Demeter: The powerful Greek Goddess

Pronounce as Duhmeeter.

Demeter is the Greek Goddess of Agriculture.

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Her role in my humble opinion is often underestimated in the mythology. This women had the power to control vegetation, when she was happy there was a rich harvest, when she went sad the earth dried up. You might ofcourse argue with me…Isn’t that cruel? To put people in distress over your personal issue? But which God kept his/her personal life to himself.

The biggest distress was yet to fall on earth, it was when her daughter Persephone was kidnapped by the King of the underworld, Hades. Demeter searched for her daughter in all corners of the worlds and the upper world of the Gods too. Demeter heartbroken brought drought to the earth, there was no food to eat, people starved. Persephone was her daughter with Zeus. Soon to her disdain she found that her daughter was a captive in the underworld. The Gods who saw their people suffer, begged Zeus for his intervention. Zeus commanded Hades to return Demeter’s daughter to the upper world. And he did. The joy of Demeter flourished the fields, it was green all over. But the drama was not over yet! Hades revealed that Persephone while in underworld ate seeds of the pomegranate. And the laws of the underworld dominates that one who has consumed food in the underworld belonged there. Would Demeter agree? Ofcourse not! It was soon decided that Persephone would come 4-6 months back to the underworld in a year, equivalent to 4-6 seeds she ate of the pomegranate. Thus it was believed the mother would also return to the underworld with the daughter, wherein the earth experienced a period of dry spell.

Upon the return of her daughter she blessed the earth with a rich harvest, thus usually believed to be springtime in the Mediterranean.

She was not all that bad. To what I have observed I think she is one of the most thankful people and gave back in abundance to people who helped her.
This is supported by an incident. Once while she travelled the length and breadth of the world in search of her daughter, she stopped by a King’s palace in disguise as a old maid for shelter. The king appointed her as the caretaker of his sons. In order to thank him, she wanted to bless his son with immortality, thus beginning a ritual of placing his son in fire, the King walks in shocked to stop the process. So she went on to teach her aid Triptolemus the secret of cultivation, as a thanking for his help to retrieve her daughter. He went on to teach many more, hence the belief that mortals learnt to grow crops.

Demeter is also known as Ceres, from which the word cereal is derived from. She is often pictured as a women with a bundle of wheat plant, torch, even corn.

She is also believed to be the Goddess of fertility and referred as law-keeper of life and death.

Demeter has two cult(aka festival) credited to her(leave alone one cult for a God usually set to have suffered), considered as few of the greatest mysteries, speculation still holds ground. They are, the women only cult Thesmophoria and all gender Eleusinian Mysteries. On that later.

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3 thoughts on “Demeter: The powerful Greek Goddess

    • Glad. πŸ™‚
      If you like digging deep, do read on the various theories on her.. Amazing!
      Also, This thing of mating her sibling and her daughter matting her sibling happens too. The theory of marrying within the blood to keep the gene line pure..?! Fascinating!

      Like

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