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Embracing the Warrior Goddess

By Stephanie Woodfield

[Snip] “Why would you want to worship a goddess of war?” Usually this is the first question I’m asked when I tell someone my patron goddess in the Morrigan. My own experiences and research have taught me that the Morrigan has many guises. She is a goddess of sovereignty, power, and magick. She is the Great Queen who teaches us to take control of our lives and empower ourselves. The Morrigan is a complex figure; she is far more than a goddess of battle, but it is this aspect that has become the most familiar to us. And unfortunately it is the Morrigan’s connection to warfare that make some hesitate to work with her.

Why is it that we fear the warrior goddess? While most people today would think of war as belonging to the realm of the “masculine,” there are a surprising number of female deities connected to battle. To the Celts she was Andraste, Maeve, Cymidei Cymeinfoll, and the Morrigan, who flew over battlefields in the form of a crow, lending encouragement and strength to her favorite warriors. In Egypt she was Sekhmet and Menhit, the lioness goddesses who drank the blood of their enemies. To the Greeks she was Athena, in Rome, Bellona, in India she appeared as Durga and Kali. The list goes on and on. In mythological terms war has a distinctive feminine side. If so many cultures of the past revered the warrior goddess and held her sacred, why now do we fear her?

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