Happy New Year

Happy secular New Year!
We gaze bravely into the future, remembering
that Her love will sustain and unite us all.
("Mirror Gazing" by Emily Balivet, copyright reserved)

In Her Name ~ Temple of Learning



Full Moon Blessings

Blessings of the Long Night's Moon in Gemini.
May Her healing rays bring peace and clarity.

In Her Name ~ Temple of Learning

News article: Nigerian Sacred Grove

In the past, most Yoruba settlements had sanctuaries like the Osun-Osogbo Sacred Grove in the forests nearby, but now there is no other place like it left in the cultural region of Yorubaland. This is why in 2005 Unesco declared it one of the two World Heritage sites in Nigeria.

(photo copyright A. Opara for the NYT)


Virgen de Guadalupe Feast Day

Today is the feast day of Our Lady of Guadalupe, who was also thought to be honored as Tonantzin, (Earth Mother) by the Nahuan.  

(photo copyright R. Cummins)


News: Netherlands Exhibition

From the article:
"The Goddess Sekhmet, sometimes called the daughter of the sun god Ra and often associated with the goddesses Hathor and Bast, is among the items being displayed in the 'Queens of the Nile' Exhibition held at the National Museum of Antiquities, in Leiden."


Mohawk Greetings to the Natural World

Mohawk Greetings to the Natural World

The People: Today we have gathered and we see that the cycles of life continue. We have been given the duty to live in balance and harmony with each other and all living things. So now, we bring our minds together as one as we give greetings and thanks to each other as people.

Now our minds are one.

The Earth Mother:  We are all thankful to our Mother, the Earth, for she gives us all that we need for life. She supports our feet as we walk about upon her. It gives us joy that she continues to care for us as she has from the beginning of time. To our mother, we send greetings and thanks.

Now our minds are one.

The Waters:  We give thanks to all the waters of the world for quenching our thirst and providing us with strength. Water is life. We know its power in many forms-waterfalls and rain, mists and streams, rivers and oceans. With one mind, we send greetings and thanks to the spirit of Water.

Now our minds are one.

The Fish:  We turn our minds to the all the Fish life in the water. They were instructed to cleanse and purify the water. They also give themselves to us as food. We are grateful that we can still find pure water. So, we turn now to the Fish and send our greetings and thanks.

Now our minds are one.

The Plants:  Now we turn toward the vast fields of Plant life. As far as the eye can see, the Plants grow, working many wonders. They sustain many life forms. With our minds gathered together, we give thanks and look forward to seeing Plant life for many generations to come.

Now our minds are one.

The Food Plants:  With one mind, we turn to honor and thank all the Food Plants we harvest from the garden. Since the beginning of time, the grains, vegetables, beans and berries have helped the people survive. Many other living things draw strength from them too. We gather all the Plant Foods together as one and send them a greeting of thanks.

Now our minds are one.

The Medicine Herbs:  Now we turn to all the Medicine herbs of the world. From the beginning they were instructed to take away sickness. They are always waiting and ready to heal us. We are happy there are still among us those special few who remember how to use these plants for healing. With one mind, we send greetings and thanks to the Medicines and to the keepers of the Medicines.

Now our minds are one.

The Animals:  We gather our minds together to send greetings and thanks to all the Animal life in the world. They have many things to teach us as people. We are honored by them when they give up their lives so we may use their bodies as food for our people. We see them near our homes and in the deep forests. We are glad they are still here and we hope that it will always be so.

Now our minds are one.

The Trees:  We now turn our thoughts to the Trees. The Earth has many families of Trees who have their own instructions and uses. Some provide us with shelter and shade, others with fruit, beauty and other useful things. Many people of the world use a Tree as a symbol of peace and strength. With one mind, we greet and thank the Tree life.

Now our minds are one.

The Birds:  We put our minds together as one and thank all the Birds who move and fly about over our heads. The Creator gave them beautiful songs. Each day they remind us to enjoy and appreciate life. The Eagle was chosen to be their leader. To all the Birds-from the smallest to the largest-we send our joyful greetings and thanks.

Now our minds are one.

The Four Winds:  We are all thankful to the powers we know as the Four Winds. We hear their voices in the moving air as they refresh us and purify the air we breathe. They help us to bring the change of seasons. From the four directions they come, bringing us messages and giving us strength. With one mind, we send our greetings and thanks to the Four Winds.

Now our minds are one.

