Saturday, February 14, 2009

Goddess of the Week



Hathor is an ancient Egyptian Goddess Who is very old and very complex, being a Goddess of women, the sky, cows, motherhood, celebration, music, and the Afterlife. She may be the Cow-Goddess depicted on the Palette of Narmer (about 3100 BCE), and in Predynastic times (around 5500-3100 BCE) there was a shrine dedicated to Her as "She of the Pillar" at Her cult-center at Dendera, which is still the site of a famous Ptolemaic temple to Her. She is very, very, old.

She is intimately associated with the falcon-God Horus, Who was linked with the Sun, and was believed to be His mother and/or His wife, depending on the source. Her name reflects this ancient relationship: it means "House of Horus," and can be taken to refer to Her either as the mother of Horus (Whom She "housed" in Her womb), or to the sky, which "houses" the hawk/sun.

She could sometimes be represented simply as a cow; more often, though, She was shown as a woman with cow's ears and distinctive curled hair. On Her head is set the sun disk between two long cow's horns, the proportions of which look to me an awful lot like a raised pair of woman's arms embracing the sun.

Hathor's realm includes both this life and the next; She is both a Goddess of fertility and childbirth Who welcomes new life into this world, as well as the one Who protects the newly deceased and welcomes her or him into the Afterlife.

She is a Goddess of celebration, love, healing, music and dance, and Her festivals were famous for their merriment. Though generally very benevolent and helpful, She did have a darker side: sometimes Sekhmet's story of vengeance was attributed to Her.

Overall, though, Hathor is a very positive, very strong, and very ancient Goddess.

I am inclined, therefore, to regard this card's appearance this week as A Good Sign. It seems we are in for some celebration, love, and rejuvenation; and not just love within a couple, as today's execrable pink-and-red holiday insists is the only kind worth having, but love for one's own self. Especially, given that this is Hathor we're talking about, our love for ourselves as women. So many voices surround us and tell us to hate, belittle, and devalue ourselves; and untangling all that can be a lifetime's work. I think She is calling us to remember Who we are.

What does She say?

Love, laugh, celebrate; all is well, all are beloved of Me. I am golden, untarnished, always glowing, always beautiful, as is this earth and you; look in My eyes and see My radiant smile. I love you all. You are all My daughters. My golden ones, My daughters, I am strength and I am here. Take my hand. Wherever you are, wherever you are going, I welcome you. I am here.


To read more about Her, go here.

1 comment:

Pietra said...

It is great to see Hathor's face on posting for the week. I feel very energetic and welcoming to the new week!