The Tree of Life Grows in Every Garden Goddesses for Every Day
Taurus is a Fixed Earth sign and embodies the principle of pure substance. Taurus is the matrix that absorbs the impact of the energy projected outward by Aries. Energy is action. Matter is reaction. Alchemically the matter of Taurus is precipitated from the water of Pisces, the twelfth sign, by the fire of Aries. The nature of Taurus, traditionally symbolized by the Bull, expresses stability and permanence. The spiritual path of Taurus involves cultivating higher values versus seeking purely material motives. Taurus natives tend to be builders and sustainers and rarely act without reflection.
The Goddess Sign for Taurus is the Tree of Life. Trees, especially those that bear the fruit of immortality, are connected with the Goddess in cultures around the world. She typically lives in a western garden with a serpent that guards the Sacred Tree. Gardens located in the symbolic west, the place of the sun’s daily death, connote immortality in numerous cultures where the goddess holds the secret to resurrection. The energy, which sinks sustaining roots deep into the Earth, describes the grounding and stabilizing nature of Taurus. Taurus goddesses embody the element of earth, and many are also symbolized by cows or other strong, protective mammals. Qualities of Taurus goddesses are abundance, sustenance, manifestation, security, growth, the establishment of roots, and fertility.
Green Tara is Mother Earth in her oldest form and is the most revered of all the pre-Vedic goddesses of India. She is a female Buddha and one of the aspects of the Great Goddess Tara, who encompasses all manifestations of feminine divinity. She is sometimes called the Mother of the Buddhas. Her name means “star,” or “she who ferries across,” and we can call on her as we move into the spiritual-growth aspect of our lives. Gaia is one of the oldest creation deities from the area that much later became Greece. Her shrines were built in mountain caves and in sacred groves of the oldest trees. In myth, Gaia’s temple at Delphi was given to her by the great serpent being Python. Thousands of years later, when Zeus took over as king of heaven, the Greeks still swore their most sacred and binding oaths to Gaia because they were still subject to her law.
Asherah is another vastly ancient fertility goddess who was worshipped in both Egypt and Canaan, the biblical Promised Land. She was the consort of both Ba’al and Yahweh. She is a benevolent goddess who gave her love freely and was called Mistress of Sexual Rejoicing. In Israel, archaeologists have unearthed thousands of terra-cotta figurines of Ashera, some of which look like pillars or tree trunks.
Maia is the Greek goddess whose name is the origin of the English word May. She embodies the forces of growth and brings the seasonal warming of the earth. The Greeks knew Maia as the Grandmother of Magic. Some stories say she scorned marriage, preferring to be free. Lakshmi is a well-known and beloved Hindu goddess usually equated with wealth. Although most people may believe this refers only to material wealth, her nature is far-reaching, and includes the deeper idea of spiritual riches and alignment to divine wisdom. Her name comes from the Sanskrit word laksya, meaning “aim” or “goal”.
Hathor is one of the most ancient Egyptian goddesses. Her sacred animal is the wild cow, and her magical implement is the sistrum, a type of musical rattle. One image of Hathor is a winged cow that gives birth to the whole universe. When the goddess manifests as the Seven Hathors, who foretold a child’s destiny at birth, she resembles the Greek Fates and other goddesses of fortune. Callisto is another pre-Hellenic goddess whose name means “fairest one.” Like the later Greek Artemis, who took on her qualities, Callisto is a goddess of the hunt who possessed keen instincts. One of her forms is a bear, one of the oldest symbols of the Great Goddess, reaching back in time at least seventy thousand years. She survives in starry form as the constellation Ursa Major.
Asase Yaa is a goddess of the Ashanti people of western Africa. Called Old Woman Earth, she is a creation goddess who gave birth to all of humanity. She also reclaims her children at death as they return to the earth, which is her womb. Hou Tu is a Chinese fertility goddess who is similar to the goddess Gaia and represents the deification of the earth. Her domain is earth magic, and the ceremonies and rituals performed in her honor were believed to bring people into resonance with their Divine Mother.
White Buffalo Calf Woman is the daughter of the sun and moon and comes to earth as a wakan, a holy woman, in critical times to reach humanity. She is Whope, “falling star goddess,” to the Plains Indians, and Ptesan Wi, or “white buffalo calf woman,” to the Sioux. She is a sacred being of supernatural origin who appeared out of a mysterious cloud two thousand years ago, blessing the Sioux with a sacred bundle of seven rituals.
At this time of year in the northern hemisphere the signs of spring are everywhere, and our thoughts turn toward our gardens and growing things. These ancient and powerful Taurus goddesses remind us of the sacredness of the earth and her creatures. We are reminded to walk gently on her body and to respect all life. There is power in the knowledge that the Goddess renews everything in an ever-repeating cycle of death and rebirth.
(Image from snappy goat.com)
Based on and excerpts from Goddesses for Every Day © 2010 by Julie Loar. Printed with permission of New World Library, Novato, CA www.newworldlibrary.com