Deity of the Day
Goddess of Agriculture
Areas of Influence: Ceres was the Roman Goddess of agriculture and grain. The word cereal is derived from her name.
After a terrible famine in 496 B.C. the Sibylline books recommended the adoption of the Greek Deities Demeter, Dionyisus and Persephone. Their identities were changed to Ceres, Liber and Libera. Together they formed the Avertine triad.
This Goddess also adopted Demeter’s mythology as she also lost her daughter to the God of the underworld.
Her early Italian cult was similar to that of Tellus the Earth Goddess. She was aided in her agricultural duties by twelve minor Gods and Goddesses.
Her main temple is situated on Aventine Hill.
Her other claim to fame is that she is the Patron Goddess of Enna, Sicily.
Origins and Genealogy: In Roman mythology she was the daughter of Saturn and Ops. She had several brothers and sisters: Juno, Jupiter, Neptune, Pluto and Vesta. She married her brother Jupiter and together they had a daughter named Proserpina.
Strengths: Fertility, abundance and endurance.
Weaknesses: Lived her life through her daughter.
Greek Equivalent: Demeter
Pictured carrying a scepter or a farming tool in one hand and a basket of fruit or grain in the other.
Sacred Animal: Pigs. Ants were used in her temples to predict the weather and the future.
Sacred Plants: The chaste trees corn and pumpkins. She was also offered the first fruits of the harvest.
Festivals: Her main festival, the Cerealia was celebrated on 19th April. This Goddess was also celebrated annually by woman in the Ambarvalia which was held in May.
The Mother Archetype is a life-giver and the source of nurturing, devotion, patience and unconditional love. The ability to forgive and provide for her children and put them before herself is the essence of a good mother.
In its shadow aspect the Mother can be devouring, abusive and abandoning. The shadow Mother can also make her children feel guilty about becoming independent and leaving her.
Ceres is a grain Goddess who teaches people how to nurture and harvest her crops. Later she also takes on the Mother role of her Greek counterpart Demeter.
The Rescuer provides strength and support to others in crisis. They act out of love with no expectation of a reward.
The shadow Rescuer expects the rescued party to be grateful and will often try to keep that person needy.
Ceres is distraught when her daughter goes missing and does not rest until she has found her. She is frustrated as she is unable to save her daughter and is forced to compromise.
How To Work With These Archetypes
It is not necessary to be a biological mother to have this Archetype. It can refer to anyone who has a lifelong pattern of nurturing and devotion to living things.
You are exhibiting the features of the shadow Mother if you smother your children and are over protective. Encourage independence and allow children to make mistakes but be available to give care and advice when it’s needed.
The other shadow Mother is the one that abandons her children, or is so busy that she has no time for nurturing her young.
The Rescuer is one of your Archetypes if you are always trying to save and help people.
What you need to ask yourself is what motivates you to act this way? Are you expecting a reward for your trouble or do you love helping others?