The Thunderers:  Now we turn to the west where our grandfathers, the Thunder Beings, live. With lightning and thundering voices, they bring with them the water that renews life. We are thankful that they keep those evil things made by Okwiseres underground. We bring our minds together as one to send greetings and thanks to our Grandfathers, the Thunderers.

Now our minds are one.

The Sun:  We now send greetings and thanks to our eldest Brother, the Sun. Each day without fail he travels the sky from east to west, bringing the light of a new day. He is the source of all the fires of life. With one mind, we send greetings and thanks to our Brother, the Sun.

Now our minds are one.

Grandmother Moon:  We put our minds together to give thanks to our oldest Grandmother, the Moon, who lights the night-time sky. She is the leader of woman all over the world, and she governs the movement of the ocean tides. By her changing face we measure time, and it is the Moon who watches over the arrival of children here on Earth. With one mind, we send greetings and thanks to our Grandmother, the Moon.

Now our minds are one.

The Stars:  We give thanks to the Stars who are spread across the sky like jewelry. We see them in the night, helping the Moon to light the darkness and bringing dew to the gardens and growing things. When we travel at night, they guide us home. With our minds gathered together as one, we send greetings and thanks to the Stars.

Now our minds are one.

The Enlightened Teachers:  We gather our minds to greet and thank the enlightened Teachers who have come to help throughout the ages. When we forget how to live in harmony, they remind us of the way we were instructed to live as people. With one mind, we send greetings and thanks to these caring teachers.

Now our minds are one.

The Creator:  Now we turn our thoughts to the creator, or Great Spirit, and send greetings and thanks for all the gifts of Creation. Everything we need to live a good life is here on this Mother Earth. For all the love that is still around us, we gather our minds together as one and send our choicest words of greetings and thanks to the Creator.

Now our minds are one.

Closing Words:  We have now arrived at the place where we end our words. Of all the things we have named, it was not our intention to leave anything out. If something was forgotten, we leave it to each individual to send such greetings and thanks in their own way.

Now our minds are one.

("Gathering the Day" painting, copyright Susan Spar.  This translation of the Mohawk version of the Haudenosaunee Thanksgiving Address was published in 1993, courtesy of Six Nations Indian Museum.)


Happy Full Moon

Blessings of the Full Moon in Taurus.
May it bring you strength and grounding in the beauty of the Earth Mother.

("Taurus" copyright Susan Seddon Boulet)

In Her Name ~ Temple of Learning


Goddess Eirene (Peace)

"How far peace outweighs war in benefits to man; Eirene (Peace), the chief friend and cherisher of the Mousai (Muses); Eirene, the enemy of revenge, lover of families and children, patroness of wealth."

Euripides, 5th century BCE
(trans. Vellacott )


Happy Dia de los Muertos

Many blessings to you and your ancestors!

(La Catrina by Ari De La Mora, copyright reserved)


To the Female Aumakua

"O female aumakua and ancestral chieftesses
Female aumakua at the rising and setting places of the sun,
Female (spirits) in the firmaments of the heaven and of the clouds. . .
To all the female aumakua;
it is yours (the mana) to
brush aside darkness,
brush aside death,
brush aside trouble."
(prayer chant from "Ka Po'e Kahiko: The People of Old"; painting of Pele by A. Johnson.)

In Her Name ~ Temple of Learning


October Full Moon

Blessings of the 'Moon of the Falling Leaves' in Aries!
May that which no longer serves fall easily away,
allowing peace and beauty to remain.

(photo copyright B. Currie.)


Happy Navratri!

The nine-day Hindu festival of Maha Navratri is now being celebrated through October 10th.  At this time, nine forms of Shakti/Devi are honored.  Each region in India celebrates this festival in their own manner, but in some traditions, three days each are dedicated to Durga, Lakshmi and Sarasvati.  On the tenth day, Vijayadashami is observed.  This holiday celebrates the harvest season and renewing the health of the soil.
(Garba dance photo, copyright H. Jadeja.)


Happy Equinox

May the beauty of the season bless your Equinox!
(Woodland Fairy artwork by Ruth Sanderson, copyright reserved.)


News: Aphrodite statue at Petra

From the article:
"Researchers working in Jordan, at the ancient city of Petra, have unearthed two statues of the mythical goddess of love: Aphrodite. The marble statues were discovered during the excavation of domestic structures in the North Ridge section of the city this past summer."

(photo copyright T. Parker)


September Full Moon

Happy Full Moon in Pisces!
May the Harvest Moon bring you many blessings.


