The Story Of Brynhild  

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In Norse mythology, the Valkyries are depicted as young and beautiful, but very strong and fierce women ; they are the daughters of the god, Odin and are often called Odin's maidens. The Valkyrie, as the legend goes, were known to fly their horses over the fields of every battle to choose the souls of the heroic dead at their father's command, and any maiden who becomes a Valkyrie is to remain immortal for as long as they obey the Gods and remain virginal. The most famous of the Valkyries was Brynhild who, in the "Volsunga Saga" was their leader and Odin's favorite, but, we find that Brynhild is very strong-willed woman who has a mind of her own, and it isn't long before she disobeys her father by making her own decision as to who is to live and who is to die.

Odin then punishes her by putting her into a deep, magical sleep, and she is surrounded by a ring of fire... only a hero who is brave enough to tackle the flames will have the power to awaken her. Gudrun the dragon slayer tries, but he cannot break through the fire, so it is Sigurd, the ring bearer, who eventually rescues her by shapeshifting himself to look like Gudrun; the two fall madly in love, but Gudrun, who wants Brynhild for himself will have none of it. He comes up with a scheme to have Sigurd murdered while he sleeps in his bed. Brynhild then wills herself to die and builds a funeral pyre for Sigurd; she destroys herself on the pyre.

In myth, we often find women competing with men as well as with other women, and we find a variety of the myth of Brynhild in many different cultures. Brynhild demanded that a man must show himself to be stronger than she before she would agree to be his mate which Sigurd does both intellectually and physically. A strong woman does not hold herself back in the competition nor does she fix the game so that the man can win. In this way, Brynhild acted in a much more honest way than many of the women in today's world who think they have to hide their true strength in order to get a partner.

Strength is not something that is unfeminine. In fact, it is a part of a woman's being. Some of us are emotionally strong, others intellectually, and some physically, but to pretend that we are less than we are is to insult the Universe which has endowed us with these gifts. And in myth, haven you noticed that we always find the woman who shows her strength is the one who finally gets the man who matches it?...but, had Brynhild hidden that strength and pretended herself a weakling, she would have opened up an awareness of her partner's true weakness in comparison to hers. And that, ultimately, would have destroyed their bond.

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Jengu Cover
A jengu (plural miengu) is a water spirit and deity in the traditional beliefs of the Sawa ethnic groups of Cameroon, particularly the Duala, Bakweri, and related Sawa peoples. Among the Bakweri, the name is liengu (plural maengu). They are similar to West African Mami Wata figures, though belief in miengu likely predates most Mami Wata traditions. The miengu's appearance differs from people to people, but they are typically said to be beautiful, mermaid-like figures with long, wooly hair and gap-toothed smiles. They live in rivers and the sea and bring good fortune to those who worship them. They can also cure disease and act as intermediaries between worshippers and the world of spirits. For this reason, a jengu cult has long enjoyed popularity among the Duala peoples. Among the Bakweri, this cult is also an important part of a young girl's rite of passage into adulthood.

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Goddess Ipet  

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Goddess Ipet Image
IPET is an Egyptian Goddess of birth. Her name means "favoured place", and she was depicted as a combination of human, hippopotamus, lion, and crocodile--she had the body of a hippopotamus, the feet of a lion, human arms with lion paws, large human breasts and a pregnant belly, and the back and tail of a crocodile. This combination of attributes shows both her protective and nourishing aspects. One of her epithets is MISTRESS OF MAGICAL PROTECTION.

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Goddess Sedna  

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Goddess Sedna Image
SEDNA is the Inuit Goddess of the sea and sea creatures. She is the daughter of Anguta, the creator-god. As a maiden, Sedna was tricked into marrying a seabird who promised to take her away from her lonely life with her father. The bird's "palace" turned out to be a dirty nest and he treated her like a slave. When Sedna's father came to rescue her in his boat, the bird and his flock caused a great storm on the sea. To appease the birds, Anguta threw Sedna overboard. She tried to climb back into the boat, but her father chopped off her fingers. She tried again, and he cut off her hands. As Sedna descended to the bottom of the sea, where she rules over the underworld, her dismembered fingers and hands turned into fish, seals, whales, and other sea mammals. These creatures are all very important to the Inuit way of life, and hunters thank Sedna for their continued food supply.

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Pashupati Cover
Pashupati, "Lord of cattle", is an epithet of the Hindu deity Shiva. In Vedic times it was used as an epithet of Rudra. The Rigveda has the related pashupa "protector of cattle" as a name of Pushan. The Pashupatinath Temple is the most important Hindu shrine for all Hindus in Nepal and also for many Hindus in India and rest of the world. The name has also been applied to a figure, probably a deity, depicted as sitting among animals, on a seal discovered in the context of the Indus Valley Civilization.

