Deities Associated With Friday – Aphrodite, Greek Goddess of Love

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Deities Associated With Friday – Aphrodite, Greek Goddess of Love

Aphrodite was the Greek goddess of love and sexuality. According to legend, she was born fully formed from the white sea form that arose when the god Uranus was castrated. She came ashore on the island of Cyprus, and later was married off by Zeus to Hephaistos, the deformed craftsman of Olympus. Despite being married to Hephaistos, Aphrodite took her job as a goddess of sexuality seriously, and had a multitude of lovers, but one of her favorites was the warrior god Ares.

At one point, Helios, the sun god, caught Ares and Aphrodite romping around, and told Hephaistos what he had seen. Hephaistos caught the two of them in a net, and invited all the other gods and goddesses to laugh at their shame… but they had none whatsoever. In fact, Aphrodite and Ares had a good laugh about the whole thing, and didn’t particularly care what anyone thought. In the end, Ares ended up paying Hephaistos a fine for his inconvenience, and the whole matter was dropped.

At one point, Aphrodite had a fling with Adonis, the young hunter god. He was killed by a wild boar one day, and some tales indicate that the boar might have been a jealous Ares in disguise.

Aphrodite had several sons, including Priapus, Eros, and Hermaphroditus.

In many myths and legends, Aphrodite is portrayed as self-absorbed and cranky. It would seem that like many of the other Greek gods, she spent a lot of time meddling in the affairs of mortals, mostly for her own amusement. She was instrumental in the cause of the Trojan War; Aphrodite offered Helen of Sparta to Paris, the prince of Troy, and then when he saw Helen for the first time, Aphrodite made sure he was inflamed with lust, thus leading to Helen’s abduction and a decade of war.

A festival was held regularly to honor Aphrodite, appropriately called the Aphrodisia. At her temple in Corinth, revelers often paid tribute to Aphrodite by having rambunctious sex with her priestesses. The temple was later destroyed by the Romans, and not rebuilt, but fertility rites appear to have continued in the area.

In addition to her association with the sea and shells, Aphrodite is connected with dolphins and swans, apples and pomegranates, and roses.

 

Author

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

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Sunday’s Witchery

Blue Moon Kisses

Sunday’s Witchery

Those ambitious, successful spells and charms will be heightened by working on the day of the week that has the planetary influence of the sun. So light those sunny candles, wear some luminous colors, and break out the gold jewelry! Bake up some cinnamon rolls or low-fat cinnamon muffins for an enchanting family breakfast. Take an orange with you to eat at lunch today. Try using a little magickal aromatherapy and burn some cinnamon-scented incense to encourage success and wealth today. Make the talisman to keep your solar magick with you. Sprinkle some dried marigold petals around your house-or across the threshold-to pull triumph and protection toward you and your family.

Get outside and tip up your face to the sun. Take a walk outside, and soak up some sunshine! Acknowledge the power of Sunna or Helios as they blaze across the sky and bring courage and motivation into your life. Sit outside at sunrise on a Sunday morning and bask in its warm, rosy-golden glow Acknowledge Brigid as the inner, creative spark of imagination and inspiration. She can help these gifts burn brightly within your own soul. Use your imagination and create your own brand of witchery and magick. Here comes the sun, and it’s your turn to shine!

—–Book of Witchery: Spells, Charms & Correspondences for Every Day of the Week
Ellen Dugan

Sunday’s Witchery

wiccan girl
Sunday’s Witchery

Those ambitious, successful spells and charms will be heightened by working on the day of the week that has the planetary influence of the sun. So light those sunny candles, wear some luminous colors, and break out the gold jewelry! Bake up some cinnamon rolls or low-fat cinnamon muffins for an enchanting family breakfast. Take an orange with you to eat at lunch today. Try using a little magickal aromatherapy and burn some cinnamon-scented incense to encourage success and wealth today. Make the talisman to keep your solar magick with you. Sprinkle some dried marigold petals around your house-or across the threshold-to pull triumph and protection toward you and your family.

Get outside and tip up your face to the sun. Take a walk outside, and soak up some sunshine! Acknowledge the power of Sunna or Helios as they blaze across the sky and bring courage and motivation into your life. Sit outside at sunrise on a Sunday morning and bask in its warm, rosy-golden glow Acknowledge Brigid as the inner, creative spark of imagination and inspiration. She can help these gifts burn brightly within your own soul. Use your imagination and create your own brand of witchery and magick. Here comes the sun, and it’s your turn to shine!