Goddess News: Neolithic figurine in Turkey

From the article:
"Archaeologists at Turkey's neolithic site of Çatalhöyük in central Anatolia have unearthed a "unique" complete female figurine, The Ministry of Culture and Tourism said on Tuesday."

(photo copyright Daily Sabah)


Goddess News: Goddess Cybele statue

From the article:
"An estimated 2,100-year-old rare marble statue of Cybele, the mother goddess of Anatolia, has been unearthed in excavations in northwestern Ordu province located on the Black Sea coast. The historic sculpture of Cybele sitting on her throne weighed a whopping 200 kilograms and was about 110 centimeters tall. The statue is also the first marble statue found in Turkey in its original place."

(photo copyright Daily Sabah)


Goddess News: Goddess Mohini Unearthed

From the article:
"An at least 800-years-old temple has been unearthed in Dinajpur’s Kaharol that has a unique architecture and includes a unique idol, that of the Vishnu avatar Mohini.  This goddess is well-known across South and West India, but the Kaharol temple is the first of its kind discovered in the eastern subcontinent. Experts say the implications of this finding may change predominant ideas about the region’s history and traditions."

(photo copyright Dhaka Tribune)


Goddess Akewa and the Solar Eclipse

Blessings of the Solar Eclipse!  There are many Solar Goddesses to be found throughout the world.  In the Gran Chaco region of Argentina, the Toba people honored the Sun Goddess Akewa.  Long ago, she and her radiant sisters illuminated the sky, but they were curious about Earth and the men who lived there (without women), so they climbed down a rope to visit them.  The men cut the rope, preventing the star-women from ever returning to the heavens.  Only Akewa remained in the sky, as she had not yet descended.  Every day she walks above the Earth from one side to the next, reminding all women that they are related to Her.  Occasionally a giant jaguar tries to eat her and this results in a solar eclipse. Akewa always escapes, as she is too hot to consume. 

In Her Name ~ Temple of Learning


Goddess news: Etruscan Goddess Uni

From the article:
"The discovery indicates that Uni – a divinity of fertility and possibly a mother goddess at this particular place – may have been the titular deity worshipped at the sanctuary of Poggio Colla, a key settlement in northern Etruria, Italy, for the ancient Etruscan civilization."

(photo copyright Mugello Valley Project)


Goddess news: Elaborately tattooed mummified Priestess

From the article:
"A Quebec researcher is celebrating the discovery of an intricate collection of tattoos found on the mummified body of a woman who lived more than 3,300 years a...go. The markings are the first on a mummy from dynastic Egypt to show actual objects, including lotus blossoms on the mummy's hips and cows on her arm, the scientific journal Nature reported. . . The researchers believe the mummy is of a woman between the ages of 24 and 35 years old who may have been a priestess to the Egyptian goddess Hathor."

(photo, copyright Radio-Canada)

Goddess news: Light Festival in Chennai

From the article:
"The triumphant smile of the glittering goddess Amman is visible from quite a distance down the Old Mahabalipuram Road in South Chennai. . . Such luminous images are a common sight temples across Tamil Nadu at this time of the year. . . 'Our forefathers have always put up these decorations," said Kumar. "We are just following the tradition. In the villages, the light setting is even grander'."
(photo Scroll.in, copyright reserved)


Full Moon in Aquarius

Blessings of the Full Moon in Aquarius!
 May Her light pour out beautiful dreams upon you.

(Aquarius, copyright Ellerslie)


Hail Hekate

"Yes, lend me your hand I pray,
 And reveal to me the pathways of divine guidance that I long for.
 Then shall I gaze upon that precious Light
 Whence I can flee the evil of our dark origin.
Yes, lend me your hand I pray,
 And when I am weary, bring me to the haven of piety with your winds.
 Hail, many-named mother of the Gods, whose children are fair
 Hail, mighty Hekate of the Threshold."
(Hekate relief, Thera, 200 BCE. Athens National Archaeological Museum. Proclus Diadochus Hymn, trans. Vogt)

Goddess news: Roman coins unearthed

From the article:

"These include depictions of Minerva, the Roman goddess of wisdom, advancing with a shield and javelin; Fortuna, the goddess of fortune, holding a rudder; Pax, the goddess of peace; a winged thunderbolt on a throne; Roma, a female deity who personified the city of Rome, seated above a shield; and Venus, the goddess of love and beauty, holding an apple and drawing her robe to her shoulder. "

(photo copyright the British Museum)


In Praise of Yemanja

"Yemaya Assessu,
Assessu Yemaya
Yemaya Olodo,
Olodo Yemaya."
(Traditional chant honoring Her as the river flowing into the ocean,  Photo of Yemanja statue at Santa Vitoria do Palmar, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, copyright F. Bras.)