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Goddess White Buffalo Woman  

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Goddess White Buffalo Woman Image
WHITE BUFFALO WOMAN is the Lakota Goddess of secret knowledge. Also called PTESAN-WI, which translates as "WHITE BUFFALO CALF WOMAN", she appeared one day to two hunters. She was dressed all in white and carried a small bundle on her back. One of the men was overcome with lust for her, but the second man recognized that this was no ordinary woman. The first man approached White Buffalo Woman, intending to embrace her, and she smiled at him. No sooner had he reached her than a white cloud of mist surrounded them. When the mist cleared away, nothing was left of the man but his bones. White Buffalo Woman explained to his companion that she only given him what he had desired, and in that moment he had lived a lifetime, died, and decayed.

The second hunter was sent back to his village to prepare the way for White Buffalo Woman. She told the people that she had come from Heaven in order to teach them the seven sacred rituals-the sweat lodge, the naming ceremony, the healing ceremony, the adoption ceremony, the marriage ceremony, the vision quest, and the sundance ceremony. From the bundle on her back, she gave the people all the tools they would need for the rituals, including the chununpa, the sacred pipe. She taught of the connection of all life, and the importance of honoring Mother Earth. White Buffalo Woman told the people that she would return to them when needed, to restore their spirituality and harmony with the land. As she walked away from the village, she looked back and sat down. When she stood again, she had become a black buffalo, signifying the direction west and the element earth. After walking a little further, she lay down again, this time rising as a yellow buffalo, signifying east and the sun. A third time, she walked, lay down, and arose as a red buffalo, signifying south and water. Finally, she rose as a white buffalo, signifying north and air. With one last look back at the people, she galloped off and disappeared.

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Perun Cover
Perun is the highest god of the pantheon and the god of thunder and lightning. His other attributes were the fire, mountains, the oak, iris, eagle, firmament (in Indo-European languages this was joined with the notion of the sky of stone), horses and carts, weapons and war. He was first associated with weapons made of stone and later with those of metal. Like Germanic Thor, Perun is described as a rugged man with a copper beard. He rides in a chariot pulled by a goat buck and carries a mighty axe, or sometimes a hammer. The axe is hurled at evil people and spirits and will always return to his hand.

Perun is a son of Svarog. The thunder-god of the ancient Slavs, a fructifier, purifier, and overseer of right and order. He is described as a rugged man with a copper beard. He rides in a chariot pulled by a he-goat and carries a mighty axe, or arrows, sometimes a hammer. This axe is hurled at evil people and spirits and will always return to his hand. His lighting bolts were believed to pass through the earth to a certain depth and return gradually to the surface in a specific period of time – usually 7 yr. 40 days. In Slavic mythology, the world was represented by a sacred… tree, usually an oak, whose branches and trunk represented the living world of heavens and mortals, whilst its roots represented the underworld, i.e. the realm of dead. Perun was a ruler of the living world, sky and earth, and was often symbolised by an eagle sitting on the top of the tallest branch of the tree, from which he kept watch over the entire world. Deep down in the roots of the tree was the place of his enemy, symbolised by a serpent or a dragon: this was Veles, watery god of the underworld, who continually provoked Perun by stealing his cattle, children or wife.

Perun pursued Veles around the earth, attacking him with his lightning bolts from the sky. Veles fled from him by transforming himself into various animals, or hiding behind trees, houses or people; wherever a lightning bolt struck, it was believed, this was because Veles hid from Perun under or behind that particular place. In the end, Perun managed to kill Veles, or to chase him back down into his watery underworld.The supreme god thus reestablished the order in the world which had been disrupted by his chaotic enemy. He then returned to the top of the World tree and proudly inform his opponent down in the roots! (”Well, there is your place, stay there!”). This line came from a Belarusian folk tale of great antiquity.

To the Slavs, the mythological symbolism of a supreme heavenly god who battles with his under worldly enemy through storms and thunder was extremely significant, and from Perun and Veles, this idea of cosmic battle was passed onto God and the Devil following Christianization. People, rocks and trees struck by lightening are considered to be sacred for the heavenly fire remains inside them. All big trees were sacred to Perun, but he especially loved the oak. There are records of oaks being fenced in as sacred to him. Sacrifices to him usually consisted of a rooster, but on special occasions, bear, bull or he-goat might be killed. The sacrificed animal was then communally eaten as they were seen to be imbued with the power of their patron God. Eating the god’s animal to absorb the god’s essence is similar to and predates the ritual of Holy Communion.

Perun’s arch enemy was the zaltys, a great serpent curled at the base of the world tree. Somehow, this also put him on Volos’ blacklist and worship of these two gods had to be kept separate. Temples to Perun tended to be octagonal and on high ground. An idol of him set outside the castle of Vladmir was said to have a silver head and gold moustache – in some accounts, gold mouth. When Vladmir tore down the idol, it was tied to a horse’s tail and dragged to the Dnieper. Amid much weeping it was then tossed in as men with poles made sure that he was not washed ashore or pulled out. It eventually floated down river and was blown onto a sandbank still known as Perun’s bank. Perun’s holy day is Thursday, his feast day is the 20th of July. His actions are perceived by the senses: seen in the thunderbolt, heard in the rattle of stones or the bellow of the bull or the bleat of the he-goat (thunder), and felt in the touch of an ax blade.

