by Renée Damoiselle
Sometimes in life it feels like we can use a little support! We fight battles every day, don’t we?
Some of them are quite literal battles and some are more metaphorical. Whatever you’re struggling with, working on, fearing or reaching for, there is a Goddess who can help.
Set forth below are brief descriptions of 7 Warrior Goddesses and the reasons you might want to work with them. If you can’t seem to find your own power in any given situation, borrow a bit from one of these amazing Ladies. I’ll give you some tips on how to do that.
But first, let’s get down a few basics.
When I say “working with a goddess” (or working with any deity for that matter), what I’m talking about is building a relationship with that entity.
Whether you believe the gods and goddesses to be actual autonomous supernatural entities or simply believe these mythologies represent psychological archetypes, they can be extremely useful to you in your endeavors.
Alright. If you’re going to do battle, you need a few rules of engagement.
The first thing I’m going to lay on you, my witchy friends, is some really powerful shit. Magic Words. Yup, you need some specific Magic Words to deal with deity.
When I teach this subject in person, I usually put the question out to the crowd. “What are the Magic Words?” … usually the response is … crickets.
If there is an audience member under the age of 10 and if I prod enough, generally that child will eventually raise her hand and say… “um… Please and Thank You?”
YES little magical child! Yes! Please and Thank You!
The point is, we approach a deity with respect and gratitude. We are building relationships here, asking favors. It’s a little different from what most Americans normally think of as prayer. It’s not one-sided. Remember that and you’ll be alright.
Also, the Goddesses set forth below all have very rich mythologies and there are differing opinions on what mythologies apply to them and what may have been more recently made up or blended with other deities. PLEASE, do some research!
This quick overview is intended to give you some idea of which goddesses you may want to work with.
It is not intended as the final word. If you find yourself attracted to a particular warrior based on these descriptions, then get more information on her.
Do your research with a sincere desire to get to know her in your heart. This will move you forward in your relationship.
I’m going to give you some basic ideas about offerings, altar spaces and ritual practice.
Experiment with these things. There is no hard and fast right or wrong in these practices. You will slowly get to know these entities and how they communicate with you!
If you approach with respect and sincerity you will be well received.
And before we get into the goddess stories, I want to offer you one more word about requesting the presence of the goddess for your ritual, prayer, meditation or offering.
You can invoke a deity by requesting Their presence and lighting a candle and paying attention to the energies around you. This implies inviting the goddess IN from somewhere else (her own realm, I guess). And this is fine.
But you’d do well – and, I believe, find yourself much more empowered in the long run, to EVOKE the goddess. This is the practice of bringing her into your presence from where she truly resides…. Inside of you!
“If that which thou seekest, thou findest not within thee, thou wilt never find it without.” ~ Doreen Valiente.
If you’re not familiar with that quote… please – do yourself a huge favor and google it. You will not be disappointed.
And now… on to our Goddesses!
Do you need a great strategy for your battle? An intellectual approach? Do you need to curb those emotions? Athena might be the Lady for you. I think she’s perfect for someone going through a divorce or other court battle.
The Greek goddess, Athena, is usually portrayed as one of the most benevolent goddesses. “Athena – Goddess of Wisdom” is known for her superb logic and intellect.
A supreme strategist, She helped Perseus defeat the Gorgon. She is always on the side of the Hero trying to accomplish the impossible.
If Athena were to wear a button on her …. well, her breast-plate, it would read “Keep Calm and Reason On!”
If you are on a hero’s quest or in need of cool-headed assessment of a battle …. Athena is the lady to call upon.
Honor her with images of owls, shields and spears, also with artisanal creations including writing, weaving and metal-craft. Her candle should be royal blue or gold.
2. The Morrigan
While Athena keeps us detached and calculating, there is no doubt that sometimes a bit of a fierce, powerful, passionate rage is what is called for.
Are you a bit “Goth”? Do images of ravens appeal to you? Do you LOOOOVE to wear all black?
This Celtic goddess might be for you. The Morrigan is definitely a witch’s goddess. She’s all about magic and spell-craft and getting what you want.
She’s been known by many names including (but not limited to) Morrigu, Morgain, Morgan, Lady of the Lake.
Our dear Morrigan embodies the phrase, “Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.” She is known for endurance and fierceness in battle. Among her magical talents are shape-shifting and prophecy.
If the Morrigan were to wear a button on her breastplate it would read, “Quoth the Raven, Nevermore.”
If you are drawn to the Morrigan’s power, honor her with images of crows, ravens, bones and blood. Her candle should be black or red.
There are so many issues that this goddess can help with, it’s difficult to boil them down.
Are you an activist? A medical professional? A poet? A blacksmith? A mother who has suffered the loss of a child?
See what I mean? Brigid’s mythology covers such a broad spectrum of life experiences that she can almost suit anyone at any time in their lives.
Brigid, sometimes called Brighd, Bride, Brid, is the Celtic Lady of the Flames: As the warrior she embodies the concept of Fire in so many ways encompassing the other elements as well.
She is often associated with the Forge and metal-craft (Fire meets earth).
In this aspect, she can help with the process of the “Self-forge”. This concept compares the trials and difficulties of life with the smithing of weaponry.
The blade of a sword is repeatedly plunged into the fire and heated almost to the point of destruction and then plunged into water to cool.