In Her Name ~ Temple of Learning


Lammas/Lughnasadh Blessings

Gather your harvest carefully.
It not only provides sustenance for today,
but the seeds for the following one as well.
("Harvest" painting by Z. Serebriakova,1915)


Goddess news: Roman goddess unearthed at South Shields

From the article:
"The dramatic discovery is a beautifully crafted miniature bronze figure of the Roman goddess Ceres which is thought to be a mount from a larger piece of furniture. Ceres was the goddess of agriculture, grain and fertility which is a highly appropriate goddess for Arbeia because it was a supply base where thousands of tons of grain were stored in granaries to feed the army stationed along Hadrian’s Wall. This is the second goddess that the WallQuest project has found at Arbeia in two years. In 2014, a local volunteer found a carved stone head of a protective goddess, or tutela.
(photo copyright The Shields Gazette.)


Goddess news: Bonalu festival

"One of the central tenets of Hinduism is the concept of the Shakti, the feminine energy embodied by the universal mother who is revered in various forms across India. Currently, the mother goddess is being celebrated in the southern state of Telangana with an array of rituals that comprise the festival of Bonalu dedicated to Goddess Mahankali. The word ‘Bonalu’ means a meal or a feast in Telugu. It signifies the offering of rice cooked in milk and jaggery in new earthen pots which are presented to the goddess along with vermillion, turmeric, and bangles. . . Another important element of the festival is the ‘Rangam’ or the Oracle where a woman foretells the events of the next year by invoking the spirit of Mahankali on herself."

Read the article:
(photo copyright AFP/Getty)


Full Moon Blessings

Happy Buck and Thunder Full Moon in Capricorn!
May you connect deeply with the Earth Mother
and with yourself in the process.


Hymn to the Stars

"With holy voice I call the stars on high,
Pure sacred lights and genii of the sky.
Celestial stars, the progeny of Night,
In whirling circles beaming far your light,
Refulgent rays around the heavens ye throw,
Eternal fires, the source of all below.
With flames significant of Fate ye shine,
And aptly rule for men a path divine.
In seven bright zones ye run with wandering flames,
And heaven and earth compose your lucid frames:
With course unwearied, pure and fiery bright
Forever shining through the veil of Night.
Hail twinkling, joyful, ever wakeful fires!
Propitious shine on all my just desires;
These sacred rites regard with conscious rays,
And end our works devoted to your praise."
("The Hymns of Orpheus", trans. T. Taylor, photo of spiral snowflake galaxy by NASA.)
In Her Name ~ Temple of Learning:  Goddess Devotions


Corn Grinding Song

Corn Grinding Song
There towards the North,
There the fog is lying,
There the fog is lying.
In the middle stands Blue Corn
Happily, prettily, she is singing
Ha-we-ra-na na-a-se
There towards the West
There the fog is lying,
There the fog is lying,
In the middle stands Yellow Corn
Happily, prettily, she is singing
Ha-we-ra-na na-a-se
There towards the South
There the fog is lying,
There the fog is lying,
In the middle stands Red Corn
Happily, prettily, she is singing
Ha-we-ra-na na-a-se
There towards the East
There the fog is lying,
There the fog is lying,
In the middle stands White Corn
Happily, prettily, she is singing
Ha-we-ra-na na-a-se
(Traditional Tewa song-prayer. "Corn Dawn Maiden" painting by Marti Fenton, copyright reserved.)


Full Moon and Solstice Blessings

Blessings of the Full Moon and the Summer Solstice.
May abundance and creativity flow!


Happy Vestalia!

Today is the first day of the Vestalia.  In Rome, this festival honored the Goddess Vesta and took place from June 7th-15th.  On the first day, the Holy of Holies of the Temple was opened for women to leave their offerings.

Hymn to Vesta
"Daughter of Saturn, venerable dame,
The seat containing of unwearyed flame;
In sacred rites these ministers are thine,
Mystics much-blessed, holy and divine
In thee, the Gods have fixed place,
Strong, stable, basis of the mortal race:
Eternal, much-formed ever-florid queen,
Laughing and blessed, and of lovely mien;
Accept these rites, accord each just desire,
And gentle health, and needful good inspire."