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Kaus Cover
Kaus was the national god of the Edomites. He was also known as Qaush, Kaush, Qaus, Qos and Kos. He was probably a mountain god and may be connected with the Nabataean deity Dusharres. The name of the deity was used as the theophoric element in the names of the Edomite kings Kaus-gabri and Kaus-malaka.

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By The Earth That Is Her Body  

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By The Earth That Is Her Body Cover
Earth holds and supports us like the arms of the great Goddess. It's the ground we stand on. Trees take root in it. Meadows rise from it. Crystals grow within it. It grows our grain and gives us our green herbs. No other element captures the Mystery of the Mother as well as the element that composes Her body.

All the elements, earth, air, fire and water, have correspondences: magickal tools and qualities that are associated with them, which can vary from tradition to tradition. (Women's traditions tend to be pretty flexible, so don't think of these as graven in stone.) The correspondences are part of the symbolic richness of women's rituals. What we know about Goddess can't be expressed in words, and rituals rife with symbolism lead us to that inexpressible knowledge better than any speech could ever do. When we invoke the qualities of the elements, we surround ourselves with the images of Mystery.

The element of Earth corresponds to the direction North. Its season is winter, and with winter comes quiet, thoughtfulness, and awareness without distraction.
Moving waters freeze. The riot of summer growth is dormant. With quiet comes the ability to keep silent, to hold secrets, to listen, and to speak mindfully and purposefully. Its magickal tool is the pentacle, the five-pointed star inscribed in the circle, an ancient symbol of magick. Earth corresponds to midnight, the witching hour, a time when truth is laid bare. Earth's corresponding colors are black, like night, and the colors of what it supports, green and brown. It is also the element of metals, ores, crystals and minerals. For this reason, the element of Earth corresponds to wealth and material comfort, from gold and jewels to career and home. Earth and its correspondences are heavily used in spellwork because material lack is a problem for many women, maybe most of us. And, Earth is the final return of energy when we ground. Earth is something we can readily touch and feel and smell. It's so prevalent that it only takes a little opening up to become aware of the Mystery that continually surrounds us.

Earth is both a comfort and a source of disquiet, even fear. You can break open a newly baked loaf and smell the Earth in its intoxicating scent. You can also seek the unseen and find yourself in the dark. The Dark Goddess is symbolized by Earth. The Old One knows and loves the Light. She has been a Maiden and a Mother, and She knows what passion is. But She is also the Destroyer, not just cleaning up after the party's over, but a necessary part of the Wheel of Life. In the end, the Dark Goddess will cradle us when the Crone beckons us from across the Veil, kind and loving, but also inexorable.

Dark and Light are parts of the same weave. The element of Earth can teach us to embrace them both.

- Silverskye

Further reading (free e-books):

Howard Phillips Lovecraft - The Other Gods
Aleister Crowley - Book Of The Heart Girt With The Serpent

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Goddess Ishtar And God Tammuz  

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Goddess Ishtar And God Tammuz Cover
Ishtar has a prominent role in the Epic of Gilgamesh. After Gilgamesh and his friend Enkidu have killed the demon Humbaba, Ishtar appears to Gilgamesh and asks him to be her husband. Gilgamesh rejects Ishtar’s offer, citing her mistreatment of her former lovers and wondering why he would be any different. In fury, Ishtar asks her father Anu, God of Heaven, to unleash the Bull of Heaven so that it could attack Gilgamesh and avenge her. Anu hesitates, but when Ishtar threatens to raise all the dead from the underworld, he gives in. The Bull is set loose, and after a ferocious battle, Gilgamesh and Enkidu manage to slay it. Ishtar stands on the walls of the city and wails, which prompts Enkidu to throw the bull’s leg at her, threatening to do the same to her if she comes any closer. This is too much for the Gods, who were already upset with Gilgamesh and Enkidu for killing Humbaba. They decide that Enkidu must die, and Gilgamesh learns what it means to reject Ishtar’s advances.

Enkidu’s hostility towards Ishtar has another root. Earlier in the Epic, Enkidu, who is originally a wild man, is “civilized” by a temple prostitute. These prostitutes, called ishtaritu, inhabited the temples of Ishtar, offering themselves to any male worshipper who paid the required contribution. In fact, every Babylonian woman was expected to go to a temple and perform the rite with a stranger at least once in her life. Like Inanna, Ishtar was known as the Goddess of prostitutes, and her alternate names of Har and Hora gave rise to the terms “harlot” and “whore”.

The Goddess Ishtar, in her youth, loved Tammuz, God of the harvest. He returned her love, but he was killed by a boar. Ishtar was devastated by his heath.

When Tammuz died, all vegetation died. The animals would no longer mate, and humans were no longer active sexually, and the Earth, herself, was dying. Ishtar knew that Tammuz was in the Underworld which was ruled by her sister Erishkigal. To reach Erishkigal, Ishtar had to pass the seven gates of the Underworld and at each gate surrender some of her jewelry or a garment until finally she stood before her sister naked, unadorned and completely vulnerable.

