Deities Associated with Thursday – Zeus, Ruler of Olympus

Stormy Night
Deities Associated with Thursday – Zeus, Ruler of Olympus

Zeus was the youngest son of Cronos and Rhea, and became the supreme ruler of all the gods of the ancient Greeks. Citizens from all of the Greek city-states honored him, particularly at the Temple of Olympus, which became the site of a major festival every four years – that religious festival eventually became known as the Olympic Games. A colossal golden statue of Zeus was the site of many rites and rituals involving the athletes of the Olympics.

Early History and Worship
Although Zeus was venerated in many areas of Greece, there doesn’t seem to be much consistency about the methodology of this worship, and his temples (and titles) took a variety of forms. A number of different “cults of Zeus” popped up throughout history. One common form of honoring him appears to be the sacrificing of a white animal — sheep, bull, pig, etc. — over an elevated altar.

In addition to being the head honcho of Olympus, Zeus is the god of thunder and lightning. He is often represented by a lightning bolt, and is sometimes depicted with an eagle, bull, or oak tree.

Because Zeus was also considered a weather god – after all, he was the one who threw thunderbolts down from the sky – he was often worshiped on high mountaintops, including but not limited to Mount Olympus.

Eventually, the cult of Zeus expanded beyond the borders of Greece, and into nearby empires, including Persia. Herodotus wrote a lengthy description of a temple to Zeus Belus in Babylon. He described “a square of four hundred and forty yards each way, with gates of bronze.

In the center of this enclosure a solid tower has been built, two hundred and twenty yards long and broad; a second tower rises from this and from it yet another, until at last there are eight. The way up them mounts spirally outside the height of the towers; about halfway up is a resting place, with seats for repose, where those who ascend sit down and rest. In the last tower there is a great shrine; and in it stands a great and well-covered couch, and a golden table nearby.”

Zeus Gets Around
Zeus was known as quite the philanderer. Although he was married to his sister Hera, goddess of marriage, he strayed from her bed fairly regularly.

Zeus hooked up with numerous other goddesses, mortal humans, the occasional nymph, and even a few animals. Hera jealously put up with his wandering ways, and often took revenge upon Zeus’ women by going after their children. Zeus sired many of the Greek heroes and demi-gods during his amorous adventures. His extramarital activities weren’t limited to women, either. Zeus’ cup-bearer, the handsome Ganymede, earned Hera’s wrath when she discovered that the young man was also her husband’s lover.

Modern Worship of Zeus
As the supreme ruler of Mt. Olympus, Zeus was in charge of justice, morals and law. His word was to be obeyed by both men and gods alike. Today, many Hellenic Pagans continue to honor Zeus and the other gods of the ancient Greeks. Some are members of a group called the Return of the Hellenes, and consider today’s Greece to be under Christian occupation. A 2013 BBC article quotes Exsekias Trivoulides, who says, “People want to identify with something in the past – where they came from – so as to know where they are going… If you don’t know your past, you don’t have a future.”

 

Author

Patti Wigington, Paganism/Wicca Expert
Article published on & owned by About.com

The Daily OM for Feb. 21 – Sound Healing

Sound Healing
Good Vibrations

by Madisyn Taylor

When the vibrations of our physical and spiritual bodies are out of harmony it can cause disease.

Everything in the universe is in a constant state of vibration, including our bodies. Sound is vibration that can be translated by the delicate structures of our inner ear, but it moves more than just those tiny receptors. It is part of the spectrum of energy vibrations that affect us on the menta

l, physical, and spiritual levels. Long ago shamans recognized the power of sound when they first used chants and drumming to heal people. In ancient Egypt, Greece, and India, the use of sound and music for healing was a highly developed sacred science. Sonic vibration has been one way of experiencing the energy of the universe for much of humanity’s history.

When the vibrations of our physical and spiritual bodies are out of harmony it can cause disease. Sound healing gently massages the molecules back into the right places, clearing blockages and restoring harmony. Ancient healing systems such as Chinese medicine and Indian Ayurveda associate specific musical notes with subtle-energy systems of the body, such as in yoga where particular notes of music correspond to each of the seven chakras. In Tibet, priests have long used bells and bowls over and around the body to tune and clear the energy centers. Chimes and tuning forks are other tools that have been used to heal not only the body but the energy in a room as well.

