Full Moon Goddesses  

Posted by Stella Clark

Full Moon Goddesses Image
"SHE RISES AT SUNSET WHEN THE MOON AND SUN ARE ON OPPOSITE SIDES OF THE EARTH AND OPPOSITE ASTROLOGICAL SIGNS. FULL MOON TIME IS A TIME OF DEEP INTENSITY AND CLARITY, OF STRONG ENERGIES THAT SEEM TO BE PULLING ONE IN OPPOSITE DIRECTIONS; IT IS A TIME OF HIGH CREATIVITY, EXCITEMENT, TENSION, AND TREMENDOUS POTENTIAL. THE SEED OF THE NEW MOON IS NOW REALIZED AND ESTABLISHED. ONE MAY FEEL THE URGE TO CONNECT PSYCHICALLY WITH SOMEONE YOU LOVE WHO IS FAR AWAY. TAKE TIME TO WRITE A LETTER TO SOMEONE YOU HAVEN'T SEEN IN A LONG TIME. BE YOUR MOST CREATIVE SELF FOR ELECTRICITY IN THE AIR IS AT ITS GREATEST JUST BEFORE AND ON THE DAY OF THE FULL MOON...AND WHEN SHE ACTUALLY PEAKS IN HER FULLNESS, YOU WILL ACTUALLY FEEL A SENSE OF RELIEF. THE FULL MOON REPRESENTS THE MATURITY, NURTURING, AND RICHNESS OF THE MOTHER ASPECT OF THE TRIPLE GODDESS."

One such goddess is Aspelenie, an Eastern European goddess of hearth and home. I've found no photos of Her, but it is said She took the form of a friendly serpent. The domestic green snake was considered a highly revered animal in Baltic folklore, and to have one cross your path indicated a future marriage or the birth of a child. Among the pre-Christian Lithuanians, She was considered a servant of the sun goddess, Saule, and was thought to bless the home with abundance and protection. The corners of a home and the area behind the stove are Her sacred areas.

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Ariadne The Labyrinth Of The Soul  

Posted by Stella Clark

Ariadne The Labyrinth Of The Soul Image
Ariadne was the daughter of Minos, the king of Crete. It so happened that Minos needed to settle a dispute with his brother and prayed to the sea god, Poseidon, to send him a bull as a sign that the throne rightly belonged to him. Minos promised that he would then sacrifice the animal to Poseidon. So, in response, Poseidon sent a magnificent white bull. The story goes that Minos liked the bull so much that he decided to keep it and instead sacrificed another bull...making Poseidon so angry that he cursed Ariadne's family, causing the Queen to have passionate feelings towards the bull. Well, eventually the Queen and the bull mated, and she became pregnant...giving birth to a boy with the head and tail of a bull and the body of a man, the Minotaur. Minos banished him into the labyrinth blackness below the palace. From thence on, Ariadne's half-brother was fed on sacrificial children sent from Athens every seven years. Heroic Theseus was one of the 14 youths sent to Crete to face death at the hands of the Minotaur.

When Theseus arrived to participate in the bull games. Ariadne too one look at him and her passions ignited. She devised a plan to help him to slay the minotaur and return safely ghrough the dark tunnels of the labyrinth. So, through the labyrinth he crawled, quietly, so as not to awaken the sleeping Minotaur. Wrapped around his wrist was a ball of yarn provided by Ariadne which he had tied to the pillar at the gate at the entrance to the maze so that he could find his way back to the outer world. For her complicity, Theseus promised that he would marry her and take her to Athens.

Theseus succeeds and that evening, he and Ariadne escaped...she having betrayed her family. The next night they reached the island of Nexos and, exhausted by travelling and passion, they collapsed into a deep, deep sleep. But, the next morning when Ariadne awakened, she discovered that her lover had vanished, and while standing at the edge of the shore she could make the sails of his ship in the distance. The ungrateful Theseus was pursuing his way home...without her. Ariadne, abandoned and betrayed, descended into her own complex world on the shores of Nexos.

Aphrodite, the goddess who had ignited her passions, those passions which led to her suffering, then appeared to Ariadne and revealed her true fate. Ariadne was to marry her real soul mate, the divine Dionysus who celebrated their sacred marriage by offering her the crown as the symbol of their intimacy and eternal union. Soon after their marriage, Ariadne gave birth to many famous children.

Ariadne is the one who chooses Theseus, finding him attractive and falling in love with him. She also sees him as a way to escape her father's home. Blinded by her own passions, Ariadne had been a willing participant in her abandonment. In betraying her family to follow Theseus, she had set the cycle of betrayal in motion. Alone, she was forced to connect with her internal world.

This myth portrays the heart's painful journey when connection to the inner self is severed and sacrificed to the lover. Ariadne chose to follow her lover's course rather than her own internal labyrinth journey, and lost her direction....thus, loosing contact with her own inner wisdom. Abandoned, she could no longer define herself exclusively through her partner paving the way for a more authentic sense of self to emerge. The painful process she went through of confronting her naive trust and blind faith in Theseus enabled her to find renewal and redemption allowing for a more divine sense of union.

Ariadne's story also teaches us that things may not always happen the way we expect or hope they will, but sometimes these unexpected turns on our paths can lead us to wonderful, new options that we hadn't even considered.

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The Story Of Frau Holle  

Posted by Stella Clark

The Story Of Frau Holle Image
Taken from: Otto Freiher von Reinsberg-D"uringsfeld, "Aberglaube-Sitten-Feste Germanischer Volker, das festliche Jahr", Reprint-Verlag-Leipzig (reprint of the original 1898).

... This is how, in many ways, we have kept the memory of the old heathen goddess of the Germans, Perchta or Perhata, whose name means the magnificent, the light.