Ishtar laments: "Tammuz is dead!"

Ishtar looks up at Sin, the Moon God and asks: "Sin, my father, what shall we do? Without my love Tammuz, the Earth's womb is sterile. The fields well bear no crops and my creatures will bear no young. Help me father!"

Sin replies: What can I do, sister? I am the Moon who lights up the night. I can bring rest, but not fruitfulness; visions, but not deeds; understanding, but not action. Such things belong to Earth. What can I do?"

Ishtar turns to Shamash, and pleads: "Shamash, my brother, what shall I do?"

Shamash replies: "What can I do sister? I am the sun who lights up the day, shining upon your Earth to bring it heat. I can call forth your crops once they are sown...and warm your young once they are born; but I cannot sow the grain, or fertilize the womb. Such things belong to Earth. What can I do?"

Ishtar appeals finally to Ea: "Ea, my brother, help me! You are wisdom, you are magic, you are the air which my creatures breathe. Help me!"

Ea does not reply for a moment; then he stands up, as Sin and Shamash also do when he commands them. "Be upstanding, my brothers. Despair and resignation will not help our sister, nor bring Tammuz to life. What is wisdom and what is magic? Wisdom is knowledge of the laws of the universe, which are greater than each of us alone. And magic is the courage to call upon them. So let us call! It is a low of being, that death follows life, and rebirth follows death. Tammuz may seem to die, but his rebirth must follow as the great wheel turns. We call upon the laws of being – we clal upon the wheel of rebirth!"

Sin and Shamash also threw up their arms. Ishtar takes Tammuz's hand and all three take up the cry: "We call upon the wheel of rebirth!"

Tammuz opens his eyes and sits up. Ishtar stands and pull him to his feet, saying: "Great Tammuz is reborn, the fruits of the Earth are ours once more. Bring them forth, let us enjoy them!"

Further reading (free e-books):

Aleister Crowley - The Star And The Garter
Aleister Crowley - One Star In Sight
Francesca De Grandis - Goddess Initiation

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Turkish Fire God  

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Turkish Fire God Cover
Fire was a grandson of Tengri and the Sun. His brother was Lightning. The Turks associated Fire with birth, growth, development, and life in general. N. Katanov states, "In the perception of the Tatars, the spirit of Fire grows and warms beings. As soon as the spirit of Fire departs from the being, it dies. The body unites with the land, and the soul joins the multitudes of spirits, soaring above the Earth." A red cow, red bull, or rooster represented Fire. In other representations, Fire was Ut-Ana (Mother Fire). Ut-Ana was believed to be the mother of mankind. When Fire whistled in the hearth, they bowed to the flame and invocated: "Fire, you are our Mother with 30 teeth, you are our mother-in-law with 40 teeth." Fire was deemed to be like the Sun (Heavenly Fire) and the hearth in the centre of a yurt was purposely made round. Warmth, emanated from both Sun and Fire, as did light and colour. Sun and Fire were linked to Woman, who bore and guarded the descendants. The Hearth was protected and kept clean, a careless attitude could result in the Fire God becoming angry and leaving the yurt. Fire was associated with the clan, but each family also maintained a family Fire, which was united with that of other families. However, borrowing Fire from neighbours was considered impious.

Desecration of Fire was forbidden. This included throwing rubbish, leftovers or foul smelling substances onto it; stoking coals with a sharp implement; stepping over it or stepping on ashes. Ashes from the hearth were taken to a secluded place, where neither people, nor animals would go. To spit on a flame meant that one’s lips would become blistered. It was prohibited to deviate from the daily ritual of tending the Fire and offering it food and beverages. If these rules were violated, the Fire would punish the inhabitants by burning possessions or the dwelling itself, or depriving the inhabitants of the Fire God's protection against malicious, illness-causing spirits. A burnt object was seen as a terrible sign of Fire’s anger and a special prayer with sacrifices had to be made. If it occurred whilst on a hunt, the hunters abandoned their forays. When the burning wood in the hearth crackled or whistled, it meant that Ut-Ana was happy and the master of the house expected good news and visitors.

Once a year family prayers to Ut-Ana were organised. Their purpose was to ask for the family’s health and fortune. A Kam conducted the household prayer to Ut-Ana. A white ram with a black face was often given as a sacrifice. Before the sacrifice, simmering milk was poured upon the ram and it was decorated with coloured ribbons, before being released back into the herd. In this way it was devoted to Ut-Ana, before being slaughtered. The right front part of the carcass and heart were burnt and the remaining parts given to the Kam. A required component of all the Kam’s ceremonies was birch, which symbolised the link between the upper and lower worlds. Birch branches (sis) decorated with chalama (ribbons of blue, red and white) were placed on the floor around the hearth. After a sacrifice to the Fire God, the Kam threw pieces of fatty meat into the flames, which would then intensify. In invocations to Ut-Ana, the Kam usually said: “You, Fire, Mother of ours. You have 40 teeth. You are covered with red silk, and have a white silk bed. I did not step on white ashes. Small children and dogs did not touch you. I sacrificed the white ram, I gave the white lamb, I bow to you, Fire, grant us an easier life.”8 The sacrificial food for deities and spirits was prepared on flames. People ate the meat, and the Deities and Spirits fed on the smell of the roasted meat.