Knowing that sound has the power to heal, we should also try to remember that sounds from modern life can have a negative affect. Choosing silence over discord may help us maintain a state of equilibrium. As we seek soothing and harmonizing sounds to surround us, we may be doing more than creating a balm for the noise of the world. We may actually be performing an act of self-healing that connects us with one of the most basic vibrations of the universe.

The Daily OM

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Celebrating Spirituality 365 Days A Year – St. Vincent’s Day/Festival of Apollo

Witchy Comments & Graphics

Celebrating Spirituality 365 Days A Year

St. Vincent’s Day/Festival of Apollo

St. Vincent, deacon and first Spanish martyr, was widely venerated during the Middle Ages. This day has long served to watch the weather and the legs, which are ruled by Aquarius.

Remember on St. Vincent’s day,

If that the Sun his beams display.

For ‘tis a token, bright and clear,

Of prosperous weather all the year.

In ancient Greece this day was dedicated to Apollo, the Sun God of light, poetry, and oracles. It was believed that if one carried his emblem good luck, light and truth would follow. Hesperides wrote “To Apollo: A Short Hymne” (1648) to honor Apollo on this day:

Thou mighty Lord, and master of the lyre,

Unshorn Apollo, come and re-inspire,

My fingers so, the Lyrick-strings to move

That I may play, and sing a Hymne of Love.

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A Call from the Ancestors

A Call from the Ancestors

Author:   Rev.Roman Delgado   

As I sit before my altar, I’ve had a memory, a vague knowing of something past calling me to return to myself. As if the echoes of those gone before call me into a path walked by many in Aeons past. A feeling as if what I have lost to the sands of time and waves of progress and technology as only been forgotten and craves to return.

So many have felt this call before me. I have seen it on the news, then Internet, books. Everywhere people today seem to want to return to the ways that have been lost to time. Revival and reconstructionist religious movements are being seen from the black fertile lands of Egyptian religion and the fields of Greece to the Ancient Aztec world.

The path of the ancient ones calls, yet so much of it is forgotten. Through the Aeons past in which change and progress have changed the landscape of Gaia, those gone before us seem to have been swallowed by sands of time. No longer do we seem to want to cross the river Styx; few are those that delve into the path of transformation and cross the bridge to the land of the dead and return like the true initiates of the mysteries of the ancients transformed and renewed.

Today’s society has rejected death. On a pragmatic level it makes sense. Life is meant to be lived not mourned. Life is lived for its own merit not for the sake of its end. However, in the process of forgetting the importance of death, we have forgotten the reality of transformation. Death and life is not only a never-ending spiral in the great wheel of rebirth.

Death is all around in times when only life can be seen. Death is the forbearer of rebirth and, as each thing grows anew, it is a sign of transformation. It is a sign that something else has come to an end in order to bring forth the light of a new era. In paganism this becomes obvious through myth and celebration of the changes in the cycles of life and nature. We celebrate change, yet only delve into what brings change when we actually face it.

As I sit before my altar every day, I hear a call so many ignore unless they wheel of the year tells them it’s time to hear it. A call to change and transform, to die and be reborn. In my path as a pagan, I come from an indigenous background, I have traveled in body, mind and spirit cross cultures to better understand my own past, to understand the Alchemies of the soul.

Along that path I have understood that ritual is transformational. Every time I am in the presence of the divine I am changed and healed. Yet when I traveled outside of my roots into the modern world so many ignore the call of death in their ritual. The call to let go and surrender to the divine, to commune with the God and Goddess, is a pivotal role: the Alchemy of the soul.

In Mexico, I learned about this alchemy as the rites of Coatlicue an ancestral deity ruling over life and death. Her rites were those of shamanic initiation, the dismemberment of the initiate and his reconstruction as a being that holds the wisdom of the ancestors.