—–Book of Witchery: Spells, Charms & Correspondences for Every Day of the Week
Ellen Dugan

The Wicca Book of Days for August 17 – Sunflower Story

The Wicca Book of Days for August 17

Sunflower Story

 

As a Leonian day, August 17’s “planetary” ruler is the sun, with which many Gods have been identified, including Helios. A tale told by the ancient Greeks about this golden deity concerns the nymph Clytia (or Clytie), who feel in love with Helios, but whose passion was not returned. Jealous of his affair with Leucothoe, a Babylonian princess, Clytia told her strict father of it, whereupon he buried his daughter alive. As for Clytia, she eventually wasted away gazing at Helios, whereupon she was transformed into a sunflower, which still follows the movement of the sun with its head.

 

A Sun-loving Flower

 

Place a sunflower on your altar, both to concentrate your thoughts on the Sun and as a reminder of the destruction inherent in burning passion. When they have ripened, harvest the seeds. Remove the tough cases to find a delicious, nutritious snack.

Calendar of the Moon for July 12

Calendar of the Moon

12 Duir/Skirophorion

Skirophoria

Colors: Grey and brown
Element: Earth
Altar: Divide the altar in half, with one grey cloth and one brown cloth. On the grey side place a ship and a fish for Poseidon, and for Athena a stack of books selected for their wisdom, the figure of a small city, and a glass cup of wine. On the brown side lay a sickle, a hoe, a basket full of poppies, many small bowls of grain, a cup of ale, and the figure of a small peasant’s hut. On the line between them, place the figure of a golden sun. Before it should be a bowl containing Pentaploa, a mixture of wine, honey, cheese, grains, and olive oil.
Offerings: If you are rural, visit the city. If you are urban or suburban, visit a farm. Do so in the spirit of discovery and appreciation. Also, the day’s exercise at Gymnastika should be running a race, and the runners should carry grapevines in their arms, in honor of the boughs brought to the temple of Athena by ancient runners. Deposit the grapevines before Athena’s shrine.
Daily Meal: Eat food on your trip, wherever you go.

Skirophoria Invocation

(To be given by five people, one each representing Athena, Poseidon, Demeter, Persephone, and Helios. They should wear white, blue, green, red, and gold respectively. They should come together under a white canopy.)

Athena: On this day, long ago, so tradition says, the first harvest was cut of the first grain that mankind ever sowed. Ever since then, the people have been fed from the land. Those of us whose hearts are in the city do come before you today to honor the givers of our nourishment.
Poseidon: From the metropolises of the coasts to the great gathering places of plateau and mountain we come on this day. For we could not live without you to support us. We feed from you, and give you little in return, save trinkets and trouble.
Demeter: We thank you for your honor, and we promise in turn that our abundance shall never cease, so long as you continue your respect. Our lands must remain clean and unfettered by disease and pollution. So long as you grant us that, and safety, and fair commerce, there will always be an equal exchange.
Persephone: We thank you for your honor, but you are wrong in that you give us nothing. You are the keepers of thought and culture. When darkness rushes across the land, as it sometimes must, it is in your domain that such things are kept. You are the memory of our people, as we in our eternal round of seasons cannot always be.
Helios: I have come before you to hear your oaths. Will you serve and protect each other?
All: We shall be as two hands on one body.
Helios: So it is witnessed by the overarching Sun. So shall it be written, so shall it be done.
All Present: So it is witnessed by the overarching Sun. So shall it be written, so shall it be done.

(The Pentaploa is passed and shared, and the ale and wine are poured as a libation.)

[Pagan Book of Hours]

Solstice Day, Chasing the Clouds Away!

by Andy

Litha is the time of the sun. While  the sun was ascending at Beltaine, it  is in its full glory now. In the northern  latitudes, which we share with the  Northern European peasants who created many of our traditions, it doesn’t  even get dark until 10 o’clock. All  around the world, sun gods and goddesses from different mythologies  have Their special rites on this, the  longest day. They come in Their various guises, fighting the dark and bringing fertile, healing light. Today is the  day of Their greatest victories.

In ancient Greece, Helios was the  God of the Sun. Every day, He rode  across the sky in a chariot pulled by  four wild, flaming steeds. Every day  the horses fought Helios, but every day  He was their master. Helios had a son  named Phaëthon. He was a mortal and  with pride did he watch his father ride  across the sky. Phaëthon loved his  father and wanted to know more  about him and be like him. In short, he  wanted to drive the chariot for a day.

Phaëthon begged his father to  grant him his fondest wish. Helios, loving his son, agreed. Then the son revealed that his wish was to drive the  chariot, and Helios had to grant it.  Phaëthon put on the crown of golden  rays, mounted the chariot, and off he  went. Across the heavens he rode,  lighting the sky. The horses began their  daily struggle, but Phaëthon could not  master them. The horses rode wild.  They towed the chariot at the zodiac  animals who became enraged and  drove the it from the sky. When  Phaëthon neared the earth, it dried and  cracked. Lakes boiled away. Then he  rode up high again and the earth froze.

