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Goddesses in Woman: Demeter

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Goddesses in Woman: DemeterThis series of articles is about the female archetypes as Jean Shinoda Bolen described them through goddesses from Greek mythology. Each goddess represents a character structure with good qualities and pitfalls, its own shadow aspects and its own potential for personal growth. This time: Demeter
A bust of Demeter
A bust of Demeter (copy of a Greek original from the 4th century BC, Museo Nazionale Romano). https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File%3ADemeter_Altemps_Inv8596.jpg

The archetype

Mother to her fingertips

Everyone knows the girls who in the classmate book with the sentence ‘What do you want to be when you grow up?’ invariably wrote down “Mother”. Demeter women are mothers by trade and it is motherhood they most identify with. They enjoy the period when the children are still small and regret it when they grow up. When the youngest starts to get along, she may feel the need for an afterthought, because she can’t live without babies and small grits. And when she has grandchildren, she becomes a proud grandmother. A Demeter woman lives for children. Goddesses in the Woman-Demeter

The pattern of life

Demeter is the goddess of grain in mythology. She is the mother of Persephone, who was abducted to the underworld by Hades. Her response to this is the archetypal maternal response when her child is harmed. She stopped eating and drinking, just looking for her daughter. She neglected her duty as a grain goddess, leaving the earth barren and barren. It remained that way for a long time and people were in danger of starvation.

The supreme god Zeus thought it was enough and tried to persuade Demeter to return to Olympus. She refused. She wasn’t going anywhere until she got her daughter back safely. Only after Persephone returned from the underworld did Demeter make the world fertile again.

A Demeter in the cap stands out as a real doll mother. She loves real babies and as soon as she is old enough she wants to babysit. A born Demeter woman prefers to start having children as early as possible and can wait impatiently until she has finished studying and has a job and can finally become pregnant. When the baby arrives, she is completely absorbed in motherhood. Conversations are often only about the baby, sometimes to the point of boredom for friends who are not so ‘Demeterig’.

A Demeter woman considers the care of her children to be of the utmost importance and will usually work part-time or be a stay at home mother. Some Demeter women, in whom Athena is also active, will take up a responsible job in care, combining their caring with a need for professionalism or the desire to provide ‘care from the heart”.

A Demeter woman deeply enjoys caring for . Where Hera cares because she feels it is part of her role as a wife and Persephone does because she feels that it is expected of her, being able to take care of someone for Demeter is an end in itself.

She feels like a chicken that can’t shed her egg if she can’t take care of it. A Demeter female suffers more from other females of ’empty nest syndrome’ when her children are adults. She then has to actively look for a new meaning in her life.

How is the archetype activated?

Demeter can manifest itself very clearly in a woman at a young age, but can also show up later in a woman’s life. That can happen when a woman who has previously focused on her career suddenly wants a child! That can really come as a surprise to a woman if she has always thought that she did not have such a desire to have children and it can also throw her career into disarray. It can also happen that when a woman is about 40 years old, she suddenly fears that she will regret it if she does not have children.Goddesses in the Woman-Demeter

Sometimes women try to activate Demeter consciously, when they are toying with the idea of ​​becoming a mother, but are not sure yet. They read about children, babysit for an afternoon or weekend and try to imagine what it would be like to have a child of their own. They try to wake up the ‘mother jitters’. Sometimes it works, but sometimes it doesn’t, and then a woman often decides to consciously remain childless.

Of course she sometimes wonders what her life would have been like with children, but if a woman doesn’t have that instinctive drive to become a mother (and they certainly don’t all have!), life without children can feel like ‘normal’ one of the many choices in life and she doesn’t care about it.

The Demeter archetype can also grow slowly when a woman has actually had children more out of convention than out of her own desire. The frantic love that a woman feels when her baby is placed on her stomach after birth is a typical Demeter experience and although the introduction to your baby after birth is always special, not every woman experiences it so intensely.

In that case the bond with the child grows after birth and Demeter develops gradually. By placing a strong emphasis on ‘the pink cloud’ after childbirth, the Demeter archetype is forced on women quite aggressively. Not every woman experiences a pink cloud and it is not fair to these women that they are made to feel guilty when they do not experience that natural symbiosis with their baby after birth.

Women who are strongly influenced by the virgin archetypes, although they sincerely love their child, may go through a difficult period of adjustment after becoming a mother. They must learn to take their consciousness away from the ‘I-centeredness’ and develop ‘the consciousness cloud’ in which they unerringly sense their child’s needs. That can be a process associated with depression and feelings of being dislodged and uprooted.