This process is called tempering and it strengthens the blade. Call upon Brigid if you’re going through the fire.
Brigid is also seen as a compassionate healer (fire meets water). She was said to have talent with herbal healing.
In her aspect as inspiration for poets and writers (fire meets air) she can help you finish a book or give you inspiration for the lyrics for your next hit song.
In any endeavor Brigid can provide the passion to remain steadfast and perseverant in your quest.
If Brigid were to wear a button on her breastplate it would read, “All Fired Up!”
To honor her, use poetry or anything hand crafted. Images of serpents, calves and ewes are also appropriate. Her candle should be purple.
To help with your research, I highly recommend this wonderful, in-depth book about Brigid, if you are interested in working with her: Brigid: History, Mystery and Magick of the Celtic Goddess by Courtney Weber
Do you fear the label, “bitch”, so often applied to feminists and strong women?
Do you need to be more assertive? Or, alternatively, do you claim that persona and wear it proudly? Are you on the battlefield of today’s feminist movement?
Sekhmet, the Egyptian lioness goddess might just be for you.
Her name means “Powerful”. Fierce and gracious, regal and deadly, She embodies the traits of instinct, temper, death & destruction.
Sekhmet’s breath represented a hot desert wind, and her body was the glare of the midday sun.
She was called “The Great Harlot” in the Book Of Revelations because she represents that aspect of the limitless power in women that terrifies patriarchy!
She is the bitch to embrace! Don’t deny her or her aspect of yourself.
If Sekhmet were to wear a button on her breastplate, it would read, “If you can’t stand the heat, get out of my desert!”
If you recognize something of yourself in this goddess, honor her with images of Lions, the sun, blood and pomegranate flavored beer.
Her candle should be golden/tan (like the color of a lion or the golden desert) or blood red.
Are you battling something that appears to be insurmountable? Have you already approached the enemy from a variety of angles to no avail? You may want to call on Durga.
One of my students recently pointed out that Durga is the goddess of the right tool for the job. And she is!
With a thousand arms and a different weapon in each, Durga can vanquish any demon, even a shape-shifting one!
Her mythology puts her at the very height of the Hindu pantheon.
Durga was formed by the concentrated will of all the existing gods. They created her in response to a demon they could not destroy, which threatened their utter destruction… so naturally, they created a GoddESS to take care of it!
She cannot be defeated.
If Durga were to wear a button on her breastplate, it would read, “Whatever Doesn’t Kill Me Better Run!”
Honor her with images of lotus flowers, lions or tigers, anything golden, bright and reflective.
Her candle should be white and multiple wicked!
Teachers, witches learning spellcraft, would-be seductresses, you may hear the call of the lovely Freya.
Freya, sometimes Freyja, is the Norse Queen of The Valkyries – entitled to half of the fallen heroes on the battlefield.
She taught the spellcraft of the Runes to the Gods, including Odin.
Freya’s mythology includes tales of her irresistible beauty. Her mythology includes tales of unbridled sexuality and even stories which depict her trading sexual favors for a particularly powerful talisman.
The goddess Freya reminds us to explore and acknowledge all of our emotions, longings, and traits, even those we wish we didn’t possess.
If you love Aphrodite and/or Venus – but want a strong warrior essence along with the love aspect…Freya is a great choice.
If Freya wore a button on her breastplate, it would read, “No Regrets!”
She follows heart… who cares what others think?
Do you need this? Honor her with Flowers and Music (as she SO values beauty!) Amber and Gold, images of falcons or cats … (a pair of blue lynx drew her chariot!).
Her candle should be the color of passion! Red!
Are you ready to get real with yourself? Doing some Shadow work, or simply trying to uncover some deep truth in your own nature?
If you are NOT into coddling, Kali may be your lady.
Kali is equated with the eternal night, as the transcendent power of time, so named because she devours kala (time) and then resumes her own dark formlessness.
Kali represents the “enfolded order” in modern physics. She is the formless void, yet full of potential.
Her frightening depictions are misleading, because she brings liberation from shadow, which is the highest form of compassion. The goddess of tough love, Kali is in your face, but on your side.
She can provide you with courage to face the truth and also to release yourself from the false self – the ego.
If Kali wore a button on her breastplate (well.. actually, on her necklace of skulls) – it would read, “The truth shall set you free; but first, it will piss you off!”
Honor her with images of skulls, swords or dance in her honor (a frenzied, ecstatic type of dance).
Her candle and altar should be black.
There you have it, warriors of the world! Now go forth and be Bad-Ass, with a little help from the Ladies here!
If this essay resonates with you, please join our WITCH email list by using the forms on this website so we can stay in touch.
About the Author:
Renée Damoiselle is a Worldly Wise Crone Witch with personal ties to warrior deities. Her “raised eyebrow” style of Truth-Telling enables her clients to face the realities of their challenges and triumphs with confidence and humor (each when necessary). Renée is the Author of the forthcoming book from Red Wheel Weiser publishers entitled, Storytelling Alchemy – Write Your Own Happy Ending. She offers divination and coaching combining Cartomancy, Reiki, Skrying, Mediumship and a healthy dose of good old common sense. She also offers many workshops and talks and facilitates spiritual retreats. Friend her on Facebook.
Check out this site for all the details on Renee’s Retreats!
For more about Renée, read her blog.
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