Zeus saw all this and knew He had  to step in. To prevent Phaëthon from  destroying the earth, He hurled his  great thunderbolts, slaying Phaëthon  and destroying the chariot. Helios’ grief  was terrible, and he vowed that no one  but He would ever drive His chariot  again.

The gods are at the height of their  power and majesty at Litha and now  is the time to meet them up close, but  not too close. It is dangerous to for  mortals to meet and interact with the  divine. As Phaëthon wanted to know  the Sun God, so do we go to the God  or Goddess. Let us hope that we don’t  get burned.

Earth Goddesses – DEMETER

Earth Goddesses – DEMETER 

Demeter is the Greek goddess of the grains, agriculture, and fertility. She is the daughter of the Titans Cronus and Rhea. She is an Olympian.

Demeter is so prevalent in the Greek myths that she is even responsible for the changing of the seasons. In Homer’s Hymn to Demeter, he relates the tale. Demeter, whom Homer describes as a stately goddess, had a child with Zeus named Persephone. Unbeknown to Demeter, Zeus had planned with Hades to ensnare the young Persephone so that Hades would have a wife and therefore a queen of the Underworld. Zeus cunningly brought forth the brightly colored narcissus flower in an attempt to lure Persephone away while she was at play in the fields.

As Persephone set about gathering a bouquet of lovely irises, roses, hyacinths, violets and crocuses, she caught sight of the most magnificent flower in the field – the narcissus. Persephone, stunned by the flower’s beauty, reached out with both hands to pick it for her bouquet. As she did, the Earth opened wide and Hades, riding upon his golden chariot led by immortal horses, snatched the beautiful Persephone and took her wit him into the Underworld. Persephone cried out for her father to save her. Her cries echoed across the countryside, yet no one except Demeter heard her.

Demeter searched the Earth for nine days, grieving so desperately that she touched not a single drop of drink or bite of food. On the tenth day, at the crack of dawn, Hecate spoke with Demeter. She sent Demeter to speak with Helios, the sun god. Demeter begged Helios to tell her who had taken her beloved daughter. Helios replied that it was Zeus himself and explained the role of Hades in the plot.

Demeter was furious and grief stricken. She left Olympus and wandered to Eleusis. For a year she stilled the Earth from fruitfulness. In her grief, the flowers no longer bloomed and the gardens withered and died. The Earth was barren. Zeus sent Iris to try to persuade Demeter to come home, but Demeter would not budge. One by one, each of the gods tried to talk Demeter into returning to Olympus. She refused them all, saying that she would never return until she could lay eyes again on her beloved daughter.

Zeus upon hearing this, sent Hermes to speak with Hades and attempt to cajole him into releasing Persephone. Hades agreed and asked only that Persephone keep him in her heart fondly. With that he tricked her into eating three pomegranate seeds, thereby assuring that she had to return to him. Persephone happily ate the seeds and went on her way back to her mother. When Demeter was greeted by the sight of her daughter, the Earth was once again fruitful and the people rejoiced. Afraid, Demeter asked her daughter if she had eaten anything while in the Underworld, to which Persephone replied that she had eaten the seeds of a pomegranate. Demeter explained that she must live in the Underworld for one third of each year. She swore that while Persephone was on the Earth, she would hold it in bloom for her daughter’s pleasure., but that while Persephone was in the Underworld, it would be barren and cold. Thus, the season were born.

Demeter, with her somewhat ironic sense of humor, placed the poppy in the corn and barley fields. She put all of her sweetness into the fig, which grows alongside wild herbs. As the poppy and the fig grow around the base of her more substantial foodstuffs, they represent the dark side of Demeter. The dark side is the side that holds the life and death of mortals in her hands and carries the seeds of each in her womb. Demeter represents both hunger and abundance.

In one myth, Demeter condemns a man to eternal hunger for daring to attempt to chop down her sacred grove to make a roof for his hall from the wood. The man subsequently eats until there is only one thing left to eat – himself. He devours his own limbs.

Demeter was also a goddess of fertility and, in one myth, coupled with a human in the field. The pairing produced a child. Soon after Demeter became known as a goddess who guarded marriage and was included in ancient marriage rites. Concubines and the like were condemned to her stone gardens, where no plants could ripen and bloom. Demeter’s festival, held in late autumn was celebrate by legitimate wives and included a ritual sowing of the field. It was conducted with the hope of a harvest of beautiful children, a bounty borne from human seed.