They have to develop a new mode in themselves in which they are both autonomous women and mothers. In a few cases it doesn’t work out and a woman remains a caring but detached mother, who can deliver her children perfectly into society, but who has never had that archetypal motherly feeling. One isn’t better than the other, it’s just different. And sometimes an archetype just doesn’t want to emerge in a woman. And that’s good too. Goddesses in the Woman-Demeter

Instinctively

The Demeter archetype is instinctive. Women who are strongly influenced by the Demeter archetype have little interest in the calculated way in which, for example, an Athena woman makes choices. The urge to become a mother can be enormous and there are no intellectual considerations involved. It’s just there. Even outside of motherhood, Demeter women have an almost reflex inclination to care for others. If they’re not careful, they go beyond their own limits and wear themselves out.

When Demeter plays into a woman’s consciousness, they go to great lengths to conceive when they fail to conceive naturally. They go through grueling IVF journeys in their attempts to cling to every straw in order to conceive. When getting pregnant really doesn’t work out, a Demeter woman falls into a deep pit and life can feel empty and meaningless.

Many teenage girls who get pregnant ‘accidentally’ don’t happen by accident at all. They have a deeply felt motherly desire within and the instinctiveness of the Demeter archetype lies in the fact that it starts to overrule the conscious from the unconscious. She ‘forgets’ to have safe sex. She’s “sloppy” with the pill.

It is peculiar to the instinctive archetypes (Hera, Demeter, Aphrodite) that deep-felt desires knock out the conscious mind and make a woman do things that would never happen to women under the influence of the virgin goddess archetypes, because they are much more intelligent.

A Hera woman goes through rows and panes in order to marry a certain man. A Demeter woman aims for a pregnancy. An Aphrodite woman sets out to have an affair. It’s impossible to explain exactly how they do that, but they always get it done. These women are not stupid, their unconscious is a very strong guiding force in their lives.

The matriarchyGoddesses in the Woman-Demeter 5

Demeter women tend to seek each other out. Demeter mothers mainly seek contact with other mothers and at work she will find close contact with other women important. If a family has strong Demeter women in several generations, they can collectively form a kind of matriarchy in which the men have little say.

They know everything, arrange everything, decide everything, they manage the family as if it were the most natural thing in the world. Demeter women assume that they are indispensable. They regard motherhood as the most important, central and fundamental position on earth. ‘Becoming a mother’ is a kind of initiation rite for them. Once you’ve given birth, you’re part of it.

Demeter women are emphatically present and more or less assume that they are needed. A Demeter woman must have something to run. She feels like a fish in water as a manager of a care department or as a volunteer. She acts like a clan mother. She knows exactly what’s going on, smells it when someone needs something and then does it. Her matriarchal slant can make a Demeter woman a classic matron that a man can’t get past.

Every child belongs

How terribly important children are to a Demeter woman is shown by the fact that she considers all her pregnancies to be her children. A Demeter woman really can’t get an abortion and will regret her whole life if she has to make such a choice. Even a miscarriage, something that every pregnant woman knows can happen and which she mentally ‘buffers’ a bit at the beginning of pregnancy, can feel like the loss of a child to a Demeter woman.

For a Demeter woman, a pregnancy is never unwanted, at most not cleverly planned. The worst thing that can happen to her is to be forced to give up her child for adoption. This often happened to illegitimate children in the past and it was a pointless and cruel practice to take the babies away from the mother immediately after birth. It has left many a Demeter woman a trauma that she has never recovered.

The harsh habit of not so long ago not to bury stillborn children and not to recognize them as persons also leaves an excessively large scar on a Demeter woman. Decades later, women burst into tears when they are reminded of the child they carried and bore, but were unable to mother. Such a woman, if she has two more children, will say with conviction that she has three children, only the third is not there.

For a Demeter woman, the value of a child cannot really be expressed in words. It has left many a Demeter woman a trauma that she has never recovered. The harsh habit of not so long ago not to bury stillborn children and not to recognize them as persons also leaves an excessively large scar on a Demeter woman. Decades later, women burst into tears when they are reminded of the child they carried and bore, but were unable to mother.

Such a woman, if she has two more children, will say with conviction that she has three children, only the third is not there. For a Demeter woman, the value of a child cannot really be expressed in words. It has left many a Demeter woman a trauma that she has never recovered. The harsh habit of not so long ago not to bury stillborn children and not to recognize them as persons also leaves an excessively large scar on a Demeter woman.

Decades later, women burst into tears when they are reminded of the child they carried and bore, but were unable to mother. Such a woman, if she has two more children, will say with conviction that she has three children, only the third is not there. For a Demeter woman, the value of a child cannot really be expressed in words. The harsh habit of not so long ago not to bury stillborn children and not to recognize them as persons also leaves an excessively large scar on a Demeter woman.

