2/3/12

Goddess of the Week: Hecate

Hecate Sculpture
Hecate Sculpture (Photo credit: Shain Erin)
Lorena needs a goddess of decision making.  I'm giving her the Greek goddess Hecate, goddess of the crossroads.

Hecate was pretty much your first GPS.  Whenever people in ancient Athens came to a crossroads, they made a sacrifice to Hecate so that she would help them choose the right direction.

The crosswords were--and are--a visible symbol of what all of us know: making choices can be hard.  I find this to be especially true when you are responsible for someone else.  When my sweet (to me, at least) dog Ivy was dying of cancer, everyday I would feel wracked with indecision: is today the day I take her in to end her suffering?  No?  How about today?  And tomorrow's today?  It was awful.  And don't even get me started on parenting decisions.  Oh my God!  Shoot me already!  Would that I had stuck to house plants (although, let's face it, I haven't done so great with them either.)

Hecate reminds us that decisions have costs.  I won't tell you what people would commonly sacrifice to Hecate (OK, I will tell you, but it's disturbing.  Dogs!  There.  I've said it, but I'm forgetting it as soon as I'm done).  Nothing is free in this world, even the choices you make.  If you bring your kids their forgotten homework, they may get a better grade, but they will not learn as much about personal responsibility.  If you don't bring them their homework, they'll learn about personal responsibility, but they'll get lower grades and who knows what horrible future that will resign them too.  No matter what, you're pretty much fucked.  So just make your choice and remember that you're going to have to pay for it one or another.  When in doubt, one simple rule: choose kindness and compassion, even toward yourself.

Channel this goddess: when making decisions, when faced with a crossroads, when driving without a map.


Need a goddess?  I got goddesses!  Post a comment saying what you'd like a goddess for.  Then check back in a week or two and see what you got.  It's fun!  It's free!  It's easier than deciding which of your identical pair of black leggings to wear, which will make sense if you have a 14 year old.  


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17 comments:

altadenahiker said...

Parents would do the homework? This shows how clueless I was, back in the day.

Word in the Hand said...

Choose kindness sounds good - but not Hecarte's way by the look of her. Tough love perhaps

Word in the Hand said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Carrie Rosalind said...

I definitely need Hecate around because I'm a gemini and I'm the queen of changing my mind often, but there's no way I'm sacrificing Marcus to make that happen!

Vanda said...

I like her! She's a multi-faceted, complex woman.

Daisy said...

Sacrificed dogs?? 8-0
Was there no other choice?

But Scout and I do like that final choice of kindness and compassion - especially for dogs!

Margaret said...

I do think some parents do homework, but I meant the child forget the homework.

Desiree said...

I love that the image you chose reflects the drama of decision making

Susan Campisi said...

Those last few lines are perfect. Funny but oh so true and wise.

Deb @ Paper Turtle said...

Mmm-hmmm! I love tis Margaret! I thought of Carrie as I read this. And for the record, I never did her homework. :o)

Pasadena Adjacent said...

I love when teachers use dirty words

he he he he

Petrea Burchard said...

One of your best, Margaret. Worth stealing! I wouldn't, of course. Consequences. But.

Anyway, one of your best. I'm going to read it again. Maybe memorize it. Not steal it, though.

Shell Sherree said...

I'll take all the help I can find with decision making. Sometimes I feel like flipping a coin just to see whether I'm relieved or disappointed at the result. Calling on Hecate sounds more sensible. But I do love your closing suggestion, Margaret. That's a great compass to steer by.

Pearl said...

I wonder if I could use a goddess? I have several muses -- who all refuse to be named, from what I an tell! -- but perhaps a goddess is called for?

Actually, where is the goddess of love? I could use her...

Pearl

Bellis said...

I could do with help at a crossroads, for sure, but I won't turn to Hecate until she stops demanding dog sacrifices. I'm learning about world history by listening to the audio book of A Short History of the World in 100 Objects, and I'm alarmed by all the sacrifices - human and animal - that rulers dreamt up in the past. I'm glad we're more civilized now.

Katie InHerAfterworld said...

I love this GODDESS!

Lenora said...

Love it! Thanks a bunch. Hecate it is. And courage. Just a lot of courage to just do it already, make the choice and get on with it. Lovely post