Long ago, when the Germanic religion still honored Nature's power, both her blessing and devastating aspects, she was the rain-giving clouds, the spouse of the god of storms. Later, she became a sky queen who, besides mastery over clouds and winds, she also had the power of granting sunshine and prosperity to the fields, and also, as the motherly protector of women's life, she controlled feminine work, namely favoring spinning, and, as Frau Holda or Holle, she kept the souls of the unborn or dead children. In some countries it was said that her home was in a mountain, a magnificent cave, and still in some others, it was in the waters of some fountains or ponds, where it is still said that children come from [this water allows women to become fertile?].

At the turning of the winter sun, with her spouse Wodan, would she hold a procession through the land, which began as a blessing, turning later into a wild hunt.

In the Ukermark, under the names of Frick or Frau Harke, even today, she still haunts Christmas nights as a hunting cloud flying through the skies with a number of howling hounds. Also, she goes from place to place so as to check if the servants have spun all their flax. If she finds a spindle that is still full, she punishes the lazy worker by completely dirtying her spinning.

In the Priegnitz and the Mecklenburg, she takes the name of Fru Gode or Frau Gode and she appears particularly between Holy Christmas night and Three Kings day, in the form of the driver of a wild hunt with yapping and howling hounds. Doors are then kept shut, and nobody goes out in the evenings in order to avoid meeting her. She is often seen as a large and magnificent lady, driven in a car pulled by dogs and it is often said: "if a wheel happens to break, she gives the broken parts to the servant who fixes it, and they become pure gold after a few days."

In Lower Saxony, Frau Holle is a grey-haired old lady with long teeth, who dirties the spindle of the lazy weaver, hides a gift under the compartment of the spindle of the active ones [this piece of equipment is called wockenbreif in the local speech, in place of German Rockenbrief], brings new white shirts to children aged six, and who, in places where she used to be held in reverence, goes through with a car full of New Year gifts each new year's eve, between 9 and 10 p.m.. If she would crack her whip, only the devotees would hear it and go out to receive their gifts.

In the Hesse and the Thuringia, Frau Holle, Holde or Hulda, is described as a beautiful white shining woman with long golden hair of whom it is said, when it snows hard: "Frau Holle is shaking out the feathers of her bed". As the mother of all small creatures, or of the incarnated souls of dead non-baptized, but remembered, children, called "Heimchen" (small home) in Franconia, together with those souls, she takes care of the fertility of the fields that she plows with a golden plow, and she asks the "Heimchen" to irrigate those fields.

It is said that she had her old home in the Saalthal, between Bucha and Wilhemsdorf, but that she left this land due to the lack of gratitude of the citizens of Gosdorf? and R"odern. On a dark evening of the Kings day, she went to a river with her little people and asked for a ride. The driver was afraid at first of the high veiled shape that was surrounded by so many wailing children, but he did as he was asked at last. After three crossings, he found Frau Holla or Perchtha on the beach, busy at repairing her plough that the Heimchen were supposed to carry further. He was then told that his reward would be the shavings left behind. He took this with bad will, unhappy of a such a miserable reward. At home, he threw three pieces of shavings on the windowsill. In the morning he found three lumps of gold in place of the shavings. This is how Frau Perchtha rewarded all the help she received, and often she can still be seen, with her plow, on Three Kings' day, or Perchtenabend (Perchta's evening).

Three Kings' day, when these manifestations took place, was especially dedicated to her, as well as in Austria, Tyrol and Bavaria, under the names Perchtag or Prechtag (day of Perch or Prech) (earlier, in Z"urich: Brechtentag), and in Swabia it was named Oberstag or...berst.

New converts to Christianity, trying to shed horror on heathenism, described the formerly honored goddesses as bad spirits, and even Frau Perchtha or Holle, the sweetest and most beneficial goddesses, were made to become aggressive and punishing characters.

Frau Berch or Perch, in Higher Austria and near Salzburg [has been named Salisbury in English], started to kidnap children that were not quiet during the year, and, in order to please them, the little girls had to keep their games well ordered, and servants had to weave their whole spindle before Christmas night, and to hide it under the roof. If she found a spindle with some flax still on it, she would shout angrily:

As much hairs,

As much bad years!

In the Voigtland, on her feast's eve, fish and rolls have to be eaten. If not, Perchtha will come and cut the body of the disobedient one, fill him with chaff and sew him again with a ploughshare and an iron chain.

Carinthia is not any less mistreated, where often even the adults she met were kidnapped. She haunts places, like Frick or Frau Gode, heading a wild army, and in the morning she brings back the unfortunate she took with her, as soulless corpses, holding strange foreign flowers between their fingers and toes.

This is why Frau Holle is burnt each year at Eisfeld in Turingia.

The Sunday of Epiphany, after the divine afternoon service, young and old go to the marketplace, playing music. There, they sing a consecrated song, and they shout, by way of joke: "Frau Holle will be burnt".

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Kuk  

Posted by Stella Clark

Kuk Image
Kuk (also spelled as Keku) is the deification of the primordial concept of darkness in Egyptian mythology. In the Ogdoad cosmogony, his name meant darkness. As a concept, Kuk was viewed as androgynous, his female form being known as Kauket (also spelled as Keket), which is simply the female form of the word Kuk. Like all 4 dualistic concepts in the Ogdoad, Kuk's male form was depicted as a frog, or as a frog-headed man, and the female form as a snake, or a snake-headed woman. As a symbol of darkness, Kuk also represented obscurity and the unknown, and thus chaos. Also, Kuk was seen as that which occurred before light, thus was known as the bringer-in of light.

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