Decades later, women burst into tears when they are reminded of the child they carried and bore, but were unable to mother. Such a woman, if she has two more children, will say with conviction that she has three children, only the third is not there. For a Demeter woman, the value of a child cannot really be expressed in words. The harsh habit of not so long ago not to bury stillborn children and not to recognize them as persons also leaves an excessively large scar on a Demeter woman. Decades later, women burst into tears when they are reminded of the child they carried and bore, but were unable to mother.

Such a woman, if she has two more children, will say with conviction that she has three children, only the third is not there. For a Demeter woman, the value of a child cannot really be expressed in words. confidently say that she has three children, only the third is not there. For a Demeter woman, the value of a child cannot really be expressed in words. confidently say that she has three children, only the third is not there. For a Demeter woman, the value of a child cannot really be expressed in words. 

Demeter in relationships

It is a typical Demeter pattern that a woman seeks a man to start a family with. For a Demeter woman, her marriage is secondary to motherhood. She does not make high demands on a man, as Athena and Hera women do, but it is an advantage that he is kind to the children.

She is attracted to men who need a mother figure and will not require them to make a career. As long as he earns enough to allow her to mother undisturbed and her children do not lack anything, she is fine with it. Demeter women can be so preoccupied with motherhood that their partner is of secondary importance.

Another typical Demeter pattern in relationships is for a woman to drop all other interests as soon as they have children. She only talks about the children and the vicissitudes around them, makes no more effort to dress nicely and to be an attractive woman to her partner. She loses sight of her former friends who have no children. Hobbies that she used to enjoy so much are on the back burner or disappear altogether.

The moment she has children, she feels like her life is fulfilled and the rest doesn’t matter anymore. In this way, she can lose her own development and undermine her position in the labor market, which can cost her dearly if her marriage breaks down. And that is not inconceivable, because many women who are completely swallowed by Demeter, hardly invest any more in the relationship with their partner.

When their husbands are no longer satisfied with the relationship, Demeter women may at some point find themselves on their own and often end up as a single mother with a very meager income. Pragmatic as they are, they usually get through it. For themselves, they don’t care about luxury, but it gnaws at them when they can’t give their children everything.

Another Demeter pattern is that of the mother-son relationship. When her husband accepts his wife’s care, she eagerly follows through and can make her husband her ‘extra child’. When the children are adults, the spouse can become a kind of surrogate child.

Along with the powerful husband-servant wife pattern between a Zeus man and a Hera woman and a May-December relationship between an immature Persephone woman and an older man in need of adoration, these are the patterns commonly found in women who are affected. by the vulnerable goddess archetypes. They are actually limiting patterns, but as long as both partners have no problem with them, they can last for a very long time because they both get what they are looking for.

Demeter as mother

A Demeter woman clearly prioritises her children. She will love to be a stay at home mom, or if she works, work very little. She feels guilty for spending too little time with her children in her own eyes.

She finds it important to have her children physically close. She has a hard time handing her children over to someone else’s care—no one knows what they need as well as she does. A Demeter woman experiences motherhood as a life fulfillment. It’s not something you can do for her. You go for it, otherwise you better leave it as far as she’s concerned.

A Demeter mother loves to ‘cuddle’ with her children. Breastfeeding, endless rituals around bathing or changing a diaper, playing endless peek-a-boo games, strolling in the park with a toddler who wants to investigate everything, the pointed remarks, she finds everything about children equally delightful. She can be completely absorbed in the way a child sees the world. She slows down her pace of life to the perception of her child.

She doesn’t care if a 15-minute walk takes an hour because her child wants to see everything, or if eating a sandwich takes half an hour, or if her child puts porridge in his hair. It makes some women impatient, but she enjoys it. She creates a habitat in which her child can explore the world.

A Demeter woman goes to great lengths to protect her children and sacrifices herself when she has to. Just as Demeter moved heaven and earth in mythology to get her daughter Persephone back when she was kidnapped by Hades, a Demeter woman lets everything fall from her hands when her child needs help or is sick.

The carrying capacity, resilience and energy of Demeter mothers are unimaginable. Whether she has to walk miles through the desert with her child in her arm to escape the violence of war, invest all her energy in helping her disabled child, set up a patient association to represent her child’s interests, they do it.

A Demeter woman feels strongly the ‘for the next generation’ of motherhood. When it comes to children, she thinks generations ahead. She is therefore often idealistic. Don’t come to her with natural mysticism. She wants to leave a world in which herchildren also have a good life. Mother’s Day is an ode to the Demeter archetype.

The Dark Sides/The Repression

The dark side of the Demeter archetype has everything to do with an over-identification with the parent role. A woman can go out of her way for her children or those around her to the point that she is drained of her urge to care for and assist everyone. And it is also difficult to get out of this pattern because other people eagerly accept the care she offers. Goddesses in the Woman-Demeter

A small window

Demeter women are sometimes so engrossed in their caring role that they don’t seem to realize that the world is bigger than poopy diapers, jars of olvarit and snot noses. Of course, motherhood is also incredibly important, but Demeter mothers can go overboard and become complacent.