(quote from The Hymns of Orpheus. (trans. T. Taylor) "In the Temple of Vesta", painting by Constantin Holscher, 1902)


Calgary exhibit shows historic faces of money

From the article:
"The Calgary exhibit gives visitors a glimpse at the first coins to be accepted internationally — the face of the Greek goddess Athena and the Athenian owl."
(photo of the helmeted head of Athena coin, copyright CBC)


Happy Full Moon

Blessings of the Full Flower Moon in Sagittarius.
 May you walk with beauty now and always.


News: Moon Goddess Statue at Shipwreck Discovered

From the article:
""The Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA) announced today (May 16) the discovery of the Late Roman-era artifacts, which include a figurine of a moon goddess and a lamp carrying the likeness of a sun god. Archaeologists also found two stashes of coins, still clumped in the shape of the vessel that once carried them."
(photo copyright R. Feinstein)


News: Fu Hao; queen, priestess and leader of warriors

"As the title suggests, Fu Hao was a queen, mother and military general. Those facts have been confirmed by historical records found on oracle bones and burial artifacts in her tomb. . . The texts and burial objects also show Fu Hao as a high priestess. Wine vessels believed to have been used in religious ceremonies were unearthed, along with oracle bone texts suggesting Fu Hao hosted visits to the king by distinguished foreign guests. 'Fu Hao's name was discovered frequently on oracle bone artifacts long before her tomb was unearthed,' archeologist Zheng Zhenxiang told visitors at the opening of the museum exhibit.


Beltane Blessings!

Blessings of the Season!
(illustration by Florence Mary Anderson, 1916)


Praise to Kurukulla

"From the expanse of ultimate reality,
Your supremely blissful body emerges,
The color of love and passion,
Resplendent as a dazzling lotus. . .
Your compassion is boundless and unchangeable;
Your four arms brandish a hook that summons,
Noose that flings to the unexcelled realm, and
Bow and arrow of wisdom and artful liberation.
Praises to you, beautiful goddess!"

Traditional Tibetan Buddhist prayer


News article: Celebrations of Goddess Tin Hau

From the article:
"For the next two months, devotees in Hong Kong will hold elaborate events in the name of the Chinese goddess whose well-established date of birth is the 23rd day of the third month in the lunar calendar. This year, it falls on April 29 but festivities have already kicked off. On Sunday, thousands will gather outside the Tin Hau temple in Tai Po for Taoist rituals, traditional dances and displays of paper models of altars called fa pau (literally, flower firecrackers). This is followed by weeks of street parades (the biggest is in Yuen Long), temple ceremonies, Cantonese opera performances in temporary bamboo marquees and, finally, a flotilla of Aberdeen fishing boats decked out in colourful flags at the end of June."

(photo copyright, D. Lee)


News Article: Hatshepsut

From the article:
"Last week, Egypt's Ministry of Antiquities announced a discovery connected to Hatshepsut that provides greater insight into the life story of this remarkable female pharaoh. The German Archaeological Institute uncovered blocks that likely belonged to one of her buildings."
(Statue at Temple of Hatshepsut at Deir el Bahari, Egypt. (iStock)


Earth Prayer

"Let us give thanks for the world around us.
Thanks for all the creatures, stones and plants
Let us learn their lessons and seek their truths,
So that their path might be ours,
And we might live in harmony, a better life.
May the Earth continue to live,
May the heavens above continue to live,
May the rains continue to dampen the land,
 May the wet forests continue to grow,
 Then the flowers shall bloom
 And we people shall live again."

Hawaiian Prayer

(Gaia by Katherine Skaggs, copyright reserved)


Happy Full Moon!

Blessings of the Full Moon in Scorpio.
May your goals and dreams flower into fruition!


Mother Goddess

Mother Goddess
S. Bihar, India, 1st-2nd century BCE
(photo copyright J. Eskenazi)


News article: Text may reveal Gods worshipped by Etruscans

From the article:
"It would be a rare discovery to identify the Etruscan god or goddess to which the sanctuary was dedicated. Apart from the famous seaside shrine at Pyrgi, with its inscribed gold plaques, very few Etruscan sanctuaries can be so conclusively identified."

(photo copyright Mugello Valley Project)


Enrollment Reminder

A reminder that the next deadline to apply to our home-study mystery school is coming up on March 31st. If you are interested in learning more and receiving an enrollment guide, please visit our webpage:


Full Moon Blessings

Blessings of strength and peace on the Crow/Sap Moon.