Once that pivotal moment is passed I learned the Alchemy of Tezcatlipoca. His rites are of initiation into the darkest parts of one’s own soul. His mysteries are for the ones destined to tame their own fire and harness it into the power to weave destiny. It is the magic of the Ancestors.

Now in a later stage of my development I learn the Alchemy of duality. My Ancestors called this the teachings of Quetzalcoatl and Xochiquetzal. The ancient Egyptians called it the Alchemies of Isis and Osiris and the Alchemies of Horus. Their teaching is the teaching of embracing change, the inner change that fortifies the soul and life-force in order to withstand the change that is the ultimate test of the Alchemist: the culmination of the alchemical process, the attainment of eternal life. A mystery that can only be lived, a choice moment to be in this world or in spirit. That too is the magic of the Ancestors.

Throughout the world, religion is centered on eternal life. Some along the never-ending cycle of re-incarnation. Some in the rebirth after death into an eternal moment of bliss and rest. Yet there are some that only embrace this moment and this life; it is in this moment and life that some religions find death and rebirth.

In the rebirth of Paganism in the western world, so many have ceased to hear the call of the Ancestors. The teachings of the departed are more or less confined to grieving the dead and honoring their memory when the natural world turns to darkness. I must tell you, there is far more to it than that.

The Alchemies of which I speak are the teachings of those who have lived them and mastered them. Blood bonds or not, we are all descendants of our spiritual lines. The Alchemies of the soul are the legacy of the ancient priests and priestesses of the Gods.

The role of the Alchemies is to prepare the Initiate for eternal joy and mastery, be it in the afterlife among the dearly departed or in the ever-present moment that is this world.

The call to the Alchemical mysteries of the ancients lies through the land of the ancestors. It is a call to acknowledge the need for death in life. Not giving up the joys of the world, but to give up what keeps us apart from divinity. It said among initiates of mysteries schools that the true magician must jump the great chasm to achieve the great work. One of the dual secret meanings of this phrase is that the chasm is both internal (states of mind) and spiritual: the chasm between one’s self and divinity itself. As voodoo practitioners say to westerners under a different context: “ You people go to church and pray to God; we go to church and become God”. You see the inner mysteries path of the ancients is simple. It is found in words of Doreen Valiente’s poem, “The Charge of the Goddess”:

“…If what thou seek that does not find within, thou shall never find without. For I am that which has been with thee from the beginning, and I am that which is attained at the end of desire…”

The path to desire lies through the path of death and rebirth. Through letting go and being transformed, it is a path of internal sacrifice, letting go of what separates us from the Gods, our Ancestors and all creation, sacred from the times of the ancients to this day. As it is said in the Charge of the God:

“Let my name be within the body that sings, for all acts of willing sacrifice are my rituals…”

Let us not forget the call the Gods made to the Ancestors long ago. A call passed on to us. A call to death and rebirth, life and afterlife. A call that shall echo in the minds and souls of the initiates through all eternity…

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Your Ancient Symbol Card for January 2nd is The Crow

Your Ancient Symbol Card for Today

The Crow

The Crow is the trusted messenger that alerts its allies to both danger and opportunity. Although they may appear playful and too opportunistic to be trusted, Crows are in fact powerful and trustworthy. The Crow sees and hears all. When The Crow reports it is best to listen as their news is always important and presented accurately.

As a daily card, The Crow indicates that you will soon receive news that will either protect you from loss or lead you too opportunities doorstep. To fully realize the advantage the information will soon receive carries with it you will need to react to it quickly and with sureness.

Egyptian Dream Scrying

Egyptian Dream Scrying

Ancient Egyptians believed in the power of dreams to bring messages from their many gods. Their methods of dream scrying go back over 5000 years and were recorded in their ancient texts and on hieroglyphic writings.  Some of their techniques were later used by other ancient civilizations, as in ancient Greece thousands of years ago.

Ritual Dream Scrying Techniques

On the day you scry – find a place of solitude and remain alone.

Do not consume alcohol, eat for 4 hours before your begin, or engage in sexual activities.

