©Goddess of the New Light Tarot
Although Aphrodite is beautiful, and beloved by the Gods and Goddesses of Olympus, She is no wimp. As coach and inspirational teacher Vered Neta points out, “With a domain that included the innermost feelings of the heart and the source of human passion, Aphrodite had power unlike any other God. Such power is revealed in Her actions toward both Her faithful followers and those who provoked Her anger.”
She commanded Her son Eros to strike Medea with one of His arrows, to make Her fall in love with Jason of the Argonauts. This action ultimately ensured Jason’s success on his quest for the Golden Fleece.
She also cared for the orphaned daughters of Panderos and arranged for their marriages. (Unhappily, before She could persuade Zeus on their behalf, they were carried away by storm winds to the merciless Furies.)
Unfortunately, though, Her meddling in the affairs of the Trojans and Greeks precipitated some of the bloodiest fighting in the Trojan War. However, She managed to strike a temporary truce with the sometimes difficult Hera, who supported the Achaians (the Greeks). To reassure Hera that She bore Her no ill will, Aphrodite granted Hera’s request for a magical garment that would help Her seduce Zeus.
Aphrodite took very seriously the workings of love and sexuality, and could be harsh against those who she felt thwarted the natural flow in all living beings. To punish Glaucus for refusing to let his mares breed, She caused the mares to throw him from his chariot during a race, after which they ate him. She was not messing around!
Aphrodite punished other misdeeds by causing the person responsible to experience misfortune in the areas of love or beauty. She caused the Sirens to grow wings as a result of their unnatural (in Her opinion) wish to remain virgins. When the women of Astypalaea angered Her by claiming to be more beautiful than She, She zapped cow horns onto them. Contest over. And She caused Aegus to be childless until he introduced Her worship in Athens.
Vered sums it up beautifully when she writes, “Clearly, Aphrodite’s abilities were not simply a tool for creating petty loves. They were in fact a real instrument of power, which could affect all beings.”
She writes, “Aphrodite shows and teaches us how powerful our love can be. She can be a role model for us, that beyond anything else, love can become a powerful force in our lives and not some weak element as we see it in today’s songs and culture, where being in love is losing our power.”
Aphrodite is very generous, but demands that we fully honor the erotic forces within all life. Her mission is to serve the loving desires of both mortal and immortal alike. Tomorrow, we’ll explore ways to incorporate Her power into our lives in the present day