Fire had a cleansing quality. A desecrated object was held above the flames for cleansing. Ambassadors visiting a Khagan were always led between two fires. Leaving the winter quarters, the Horde also passed fires. Before a man give a public oath he had to be purified by flames. For this purpose fires were set in two places and he had to pass between them.

“Fire was a patron of dwellings and a home’s sanctuary. A bride on arriving at her husband’s household had to bow to the Fire on entering the dwelling, so that her family would be as happy as the ancestors. Women led the bride entering a new family to the yurt of her father-in-law. When inside, she usually knelt… She then poured fat onto the flames and bowed a few times, invoking, ‘Mother-Fire and Mother-Fat, award me with your favor!...’”9 The Kam, stretched his hands over the flames, calling: "Lady Hearth Ut-Ana! By your will this flame is born. So let this flame protect the dwelling against malicious spirits and act as a barrier against human treachery. May the goodness warm without burning and may evil be eliminated. Let Fire last a thousands years! Bless this hearth, Ut-Ana!" After that, the Kam declared the bride to be a wife and a mistress of the hearth and the groom a husband and master of the yurt.

Fire was applied for the treatment of various diseases. If a child or adult had facial lesions, sparks were made over them using flint. The Kam, addressed the lesions, "Why does not a single branch move? Why do you wander here and there? May all the crusts together with the fiery sparks fall from this face... Do not build your yurt here any more… Do not return." With the help of Fire, the Kam treated a child from 'milk disease' (sic), a disease of the oral mucous membrane. The treatment consisted of the Kam laying the child on its back and burning a piece of a birch bark on its chest, leaving a small mark. The same procedure was conducted for the treatment of excessive salivation. The diseases which could be cured by flames included rheumatism, which in the opinion of the ancient Turks, was caused by carelessly walking into old encampments. The Mongols believed the same, as they had a legend that the Khonkirat people suffered leg-pains because they descended from the Yergena-Kun valley and had trampled on the land of other peoples.10 It was believed that ashes also had medicinal properties. So, a bleeding wound was covered with hot ashes, which accelerated healing. Hot ashes smeared across the belly with one’s right hand were a cure for abdominal pain.

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Nabu Cover
Nabu (in Biblical Hebrew Nebo ) is the Babylonian god of wisdom and writing, worshipped by Babylonians as the son of Marduk and his consort, Sarpanitum, and as the grandson of Ea. Nabu's consort was Tashmetum. Originally, Nabu was a West Semitic deity introduced by the Amorites into Mesopotamia, probably at the same time as Marduk. While Marduk became Babylon's main deity, Nabu resided in nearby Borsippa in his temple E-zida. He was first called the "scribe and minister of Marduk", later assimilated as Marduk's beloved son from Sarpanitum. During the Babylonian New Year Festival, the cult statue of Nabu was transported from Borsippa to Babylon in order to commune with his father Marduk. Nabu is accorded the office of patron of the scribes, taking over from the Sumerian goddess Nisaba. His symbols are the clay writing tablet with the writing stylus. He wears a horned cap, and stands with hands clasped, in the ancient gesture of priesthood. He rides on a winged dragon (mushussu, also known as Sirrush) that is initially Marduk's.

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Ohoyamatsumi Cover
Ohoyamatsumi ( Oyamatsumi-no-Mikoto; also Ohoyama) is in Japanese mythology an elder brother of Amaterasu, and an important god who rules mountain, sea, and war. He is also the father of Konohanasakuya-hime, the kami of Mount Fuji. His most important shrine, Ohoyamazumi Shrine, is located in the island Ohomishima.

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Nana Buluku  

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Nana Buluku Cover
Nana Buluku (or Nanan-bouclou) is the Supreme Deity of the Fon from Dahomey. Nana Buluku is an androgynous deity. Like the Judeo-Christian god, Nana Buluku created the Universe and all that exists in it. Twins were born to Nana Buluku: the moon god Mawu and the sun god Lisa. Nana Buluku was also incorporated into the Yor`ub'a religion as Yemaja, the female thought of the male creator Ashe and the effective cause of all further creation.

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Lord Balarama  

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Lord Balarama Cover
Lord Vishnu incarnated as Lord Balarama to save his devotees,and the most popular God for strength. Lord Balarama has unlimited strength and unlimited beautiness, and much more and more.

