IV. April

cherry blossoms

April is named for the Latin word aperire, “to bud or open.” Aprilis was its original Roman name translated from the Greek word Aphrilis which was inspired by the Goddess Aphrodite or Aphros. Venus is the planet or “star” of Aphrodite.

Aphrodite as Venus

Venus is the Roman name for the only planet in our Solar System named after a female figure. Venus has captured the imagination of mankind throughout the world.  It has been seen as both the heavenly mother and the earthly mother, the morning star and the evening star. The word “star” is derived from Astarte, the Canaanite name for Venus.  Astarte was seen as the Goddess of fertility and light.

Venus is the bright star that is shining after dusk each night in the Western sky.  A beautiful reminder of the light and inspiration she has given to mankind since the beginning of time..

Venus has been known by many names….

Inanna – Mesopotamia (Iraq, Iran, Turkey, Arabia) – 4000 BC – The greatest of all Goddesses – Venus is her star.

Ishtar – Babylonians and Akkadians (Iraq) – 2500 BC – Queen of the Heavens and Goddess of Love – Wife of Anshar the father of Heaven.

Isis/Tioumoutiri/Quaiti – Egyptians (Egypt) – 2000 BC – The Ancient Egyptians believed Venus to be two separate bodies and knew the morning star as Tioumoutiri and the evening star as Ouaiti. Eventually she was seen as Isis/Hathor.

Atarsamain – Kederites (Iraq/Arabia) – 1700 BC – The morning star of Heaven or counterpart to Ishtar. Rulkdai/Ruda was the known as the evening star.

Astarte – Canaanite (Israel/Lebanon/Jordan) – 1600 BC – Queen of Heaven, goddess of the evening star Venus and Moon. English word “star” comes from this name.

Phosphoros/Eosphoros – (Ancient Greece) – 1500 BC – Saw Venus as two separate stars. Phosphoros was seen as the “Bringer of Light” or “Morning Star”. Eosphoros – was seen as the “Bringer of Dawn” or “Evening Star”.

Astarte – Phoenicians (Israel/Lebanon/Jordan) – 1100 BC – Heavenly Mother and Earth Mother – Mother to Adonis or Adonai and also lover. Father of Adonis is Phoenix, the father of the Phoenicians. Astarte was also referred to as Asherar-yam – Lady of the Sea

Aphrodite – Mycenaeans (Greek) – 1000 BC – Goddess of love and beauty, mother and wife of Apollo the God of Light also called Adonis/Adonai.

Anata/Belta/Davkina – Chaldean (Arabia) – 605 BC – counter parts to Anu/Bel/Hea – also called Mithra the Great Father referred to AD or Adoni (Lord)

Al’Uzza/Al’Lat – Nabataeans (Arabia) – 600 BC – Goddess of the Earth, Stars and Moon.

Anahita – Persian (Iran) – 400 BC – The immaculate one, goddess of war

Eostre/Ostara/Austro – Germanic (Germany) – 100 BC – The Goddess of the new dawn.  The one who caries the sprit of the light. She represents the direction of the East. She was honored as the Goddess of the Spring Equinox.  Her name was given to the Paschal celebration of the Resurrection which eventually became known as Easter.

Freyja/Frigg – 100 AD – Norse (Sweden, Finland, Norway) – Goddess of love, beauty, fertility, war and death. She rules over the heavenly afterlife. After the Christianization of Europe she became affiliated with the Virgin Mary.  The day of the week Friday is named for her.

Venus – 200 AD – Roman (Italy – Mediterranean) – Roman Goddess of love, beauty, sex, fertility, prosperity and military victory. She was born from Sea Foam which gives her the yielding watery feminine ability to balance the fiery aspects of men as seen in the Gods Vulcan and Mars/Ares.  Venus absorbs the tempers of the male essence, uniting the opposites of male and female into mutual affection.

Lucifer/Vesper – 300 AD – In Latin the ancient Greek name Phosphoros  which was originally given to Venus as the “morning star” later became known as Lucifer the “Light Bearer”. Eventually Lucifer was identified as the fallen angel who was cast down from heaven. Eosphoros the “evening star” became known as Vesper.  Throughout the evolution of Christianity Lucifer the light bearer became associated with the devil or satan. (A mirror of the shadow that the Church saw in the beauty of Venus)

Noh Ek’ – Mayan (Mexico) – 500 AD – the Maya civilization developed a religious calendar based in part upon the positions of Venus. Noh Ek’ was known as the Great Star. The Maya were aware of the planet’s movement, and could compute it to within a hundredth part of a day.

Al’Uzza – Quraysh (Arabia) – 525 AD – The Strong mother Goddess who was called upon for protection and victory.

Barnumbirr – Aboriginal (Australia) – the Yolngu people in Northern Australia gather after sunset to await the rising of Venus. As she approaches, in the early hours before dawn, she draws behind her a rope of light attached to the Earth, and along this rope the people are able to communicate with their dead loved ones, showing that they still love and remember them. Barnumbirr is also an important creator-spirit in the Dreaming, who “sang” much of the country into life.

Venus De Milo – Louvre Museu

Venus De Milo – or the Aphrodite of Milos is an ancient Greek statue created between 120 BC – 100 BC. This statue depicts the Goddess of love and beauty. It is thought to have been created by Alexandros of Antioch.  It is currently on display at the Louvre Museum in Paris.

Botticelli – The Birth of Venus c. 1485

Sandro Botticelli – was commissioned by the Medici family to recreate the ancient myth of Venus rising from the sea. The story of her birth was the symbol of mystery through which the divine message of beauty came into the world.  Venus emerges from the sea on a shell which is driven to the shore by flying wind-gods amidst a shower of roses. As she is about to step on to the land, one of the Hours or Nymphs receives her with a purple cloak. Botticelli created a vision of Venus, who came to earth as a gift from Heaven.

Ancient Discoveries

Venus as Fertility Goddess

Today as Archaeologists discover the most ancient artifacts they often name them after Venus.  The earliest of these is the Venus Von Hohle Fels – 38,000 BC – Germany an Upper Paleolithic fertility fetish found with a Bone flute and African animals carvings. Another is the Venus Von Willendorf from Austria.

Symbol for Venus

The astronomical symbol for Venus is the same as the one used in biology for the female sex: a circle with a small cross beneath. The Venus symbol also represents femininity, and in Western alchemy stood for the metal copper. Polished copper has been used for mirrors from antiquity, and the symbol for Venus has sometimes been understood to stand for the mirror of the Goddess.

Venus as Aphrodite and her Connection to Easter

Around 325 AD, Emperor Constantine asked his mother, Queen Helena, to oversee the building of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, to honor Jesus’s death and resurrection. The site she chose for the Church had been a Roman temple dedicated to Aphrodite the mother of Apollo also known as Adonai “the bringer of the light”.  Adonai is often translated as my lord which led to the modern translations of God and Jesus.

Church of the Holy Sepulchre – Jerusalem

As many celebrate Easter Sunday, the resurrection of the light of Jesus. Remember the legacy of light that Venus, Aphrodite and Eostre bring to this sacred story. Let the beauty fill you with love and wonder.

April Showers bring May Flowers…..Stop and enjoy this sacred month by allowing yourself to connect to the stars above you and the  opening of nature around you.  Most of all open to the light that lies within you……filled with love.

Venus in a field of flowers

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