Deity of the Day
The Greek Goddess
Areas of Influence: Athena Goddess of war and wisdom
Unlike the war God Ares, she was not known for her brutality and bullying behavior. She was more of a strategist and a diplomat and was called upon to mediate in several disputes and wars amongst the Gods.
This Greek Goddess was also associated with domestic crafts.
In Greek mythology she taught Prometheus architecture, astrology, mathematics, medicine and navigation. She is credited with the invention of spinning, weaving, the plough and rake.
She is the Patron Goddess of the city of Athens where her most famous statue is situated in the Parthenon.
Athena assisted many of the Greek heroes in their quests including Perseus, Hercules and Jason.
Goddess Athena’s Family: This Goddess had a very unusual birth as she sprung fully grown from the head of her father, Zeus. Her pregnant mother, Metis a nymph, was swallowed whole by her father. This was because like his father before him he feared that his position would be usurped by one of his children.
Athena the Greek Goddess was Zeus’s favorite child, he entrusted her with his shield the Aegis.
She had lots of half brothers and sister’s including: Aphrodite, Apollo, Ares, Artemis, Hephaaestus, Hebe, Hermes, Persephone, the Fates, the Graces, the Muses, Tityus. The number would be even greater if I included all of the children from her father’s affairs with mortals.
She herself never married. There are several myths where Athena defends her virginity when she receives unwelcome male attention. This is why the temple dedicated to her is called the Parthenon as the word means temple of the virgin in Greek.
Despite being a virgin she had a child named Erichthonius. He was born after a failed rape attempt when his father’s seed fell upon the fertile earth.
Strengths: Rational, intelligent, a powerful defender and arbitrator.
Weaknesses: Too ruled by her head and out of touch with her emotions and femine side. Unapproachable and lacking in compassion.
Roman Equivalent: Minerva
The Archetypal female Warrior, she is usually depicted wearing a helmet and a goat skin breastplate known as the aegis. On the breastplate she mounted the terrifying head of the Goddess Medusa.
This Greek Goddess was referred to as the Goddess with bright eyes. Some scholars suggest that this supports the theory that in earlier times she was also a storm and lightening Goddess. For pictures of Athena please follow this link
Sacred animals: Snakes form part of her famous statue.
Sacred birds: The owl is linked with Athena the Greek Goddess as it represents wisdom and watchfulness.
Mulberry, oak and olive trees.
Athena The Greek Goddess’s Archetypes
This Archetype represents physical strength, and the ability to protect and fight for your rights and those of of others.
The shadow side of the Warrior reflects the need to win at all costs, abandoning ethical principals to prove your supremacy.
The Greek Goddess main Archetype is that of the female Warrior. This is illustrated by her role of patron and defender of Athens. She also became involved in the war against the giants and the siege of Troy.
The Teacher/ Inventor:
The Teacher and Inventor communicates knowledge, experience and wisdom.
In it’s shadow aspect, the Teacher may manipulate and mislead their students by indoctrinating them with negative beliefs and destructive behaviours.
In Greek mythology this Goddess is the protector and advisor of the heroes Hercules, Perseus and Ulysses.
As an Inventor this Goddess teaches mankind how to spin and weave, however it is in this role that we see her need to control her “students” and she will not allow anyone to surpass her accomplishments.
How to Work With These Archetypes.
If you are drawn to work with this Goddess you may require her Warrior spirit to help you to stand up for your rights and set firm personnal boundaries. This Goddess can be a great stereotype to work with if you want to take control in your life, and wish to no longer play the role of the victim.
You may also wish to call upon this Goddess to champion the cause of others.
Conversely this Goddess may appeal to you if you have a very strong sense of self and are proud of the victories you have achieved. The shadow side of this Goddess may be asking you to reflect honestly on the cost of these victories. Have they been at the expense of others or your principles?
The Teacher/ Inventor:
This Archetype may suggest a love of passing on wisdom and learning to others.
This Goddess wise counsel can also be called upon to help you see a way through any present difficulties or to help you to master a new skill.
The shadow aspect of this stereotype is also a reminder that whenever we find ourselves in a teaching or mentoring role we must aim to be a positive role model, encouraging others to reach their full potential.