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Bathala Cover
Bathalang Maykapal, or Bathala, was the Supreme God of the ancient Tagalog and King of the Diwatas. Derived from the Javanese Batara Guru, an alternate name for the Hindu god Shiva, the concept of Bathala, as with many beliefs in pre-Hispanic Philippines, owe a huge debt to the Hinduism of the Srivijayan Javanese. All of these beliefs were soon changed after the Spaniards set foot on the islands. Spanish missionaries used Bathala as a way for them to convert the Tagalogs into Christianity by associating him with the Christian God. They also did this to the other deities by replacing them with saints. Since then, the name "Bathala" was used to refer to the Christian God and is still used by Filipinos today, and God is even addressed as "Poong (Panginoon, meaning "Lord") Maykapal". Bathala has counterparts in other parts of the Philippines. In Northern Luzon, Kabunian and Lumawig; in Southern Luzon, Gugurang and Mangindusa; and in the Visayas, Abba, Kan-Laon, and Kaptan.

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Kumakatok Cover
The Kumakatok (door knockers) are a group of three robed figures that knock on doors in the middle of the night. These three mysterious hooded figures looked like humans. One resembles a young female while the other two look like old people. A visit from the kumakatok is usually an omen of death as either the eldest or the ill member of the house they knocked upon dies. These visits are also more frequent after a disease outbreak. Residences of Luzon and Visayas painted white crosses on their doors to ward off the kumakatok. This trend caused the trio to switch from residences to government buildings, hospitals, and even churches. The kumakatok vanished or lessened their visits after World War II. A probable explanation is that many buildings were destroyed at that time, denying the kumatakok of doors to knock upon. There were no accounts of anyone answering the three.

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Ekeko Cover
The Ekeko is the Tiwanakan god of abundance and prosperity in the mythology and folklore of the people from the Andean Altiplano. The current representation corresponds to a reinterpretation made by the artisan Isidro Choquehuanca as a gift for an employee of the Governor and Commanding Officer of the city of La Paz, Bolivia, Sebasti'an Segurola.

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Xiuhtecuhtli Cover
In Aztec mythology, Xiuhtecuhtli (also Huehueteotl, "old god") was the personification of life after death, warmth in cold (fire), light in darkness and food during famine. He was usually depicted with a red or yellow face and a censer on his head. His wife was Chalchiuhtlicue.At the end of the Aztec century (52 years), the gods were thought to be able to end their covenant with humanity. Feasts were held in honor of Xiuhtecuhtli to keep his favors, and human sacrifices were burned after removing their heart.

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Sun God Charge  

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Sun God Charge Cover
I am the Sun God
At the height of my power
The noon of my majesty
No shadow I cast
My light at full zenith
Darkness is overcome
Rejoice in the light

Born of the dark was I
In the cold midnight
Sun of that hunting God
Deep in the greenwood
I come forth and put to flight the darkness
Lord of Life, Lord of Light
Golden One and King of Glory
Rejoice in my orb
Now in its splendour
My warmth has restored the earth to its life
About me the planets revolve.

Further reading (free e-books):

Anton Josef Kirchweger - The Golden Chain Of Homer
Rodolfo Amadeo Lanciani - Pagan And Christian Rome
Aleister Crowley - The Fun Of The Fair

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Pancika Cover
Pa~ncika was the consort of the Buddhist goddess of children, Hariti. He is himself a Buddhist god, and is said to have fathered 500 children. He was the commander-in-chief of the Yaka army of Vai'sravaa (Bishamonten), and had another 27 Yaka generals under his orders. Pa~ncika was often represented holding a lance and a bag of jewels (or money), together with Hariti, in the Greco-Buddhist art of Gandhara, where they illustrated marital love following the intervention of the Buddha. The two figures "were very popular in Gandhara in the latter part of the second century, and their statues are many. " When depicted holding a spear, he also signals his role as the chief of the Yakas. The Yakas are commanded by 28 generals, of whom the chief is Pa~ncika - according to the Mahavamsa, he was the father of the 500 sons of Hariti [Kishimojin Kishimojin]. Worshipped very early in India (some of his representations are found in Gandhara and in northern India) as well as in Java, this general of the Yakas was soon merged with Vai'sravaa.

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Greek Graces  

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Greek Graces Cover
In Greek mythology, the Charites were the graces. Ordinarily they were three: Aglaea, the youngest, Euphrosyne and Thalia (according to the Spartans, Cleta was the third), but others are sometimes mentioned, including Auxo, Charis, Hegemone, Phaenna, and Pasithea (see Pausanius below).

They were the daughters of Zeus and Eurynome, usually, though also said to be daughters of Dionysus and Aphrodite or of Helios and the naiad Aegle. Homer claimed they were part of the retinue of Aphrodite. Their Roman equivalent were the Gratiae (Graces).

The Charites were the goddesses of charm, beauty, nature, human creativity and fertility. They were great lovers of beauty and gave humans talents in the arts, closely associated with the Muses. The Charites were associated with the underworld and the Eleusinian Mysteries.The river Cephissus near Delphi was sacred to them.