Take a warm relaxing bath then anoint your temples with olive oil. You will need an oil lamp as used with lamp scrying.

On a short narrow strip of white linen write the name of the Egyptian God and the purpose for the dream scrying. Twist the linen strip into a wick and insert into the oil of the lamp. Place the lamp on a table beside your bed. Using the ink draw the image of the dream God upon your left palm.

Light your lamp. Kneel before the lamp. Invocation:

    Concentrating on the image on your left hand recite the following invocation :
    “Thoth, (use name of desired god) I invoke, blessed power of dreams divine, Angel of future fates, swift wings are thine, Great source of oracles to human kind, When stealing soft, and whispering to the mind, Through sleep’s sweet silence and the gloom of night, Thy power awake the sight, To silent souls the will of heaven relates, And silently reveals their future fates.”

Concentrate on your question. Around your left hand wrap a piece of black linen about four inches wide and about thirty inches long. The black cloth is called the black eye of Isis. – the Magic of Isis – or Black Isis.

Blow out the lamp’s flame. Clear your mind and go to sleep.

Have a tape recorder or pen and paper beside your bed so that when you awaken you may record your dreams while still fresh in your mind.

You will find that the dream will come to you in a voice that is clear and powerful rather than in dream images. Sometimes the messages are in symbols – cryptic forms. Take your time in deciphering the messages you have received. You may want to use a dream dictionary to interpret messages given, if possible.  They are often archetypes from your subconscious mind, perhaps from an Egyptian lifetime.

Source:
Crystalinks.com

Your Ancient Symbol Card for Jan. 1st is The Sword

Your Ancient Symbol Card for Today

The Sword

The Sword is a a call to action. It indicates challenges are before you and to attain your goals you will have to address them. The Sword does not suggest rash or underhanded behavior on your part. Indeed, while actions indicated by The Sword are decisive, they are based on the power of your wisdom and ethics. The strength of The Sword lies in the moral purity of your actions.

As a daily card, The Sword suggest a time in which you will face external challenges to attaining your goals. These trials are likely to come from a person or persons who stand to gain from your loss or delays in you moving forward. You can expect underhanded play and surprises. Fortunately your position is far stronger than those who scheme to usurp you. Address challenges as they arise and all will be well.

Your Ancient Symbol Card for Dec. 30th is Chance

Your Ancient Symbol Card for Today

Chance

The Chance card denotes a period in which taking risks may produce positive results. This doesn’t mean head off to a casino with your life’s savings! What is suggested is that you should make gains by taking a well calculated risk. For the power of Chance to be fully realized it is essential that you pick your risk carefully, move forward with conviction, and above all else don’t get greedy!

As a daily card, Chance implies you are currently in a place where taking a chance is likely to produce substantial rewards. In other words, take a few calculated steps out on the proverbial limb, but remember if you take it too far you are likely to lose all that you gain and possibly more.

Our Deity for December 30th – Hecate, Goddess of the Witches

Today’s Deity – Hecate ~ Goddess of the Witches

Hecate is a powerful goddess representing the aspects of the Triple Goddess: goddess of fertility and plenty; goddess of the moon; and goddess of the night and the underworld, which led to her evolving as the patroness of magic and Witchcraft. She mixed fertility with death to be used as earth power. She has been called supreme, both in heaven and hell. It is believed that even Zeus called on her whenever he wished to grant something to someone. Hecate is portrayed as the most powerful – who could give aplenty or destroy totally. She is said to have the power to bestow on or withhold from mortals any gifts she chose. All the secret powers of Nature were at her command. She had control over birth, life, and death. Because of her power in the three areas of nature, heaven and earth she was represented as a triple form.

She is most known as an underworld goddess; the Goddess of the Dark of the Moon, the nights that there is no moon and the world above is as dark as the world below. She was the overseer of the world of the dead. At night she traveled roaming the earth accompanied by her dogs, Hermes, and dead souls. Some say she sent demons from the lower world at night and that she causes nightmares and insanity, and was called “the Nameless One.”

