For millennia, humans have told stories of goddesses who have decreed that, because terrible crimes have been committed against their female loved ones or those under their protection, our world would become a desolate wasteland. They withdrew their spiritual power that made life possible so that no fruits or vegetables would grow to nourish us or no sunlight would warm our bodies. Only when justice was done did these goddesses heal the wasteland so human life could continue.
In ancient Greece, the youthful daughter Persephone was kidnapped from her idyllic wildflower meadow to the Underworld by Hades. Her mother, the great Earth goddess Demeter, wandered the world in great despair seeking her daughter while the crops withered and the people starved. Only when Persephone was returned to live on the Earth was it again abundant. Amaterasu, the Shinto Sun Goddess, hid her life-giving light when she was angered by her brother’s desecration of her queendom that resulted in a friend’s death. Finally, when her brother was banished from heaven and she was lured from her cave and saw her sacredness and beauty in a mirror, the sun’s rays nourished the Earth once more. You may know of more stories from your own tradition.
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