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Yahweh Cover
Yahweh (y"a'we) is the proper name in the Old Testament for the God of Israel and Judah whom they consider "the One True God. " It is a modern reconstruction of YHWH, the ancient Hebrew ineffable, unutterable name for God, not to be spoken because of its sacredness. Other forms are Jah, Jahve, Jahveh, Jahweh, Jehovah, Yahve, Yahveh, and Yahwe. Jehovah is its English equivalent. The name is attested to both in the archaeological record and in the Hebrew Bible, where it is written as the four Hebrew consonants, YHWH; the form Yahweh is a modern scholarly convention. The name "Yahweh" appears nearly 7,000 times in the Old Testament and also many times in the New Testament where it is usually translated L when it directly quotes or paraphrases passages from the Old Testament containing God's name. Although the name "Yahweh" does not appear in the text of most popular English Bible translations on the market today, Christians worship the same God as Father of their Lord Jesus Christ.

The most likely meaning of the name may be "He Brings Into Existence Whatever Exists," but there are many theories and none is regarded as conclusive. The Jews ceased to use the name Yahweh after the Exile (6th century BC), and most especially from the 3rd century BC on. when they came to regard God's name as too holy to be spoken. In the Hebrew Bible Yahweh is the one true God who delivered Israel from Egypt and entered into a covenant with his chosen people: "Then God spoke all these words. He said, 'I am Yahweh your God who brought you out of Egypt, where you lived as slaves. You shall have no other gods to rival me. '" Yahweh revealed himself to Israel as a God who would not permit his people to make idols or follow gods of other nations or worship gods known by other names, "I am Yahweh, that is My name; I will not give My glory to another, or My praise to idols. "

Yahweh demanded the role of the one true God in the hearts and minds of Israel, "Hear, Israel: Yahweh is our God; Yahweh is one: and you shall love Yahweh your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might. " To declare their belief that Israel's God was universal sovereign over all others as well as Israel, the more common noun Elohim, meaning "god," tended to replace Yahweh. Modern biblical scholars have used source criticism to interpret different character attributes of Yahweh. The documentary hypothesis employs source criticism to interpret different character attributes as originating in four distinct source documents of the Torah. For example, anthropomorphic descriptions, visits from Yahweh and use of the personal name prior to Exodus 3 are attributed to the Jahwist source. Use of the generic title, Elohim, and descriptions of Yahweh of a more impersonal nature (for example, speaking through dreams and angels rather than personal appearances) are attributed to the Elohist source. Descriptions of Yahweh as particularly concerned with whether Judah's kings were good or bad and with centralized temple worship are attributed to the Deuteronomist source. Passages that portray Yahweh as acting through the Aaronid priesthood and temple-based sacrificial system are described as originating with the Priestly source. Historians of the ancient near east describe worship of Yahweh as originating in pre-Israelite peoples of the Levant rather than in a divine revelation to Moses.

Theophoric names, names of local gods similar to Yahweh, and archaeological evidence are used along with the Biblical source texts to describe pre-Israel origins of Yahweh worship, the relationship of Yahweh with local gods, and the manner in which Yahweh worship evolved into Jewish monotheism. In contrast, scholars who employ methods allowing for supernaturalism and divine inspiration continue to interpret the Biblical portrayal of Yahweh in a manner consistent with faith-based views. Worship of Yahweh alone is a central idea of historical Judaism. Much of Christianity views Jesus as the human incarnation of Yahweh. The importance of the divine name and the character of the "one true God" revealed as Yahweh are often contrasted with the significantly different character of rival deities known by different names in the traditional polytheistic religions. Some scholars, including William G. Dever, have asserted that the Asherah was worshipped as a consort of Yahweh, until the 6th century BCE, when strict monolatry of Yahweh became prevalent in the wake of the destruction of the temple. However, the consort hypothesis has been subject to debate with numerous scholars publishing disagreement. Jews ceased to use the name Yahweh in the intertestamental period, replacing it with the common noun Elohim, "god", to demonstrate the universal sovereignty of Israel's God over all others. At the same time, the divine name was increasingly regarded as too sacred to be uttered, and was replaced in spoken ritual by the word Adonai ("My Lord"), or with haShem ("the Name") in everyday speech.

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Ometecuhlti Or Omecihuatl  

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Ometecuhlti Or Omecihuatl Cover
Ometeotl is the name of the dual god Ometecutli/Omecihuatl in Aztec mythology. The suffix -teotl originally was translated as god, but most translators now prefer lord since the concept is not equivalent to the European concept of God. Some people translate teotl as energy, but this is not generally accepted. The literal translation of the name is "Lord Two", Leon Portilla interprets this as "Lord of the Duality".

The origin of this god is from Toltec origin, and possibly could be traced to Teotihuacan.

In the Nahua/Aztec tradition, Ometeolt/Omecihualt is a dual god, male and female, who was the creator of Cemanahuatl. Ometeotl's male aspect is Ometecutli, his/her female aspect is Omecihuatl.

S/he dwelled in and ruled over Omeyocan ("Two Place"), home of the gods.There were no temples dedicated to this god, but Ometeotl is referred to in most of the Aztec poetry.

