God and the Goddess
Long before Christianity came along,
long before people were called "pagans" for dancing around a maypole, there was an ancient religion. Not just in Ireland (although
most of modern-day Wicca is Celtic-based), but also in Egypt, Greece, Babylonia, everywhere. Unfortunately for the indiginous
peoples of those lands, their gods they worshipped were usually made to be "evil" when a new conquering nation came along
with a new religion. The Old Ways were condemned and the people were made to choose: accept the new religion, or die. And
so, this cycle repeated itself through time, when Rome took the Greeks' gods for themselves, when Babylonia was conquered
and the earth-mother goddess Tiamat was changed into the evil dragon, when the Christians came to the Celts. Christianity,
more so than any other religion, said worship of the Goddess was "pagan", "evil", or even "devil-worsip". So, they removed
the Goddess from their religion - if you notice, Christians worship God (like us), Jesus Christ (an aspect of the God - it
is exactly the same story as the Egyptian story of Osiris and his son Horus), but there is no female energy in their worship.
The closest would be the Catholic reverence of the Virgin Mary, but Wiccans believe that the true "higher power" has female
energy as well; hence, our belief and worship of the Goddess. This is history - we are not saying that we hate these people
and their religions, for all religions are one; we are merely stating the facts of what happened long ago. It is unfortunate
that this occurred, but the good news is that Wicca is making a "comeback", if you will. While many of us are still unnecessarily
feared, worship of the God and the Goddess is slowly coming back.
The God is known as many names in
Wicca. He is the ruler of the Sun, and is a Triple-God in this aspect. The sun rising (rebirth), the noon sun (the fertility
aspect), and the setting sun (death). Please note that death is not a negative idea to Wiccans; we believe in reincarnation
and death is merely another stage of life to us that we all must accept. The Death God is most popular during the Celtic-Wiccan
Ritual Holiday of Samhein (October 31st) when we honor the dead. This triple-version of the God is not as widely known or
used as the triple-version of the Goddess, and He is also known by other names or aspects. As the Fertility God, He rules
over sexuality of humans; as the Horned God or Stag King, He rules over hunting; as the God of the Earth, He rules over crops,
land, and animals.
The Goddess' most widely used "version",
if you will, is that of the Triple-Goddess. She is the ruler of the Moon, and is invoked as the Triple-Goddess most often
because of this. In this aspect, Her trinity is: the Waxing Moon or New Moon (the Maid, or freshness), the Full Moon (the
Mother, or sexuality), and the Waning Moon (the Crone, or wisdom). This, however, is not Her only aspect. She is also invoked
as the Goddess of healing, childbirth, and love. Her consort, of course, is the God (and vice-versa); sometimes, They are
known as the Lord and the Lady. Please note, this is *our* way of worshipping Them, and is not the only way. Many Wiccans
choose not to worship the God as we do - we, however, feel it is necessary to us to include both the male and female energies.
|In the beginning was the Mother.
As far back as 30,000 years ago, the people of the earth worshipped
a female deity. In cultures around the world, the Goddess has been revered in myriad forms, in temple and grove, cathedral
and cave. She has been celebrated and venerated through ritual, myth, and art. These pages serve as introduction to some of
the 10,000 names of the Goddess, and offer links to other web pages and resources where you can find more information about
Goddess spirituality and mythology.
The path of Goddess is not defined or laid down in dogma. It is
a living, daily connection with sacredness. There is literally no end to the ways in which you can find and honor Goddess.
The Goddess is Gaia, the earth Ix Chel, the moon Arianrhod, the stars. She is Oya, who brings the storms, and she is Mary,
who calms them. She is Nut, who births creation, and Kali, who destroys it. She is maiden, mother, queen and crone. She is
lover and spinster, warrior and sibyl, nurturer and judge.
The Goddess does not easily fit into categories. For example,
defining Demeter as simply a nature goddess or Artemis as a moon goddess is to diminish Her influence and importance in other
realms. These categories are but convenient gathering places, showing the common threads that weave into the larger pattern.
Know that each aspect of the Goddess is far more complex, far richer, than can be presented in this small space. Let this
be a beginning of your exploration of Her.
Once She has called your name,
you are Hers forever.
The following is our belief concerning deities.
We honor the God and the Goddess, but also their many aspects. These "aspects" are the deities that most people read about
and call "myths". They are not myths, but truth. The God is separate from the Goddess, yet They are one. Their aspects, or
deities, are separate - yet one as well. For example, Rhiannon's deity, guide, and mentor is Morgan le Fey, who represents the Crone aspect of the Triple-Goddess. She is separate
from the Goddess, yet part of Her as well. This is a hard concept to comprehend for most, and usually takes much meditation
to come to terms with this idea.