We continue our last post with 4 more Olympians.
Athena (Αθηνά): Virgin goddess of wisdom (σοφία), war (πόλεμος), justice (δικαιοσύνη) and skill. However, war was rather like a duty for her. She was not proud of it. Her role was more about negotiating and peacekeeping. Her symbols are the spear (δόρυ), the helmet (κράνος) and the shield (ασπίδα) that represent intuition, insight and distinction -the three basic principles of wisdom. She is well known for her mercy and justice.
It is said that once Hephaestus tried to rape her, after a silly prank of Poseidon who said that Athena was seeking for his violent love! Athena managed to repel the would-be rapist, but he ejaculated on her thigh. Athena wiped her leg with a rag, which she threw away from her. The rag found Gaia who was passing from there and fertilized her! Gaia abandoned the newborn immediately after birth. Then Athena feeling responsible for the birth of this child, he grew him up and as her own.
Hephaestus (Ήφεστος): God of fire (φωτιά) and protector of inventors, blacksmith (σιδεράδες) and hand-workers (χειρώνακτες). He is the most underprivileged (αδικημένος) god of Olympus. His mother Hera disgusted by his ugliness, threw him away after his born. Fortunately, for the newborn, he fell into the sea where the nymphs Thetis and Eurynome took care of him. By the fall he broke his leg and he was lame (κουτσός) ever since. Hephaestus became a great blacksmith and he regained the position that deserves in Olympus. Hera enchanted by his beautiful creations and being remorseful for what she did when he was a baby, she persuaded Zeus to give him the beautiful Aphrodite for his wife.
Demeter (Δήμτρα): Goddess of the harvest (σοδειάς), the fertility (γονιμότητας) of the earth and the seasons. Sister of Zeus and mother of the queen of the Underworld, Persephone. Demeter never got married but she had a very interesting love life.
Demeter had a relationship with Zeus from which she became a mother of a boy and a girl. The beauty of her daughter attracted Hades who asked her from Zeus. Zeus being afraid of Demeter reaction, he officially refused but he encouraged Hades to abduct her.
So, one day while Demeter’s daughter was picking flowers with her friends, Hades grabbed her, put her in his golden chariot (άρμα) and took her to his underworld kingdom. Demeter was desperately looking for her daughter, until she was informed from one of her friends about the abduction. Being very angry, Demeter forbade the trees and plants to produce seeds until her beloved daughter return to her.
Then Zeus, before the imminent extinction of the human race, promised to bring the daughter back. After negotiations, he manages to have the girl with her mother 9 months of the year and the rest 3 in the underworld with Hades. The daughter is named Persephone, which means “she who brings destruction”- from the despair of her mother who could destroy everything in her loss. So, the 3 months that Persephone is in the underworld it is winter. When Persephone returns to the above world, spring comes with regeneration followed by the rest 3 seasons with blossom.