Ometeotl was also referred by other names: Tloque Nahuaque, "Owner of the Near and Far"; Moyocoyatzin, "The Inventor of Himself"; Ipalnemohua, "The Giver of Life".Ometecuhtli ("two-lord"; also Ometeoltloque, Ometecutli, Tloque Nahuaque, Citlatonac), the male aspect, was a deity associated with fire, a creator deity and one of the highest gods in the pantheon, though he had no cult and was not actively worshipped.

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Cocijo Cover
Cocijo (occasionally spelt Cociyo) is a deity of the pre-Columbian Zapotec civilization of southern Mexico, with attributes characteristic of similar Mesoamerican deities associated with rain, thunder and lightning, such as Tlaloc of central Mexico, and Chaac (or Chaak) of the Maya civilization. In Zapotec art Cocijo is represented with a zoomorphic face with a wide, blunt snout and a long forked serpentine tongue. Cocijo often bears the Zapotec glyph C in his headdress. A similar glyph is used in Mixtec codices as the day sign Water and it is likely that its meaning in Zapotec is identical, therefore being the appropriate glyph for the rain and storm god. In the Zapotec language, the word cocijo means "lightning", as well as referring to the deity. Cocijo was the most important deity among the pre-Columbian Zapotecs. He is commonly represented on ceramics from the Zapotec area, from the Middle Preclassic right through to the Terminal Classic. Cocijo was said to be the great lightning god and creator of the world. In Zapotec myth, he made the sun, moon, stars, seasons, land, mountains, rivers, plants and animals, and day and night by exhaling and creating everything from his breath.

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Adad Cover
This article is about the Sumerian god Adad also known as Ishkur. For the electronic music guide go to Ishkur's Guide to Electronic Music Adad in Akkadian and Ishkur in Sumerian and Hadad in Aramaic, are the names of the storm-god in the Babylonian-Assyrian pantheon, both usually written by the logogram IM. The Akkadian god Adad is cognate in name and functions with northwest Semitic god Hadad. In Akkadian Adad is also known as Ramman ("Thunderer") cognate with Aramaic Rimmon which was a byname of the Aramaic Hadad. Ramman was formerly incorrectly taken by many scholars to be an independent Babylonian god later identified with the Amorite god Hadad. The Sumerian Ishkur appears in the list of gods found at Fara but was of far less importance than the Akkadian Adad later became, probably partly because storms and rain are scarce in southern Babylonia and agriculture there depends on irrigation instead. Also, the gods Enlil and Ninurta also had storm god features which decreased Ishkur's distinctiveness. He sometimes appears as the assistant or companion of one or the other of the two. When Enki distributed the destinies, he made Ishkur inspector of the cosmos. In one litany Ishkur is proclaimed again and again as "great radiant bull, your name is heaven" and also called son of An, lord of Karkara; twin-brother of Enki, lord of abundance, lord who rides the storm, lion of heaven. In other texts Adad/Ishkur is sometimes son of the moon god Nanna/Sin by Ningal and brother of Utu/Shamash and Inana/Ishtar. He is also occasionally son of Enlil. Adad/Ishkur's consort (both in early Sumerian and later Assyrian texts) was Shala, a goddess of grain, who is also sometimes associated with the god Dagan. She was also called Gubarra in the earliest texts. The fire god Gibil (named Gerra in Akkadian) is sometimes the son of Ishkur and Shala. Adad/Ishkur's special animal is the bull. He is naturally identified with the Anatolian storm-god Teshub. Occasionally Adad/Ishkur is identified with the god Amurru, the god of the Amorites. The Babylonian center of Adad/Ishkur's cult was Karkara in the south, his chief temple being E. Karkara; his spouse Shala his was worshipped in a temple named E. Durku. But among the Assyrians his cult was especially developed along with his warrior aspect. From the reign of Tiglath-Pileser I, Adad had a double sanctuary in Assur which he shared with Anu. Anu is often associated with Adad in invocations. The name Adad and various alternate forms and bynames (Dadu, Bir, Dadda) are often found in the names of the Assyrian kings. Adad/Ishkur presents two aspects in the hymns, incantations, and votive inscriptions. On the one hand he is the god who, through bringing on the rain in due season, causes the land to become fertile, and, on the other hand, the storms that he sends out bring havoc and destruction. He is pictured on monuments and cylinder seals (sometimes with a horned helmet) with the lightning and the thunderbolt (sometimes in the form of a spear), and in the hymns the sombre aspects of the god on the whole predominate. His association with the sun-god, Shamash, due to the natural combination of the two deities who alternate in the control of nature, leads to imbuing him with some of the traits belonging to a solar deity. Shamash and Adad became in combination the gods of oracles and of divination in general. Whether the will of the gods is determined through the inspection of the liver of the sacrificial animal, through observing the action of oil bubbles in a basin of water or through the observation of the movements of the heavenly bodies, it is Shamash and Adad who, in the ritual connected with divination, are invariably invoked. Similarly in the annals and votive inscriptions of the kings, when oracles are referred to, Shamash and Adad are always named as the gods addressed, and their ordinary designation in such instances is bele biri ("lords of divination").

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