Aspects and Imagery

  • She is “The goddess that troubles the reason of men.”
  • The Greeks called her “The Hag of the Dead”
  • She is also called “the most lovely one” a title of the moon.
  • The owl is her messenger, and the willow is her tree.
  • Rides a chariot pulled by dragons.
  • Depicted wearing a gleaming headdress of stars.
  • She was connected to the goddess Artemis, Diana, and Persephone.
  • Closely associated with Eleusinian Mysteries.

Festivals and Celebrations

  • On the Greek isle of Aegina a festival was held every year in her honor. Mystery rites were held in her behalf.
  • On August 13 in Greece at the House of Storms and Fertility. It was held to aid in keeping the harvest storms from destroying the harvest.
  • Hallowmas held on October 31 to honor Hecate at a time when the veil between the world was the thinnest.
  • In Italy by the lake of Avernus, there was a scared dark grove of Hecate. In private worship to her followers were offered Hecates suppers. The leftovers were placed outdoors as offerings to this goddess and her hounds.

Sacred to Hecate

  • Key, torch, cauldron, dogs, owls, wild animals

Attributes

  • Poppy, animals dog, willow, star

Misc

  • Medea was a priestess of Hecate. In some accounts she is actually Hecate’s daughter.
  • The appearance of black howling dogs at night meant that Hecate was near, and their barking announced her approach. “If the dogs are traveling at night, it means Hecate is about.”
  • She is only visible to dogs.
  • Her name was called at night at the cross-roads of cities.
  • She is said to live near the tombs of the victims of murder.

The above article is a compliation of materials from the sources listed below:

Sibylline Order

Your Charm for December 21 is The Frog

Your Charm for Today

The Frog

Today’s Meaning:     

The frog represents good health, physically and emotionally. This aspect shall remain in a good light as long as you maintain good health.

General Description:    

This is an old Roman Amulet but the charm dates from prehistoric times. The Frog was the emblem of Hegt, the Egyptian goddess of abundance fruitfulness, fertility and plenty. From Egypt these myths spread and similar goddesses were worshipped under different names — Ishtar in Assyria, Belit in Babylonia, Al-ilat in Arabia, Aphrodite in Greece, Venus in Rome. The Frog, cut in amber, is a popular talisman. In Italy Greece and Turkey, it is still worn to bring good health, prosperity, and abundance of all the good things of this earth.

Deity of the Day – The Hesperides

Deity of the Day

The Hesperides, Daughters of the Evening

“…amidst the gardens fair

Of Hesperus and his daughters three,

That sing about the golden tree.” (“Comus” by Milton)

The Hesperides are Daughters of Nyx, the Mother Night – although later mythology has Them as daughters of Atlas or of Hesperus. The three sisters – Aegle (the luminous one), Erytheia (the crimson one) and Hesperia (the evening one) – are nymphs who live in a beautiful garden, situated in the Arcadian Mountains (Greece) or, alternatively, at the western extreme of the Mediterranean, near Mt. Atlas. In this garden grows the tree with the golden apples of immortality. This garden is guarded by Ladon, a dragon with a hundred heads and who has the gift of human speech. The Hesperides are known for Their sweet singing voices and also have the ability to change Their shapes and become trees – Aegle into a willow, Erytheia into an elm and Hesperia into a poplar.

The only person who ever succeeded in obtaining some of the immortal golden apples from the garden of the Hesperides was Hercules, who tricked the God Atlas to get the apples for him. The apples were later returned to the garden by Athena because the sacred fruit were not to remain outside the garden.

The Hesperides have as associations: the apple; the color gold; immortality; gardens; and the trees poplar, elm and willow.

Celebrating Spirituality 365 Days A Year – Halcyon, Sophia

December 15th and 16th

Halcyon, Sophia

In ancient Greece, December 15th began the Halcyon Days–the seven days before and the seven days after the Winter Solstice. It was during this time that the sea was calm and the kingfisher, a magickal bird and symbol of the Goddess Alcyon, could lay her eggs. Legend has that it was the bird nesting upon the waters that made them calm, thus creating an atmosphere of peace and tranquilty.

