Underneath Llyn Tegid

The Welsh enchantress-goddess Ceridwen is a Crone deity I have worked with for 20 years. Although not always portrayed as an old woman, she very much fits the crone aspect of devouring mother. If you’re not familiar with her story and lore, the bulk of it can be found in the Hanes Taliesin (The Tale of Taliesin). In this tale, we learn of how Ceridwen brewed the Awen, the elixir of inspiration, in her great pearl-rimmed cauldron. When the brew was stolen (some say purposefully, some say accidentally) by a young boy named Gwion Bach, Ceridwen and Gwion engage in an epic initiatory chase across the land, transforming into various animals before Ceridwen finally swallows the boy whole.

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Hades Day 5

Charon is the ferryman of the dead, serving to carry souls across the river Acheron to the Underworld. In order to board Charon’s ferry, a soul must receive a proper burial and have one coin to pay for passage — in the ancient world, these coins were placed under the tongue of the dead as part of funeral rites. If these conditions were unmet, the dead could not cross to Hades, and were fated to walk the earthly side of the Acheron as ghosts.

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Hades Day 4

Hades’ parents are the Titan gods Kronos and Rhea. Fearing a prophecy that he would be deposed by one of his own children, Kronos swallowed them all just after their birth (with the exception of Zeus). Hades was his firstborn, thus swallowed first, and regurgitated last…

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Hades Day 2

Like many young people, I grew up on a steady diet of myth and story. Greek mythology was a cornerstone of this diet; one of my oldest memories is piling into the elementary school gymnasium on a rainy day to watch Clash of the Titans with my classmates. (The, ahem, 1981 version. Yes, I am *that old*.) My first awareness of Hades, and most of the Hellenic pantheon, came from exposure to the classics in school. 

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Hades Day 1

Hades, according to ancient Greek mythology, is the ruler of the Underworld and Lord of the Dead. Being chthonic, or underground, he is also the god of all the riches that come from beneath the earth: precious stones and minerals, as well as rich and fertile soil. He and his brothers, Zeus and Poseidon, divide amongst themselves the three realms of the skies, oceans and the Underwold. 

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30 Days of Devotion: Hades

In honor of the upcoming autumnal equinox, I will be engaging in 30 days of devotional practice for a deity who has become very close to my heart: Hades Aidoneus Chthonius Polydegmon. Or, simply put, Hades. The autumnal equinox signals the day that Hades’ wife, his beloved Persephone, returns to the Underworld and the pair are reunited for the dark half of the year. To frame this devotional practice, I will be using Arrin Deuognatos’ 30 Days of Deity Devotion writing prompts…

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