“In Perfect Love and Perfect Trust”

“In Perfect Love and Perfect Trust”

Author: Rebecca Ivy MoonPanther
Such powerful and inspiring words, spoken by some of the most powerful and inspirational Wiccan people. What does this phrase mean? And, as all smart-ass people will say (like me, teeheehee) WAT U MEAN BY PERFECT??

Just finished studying, so here’s my take on it.

We as Wiccan men and women are, for the most part, law-abiding citizens, correct? We may occasionally run that red when were late for work, not necessarily speak up when that cashier gives you five extra bucks back, but we don’t draw the line. We abide by state and federal laws, so religious laws should be no different.

Now, I am not saying that every Wiccan uses the Wiccan Rede. Some are followers of the older faith and do not choose to abide by the new rules. Just as we need to accept all faiths, we need to accept that those who may not use that Rede are not evil or weird or freaks. Just different, like you and me.

Back to what I was saying. “In Perfect Love and Perfect Trust” has been debated a lot. My take on it is that true, there is no such thing as a literal “perfect”, except when speaking of the Divine. They are the only perfection. And that’s why perfection is unattainable.

We are all made perfectly, but even so, it is at our core, simply because we come from the Gods. However, at the same time, we are all imperfect as well. That is simply because the physical plane has to be imperfect. In fact, to have symmetry of our limbs, eyes, even (as women) our bosoms are unsymmetrical. Every girl can tell you which one is bigger (LOL) . I wouldn’t exactly recommend asking every one though. So, we come from utter perfection, but in order to be on this plane, we must be imperfect.

But as we delve deeper and deeper into this faith, seeking out the answers of the universe, we try to somehow, reach or see one tiny aspect of divinity.

We already know of it, but no one truly sees it. The true aspect of Divinity is Love. It seemed so simple to me, at first, but after reading this article on The Witches Voice, it became clear that it was far from it. As SilverEagle wrote: “There is a lot of resistance to this practice for most of us. We have within us a pseudo self that treasures the illusion. It is important for us to question this self.”

We love Lady Luna and Helios because we trust them to always have our best interest in mind. We all have gone through many tests just by surviving childbirth, and have endured more since. And we will not be done until we cross to the other side of that black veil. Once we do, we know that the Goddess has shown us enough for this life, and it is time to start over. She loves us enough to put us through these trials, and Helios gives us the light and warmth that we need to see that we always have the strength to persevere. And we love her because we maintain her strength in all we do.

Every person is of the Goddess, and though you may not like the person for as far as you can throw him or her, or you may not even know him or her, but you love them. This because inside, they are of the Goddess.

Now, I have covered perfect, love……ah! Trust. Shall we?

Trust is a very touchy thing for me. It has always been hard for me. Because of my tests, I have learned, like most others, that every person is not worth trusting, even if they look, act, or even may seem like the best person. They have gone through almost everything I have! So? What in this wide world and beyond makes you think that someone will not take your kindness and run with it for miles and onward? Perfect trust is not naive. Perfect trust and perfect love are able to check each other. If I don’t trust them, I cannot love them, and vice versa. And just because a person says that they believe in this statement, or are even Wiccan or Pagan, that does not necessarily mean that they deserve your trust, or mean what they say.

Perfect trust demands intelligence, and especially with our limited trust of others in this day and age. Anyone can stab you in the back, and if they are truly of merit, then they won’t mind if you question their means. This is your life, your body, your mind, and your spirit. Let no one, NO ONE, be they man, beast, deity, inanimate or alive, take away your right to do what is right and righteous for you.

Be selfish! That is your right! And yes, included in this is the event of you taking away your own voice. Trust and love yourself. We all know that Self-confidence and Self-love ride in the same boat. Confidence is trust! So have the confidence in your stride and dance among the unenlightened!

Now, because each aspect of this phrase has been questioned, how do we combine the three to make this nifty Wiccan phrase? You love as the Gods do and trust in the Gods and Fate itself. By agreeing to enter the circle, you are vulnerable, but because you are of the Gods, and are able to love perfectly, and have perfect faith in the universe and your own will and intentions you may choose to surrender any psychological barriers and enter, or say, I am not ready to give up my distrust and stand. You have the choice to make that decision. You are not being forced to enter, so work to attain that light inside of you and do no enter until you are ready to surrender all your troubles to the Divine. I know I have a long way to go, so do not feel alone.

So, what have we learned?

I have learned that carpal tunnel is no excuse to not type hahaha.

Anyway, summary: Perfect is simply, of the divine. Because we are of the Gods, we have the gift of Love, as well as Free Will– to give trust and question our surroundings. So, to invoke perfect love and perfect trust is to say, you and I are of the Gods, and we both are going to follow their will and serve them to the best of our ability because that is why we are here. That is why She dances so freely. That is why I am writing this explanation.