolized by the may-blossom.

Morrigan - Irish raven goddess. She is a sexualized aspect of the Dark Mother, a goddess of dark times and mates with Dagda at Samhain. She is called upon to bring wisdom out of chaos and darkness. She brings positivity and creativity. Symbolized by ravens, crows and bones.

Nuada - Irish Sun god. The legend of Nuada of the Silver Arm portrays him as a great king and hero. He is a god of protection, defense, healing, light and regeneration. Symbolized by silver sunburst.


Odin / Woden - Norse / Saxon All-Father, a god of great knowledge. He knows the secret of the runes (there's a legend where he suffers a lot by hanging upside down from a tree for nine days and nights to obtain that knowledge). He brought knowledge to the humans and gives us advice on how to life and spiritual growth. He rules over life and greets the dead. He is a god of magic and oversees the connections between Earth and sky. He has two crows called Hugin (thought) and Munin (memory). Symbolized by oak trees.

Thor / Tor - Scandinavian thunder god. He is powerful, strong, good-humored and quick-tempered when there's injustice. Symbolized by thunder and silver hammers.


ASIAN / AFRICAN / MIDDLE EASTERN

Astarte / Ishtar - Asian goddess of love, sexuality, female allurement and primal creatrix. Associated with the stars, Moon, Sun and Earth, she is the typical mother goddess who links sexuality, reproduction, sensuality and spirituality. She is a goddess of dance and beauty, and like Aphrodite / Venus associated with the planet Venus. Symbolized by serpents, stars and the Milky Way.

Innanna - Ancient Sumerian / Asian goddess of the heavens and the Underworld. She shares similar legends to Odin, Persephone, Demeter and Freya. Symbolized by seven stars in a circle and the Moon.



Kali - Indian goddess of dance and female energy, a part of the primal life-force. She dances the dance of destruction (the chaos from which life is produced) and cuts away the unnecessary. In Wicca she is seen as a necessary aspect of creation, a positive way of channeling ''righteous'' anger and putting energy to good use. She is a fierce protector and symbol of direct action in good causes. Symbolized by fire, dance, and the wheel of creation.

Lilith - North African owl-footed goddess of childbirth, integrity and resistance against tyranny. She is the dark side of the Moon and represents aspects of femaleness often outlawed within patriarchy. She is a lunar deity who oversees women's cycles, pregnancy and childbirth, and protects newborns. Symbolized by owls and discs of the half-Moon.

Mithras - God of light and resurrection. The cult of Mithras originated in Persia, but he became popular with Roman soldiers. He is celebrated at the solar festivals, especially the winter solstice, when he is reborn. Symbolized by sunbursts.

Oya - African goddess of storms, defence, positive and protective action. She is good to have on your side if you are bullied or threatened. She is fierce and represents the basic instinct of self-protection, and gives the wrongdoers what they deserve for their deeds. Symbolized by a copper shield and the color red.

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