December 16th is dedicated to the Goddess Sophia. According to Hebrew philosophy, Sophia is the personification of wisdom, the inner wisdom that functions of itself. Many Greek churches were dedicate to Sophie and in the Sistine Chapel’s painting of God rreaching out a finger to touch Adam, she appears behind God. A Gnostic Aeon, Sophia was so filled with the desire to generate out of herself, without a spouse, that she gave birth to the whole cosmos, including a daughter Sophia Akhamoth, who in turn began to generate, but on a lower and denser place. It it Sophia Akhamoth who in turn began to generate but on lower and denser plane.  It is Sophia Akhamoth who brings wisdom to humankind.

Today’s Goddess is Nemesis

Today’s Goddess is Nemesis

Nemesis, Goddess of Retribution and Daughter of the Night

“The hand of Nemesis balances the scales of justice.

She untangles the threads spun by the Fates.

Lift the burden of this problem, great Nemesis.

Guide me to the solution.

If there can be no harmony, separate us from the other.

Untangle my life-thread, Nemesis.

This I do ask with a sincere heart…” (ritual for Nemesis, ‘Moon Magick’ by D.J. Conway)

When Nyx, Mother Night, gave birth to a silver egg in the sea of chaos, this was symbolism for saying that She gave birth to the moon…. From this egg came the daughters of Nyx, one of whom was Nemesis.

Nemesis is known as the Goddess of Retribution and daughter of the Night. In the later patriarchal deity days of Greece She is seen as a monstrous figure of revenge and anger, however in earlier Greece Her nature was more as an abstract force of justice rather than retaliation.

In Greek mythology, Nemesis is portrayed as serious and thoughtful looking woman wearing a silver crown adorned with stag horns. She is often pictured as carrying a wheel of fortune in one hand and an apple bough in the other, with a scourge hanging at Her waist. Nemesis had Her primary sanctuary at Rhamnus, a village in the northern part of Attica. Nemesis was said to be a check on Tyche, Goddess of Fortune and also was said to be an attendant to Themeis, the Goddess of law.

Nemesis is honored in the celebration known as ‘Nemesea’ or the Festival of Nemesis on August 23rd. Because of this celebration, Nemesis is associated with the August full moon, which is commonly called ‘The Corn Moon’.

Your Charm for November 6th is Libra the Balance

Your Charm for Today

Libra the Balance

Today’s Meaning:

This aspect of your life will be strongly influenced by a person who is diplomatic, urbane, romantic, charming, easygoing, sociable, idealistic and peaceable. This person is someone you know socially.

General Description:  

Seventh sign of the Zodiac, Sept 23rd to Oct 24th. Venus is the ruling planet; correct metal, Copper. Those born under Libra’s influence were supposed to be affable, courteous even tempered, painstaking, and with marked perceptive qualities. The Libra stones are the Opal, Chrysolite and Sardonyx. To the ancients the Opal was the Stone of Mystery its flashing and glowing rainbow hues suggested occult powers, and it was regarded as sacred in the East. In India it was believed to strengthen the mind and clear the brain; in Greece to give the wearer the power of prophecy and foresight, and during the 14th century used for strengthening the eyesight.

Your Charm for Sunday, October 20th is Libra The Scales

Your Charm for Today


Today’s Meaning:

This aspect of your life will be strongly influenced by a person who is diplomatic, urbane, romantic, charming, easygoing, sociable, idealistic and peaceable. This person is someone you know socially.

General Description:  

Seventh sign of the Zodiac, Sept 23rd to Oct 24th. Venus is the ruling planet; correct metal, Copper. Those born under Libra’s influence were supposed to be affable, courteous even tempered, painstaking, and with marked perceptive qualities. The Libra stones are the Opal, Chrysolite and Sardonyx. To the ancients the Opal was the Stone of Mystery its flashing and glowing rainbow hues suggested occult powers, and it was regarded as sacred in the East. In India it was believed to strengthen the mind and clear the brain; in Greece to give the wearer the power of prophecy and foresight, and during the 14th century used for strengthening the eyesight.