They can be very judgmental about women who don’t prioritize motherhood as much as they do. Because they themselves are strongly instinctively driven to become mothers and care for children, it is difficult for them to imagine that other women have more rational and creative drives. In fact, the world outside the family passes them by. Sometimes they don’t think much of women with careers,

Demeter women can be blindly convinced that the way they interpret motherhood is the only right one. Mothers can bombard new mothers with all kinds of advice on how to handle a baby that can sometimes be quite contradictory. The more autonomous mothers among us will have noticed that quite a bit of passive aggression is played out in the schoolyard between mothers who think they know better and mothers who are a bit ‘looser’ about motherhood.

Passive Aggression

A Demeter woman will not directly say that she disagrees with something. She doesn’t dare. Instead, she tries to make the other person feel how she feels about it. And women under the influence of the dependent goddess archetypes will immediately pick up such a sting underwater (and usually get the corrective message out of it), but a typical virgin goddess woman probably won’t even notice, let alone care. leave it. And that is especially true for men.

If a Demeter woman doesn’t achieve the desired effect with passive aggression (and often does), she will feel passed over, but she won’t express that either. She accumulates her anger, which usually manifests itself in depression, or she becomes sour and bitter. ‘I always have to do everything alone here in the house’ is a typical Demeter statement.

She doesn’t ask for help. On the one hand she wants to be in control herself and she feels good when she is the pivot around which everything revolves, on the other hand she overloads herself and because of her ‘cloudy’ consciousness she feels too late that she is taking too much hay. .

Running empty on caring for others

A Demeter woman can run all her life to please everyone. And the downside of that role is that everyone takes her care for granted and rarely thanks for it. And that’s going to gnaw at a Demeter woman. She feels overloaded, but is not likely to say so, while she does want to be taken into account.

She can either swallow her anger endlessly, which can manifest itself in depression, or she can try to bite herself in the form of passive aggression. This often does not have the desired effect, so that she remains with her anger, and other people experience her as unpleasant to deal with. It often doesn’t occur to people that she just doesn’t feel like taking care of someone else, because she always does it with conviction.

Standing up for oneself respectfully

A Demeter woman may learn to communicate her wants and needs in a clear and confident tone. She can say that she is short of hands and that she needs help. She can take up the space she needs. She can afford herself not to be the pivot around which everything revolves. She may say: “This is too much work, I need help with this”. And she will have to learn to say, “I would have done it differently than you do, but you are still a mother who wants the best for her child in her own way.”

The dominant mother

A Demeter woman finds genuine joy in caring for others, but the downside is that she becomes so dependent on her motherhood for her fulfillment in life that she becomes compulsively caring to feel useful. She doesn’t accept ‘no’ when someone wants to do something herself or when her children grow up and don’t need their mother as much anymore.

In more innocent cases, she is an overprotective mother who is busy with overflowing lunchboxes and pans full of food, because they would be short of something. But a Demeter woman can also become a bossy, possessive and claimant mother who does not allow her children space for themselves. She wants to be involved in every decision of her children and forces everything in the family to be done her way.Goddesses in the Woman-Demeter

A Demeter woman can go through a grieving process when her children move out or when she enters menopause. Even if her family is already complete, the knowledge of not being able to have any more children is very painful. Some women feel sadness when they stop breastfeeding. They are so attached to the mother-child symbiosis that they already experience an empty nest syndrome, so to speak, when their children no longer breastfeed.

Depression

Because a Demeter woman is so dependent on others for her well-being, she is more prone to depression than other women. Because she needs others to need her, she can be extremely sad when her children are out of the house, when she is overworked at work, when she finds herself not appreciated (or kept at a distance because she is very overbearing). is) or when her children rebel against her during puberty. She does not always see that these are normal life events, or when she is rejected, that she herself has a part in the situation.

A Demeter woman can also become depressed because she is overworked because she goes out of her way for others. She has the diffuse consciousness of the vulnerable goddesses par excellence and notices too late that she is crossing her boundaries. Depression is often the ultimate signal from the body to stop it.

Being an earth woman par excellence, she seems to wilt like a plant and winter in her mind when she is depressed. She no longer functions well, can no longer be motivated and wallows in her own grief. Where more autonomous women continue to work despite being depressed, a Demeter woman simply cannot.

Everything comes to a halt and she has to go through her psychic winter. And just as spring is heralded by the first green blades, something in the mind of a Demeter woman eventually begins to sprout again, her depression resolves and she can resume her life.

The perfect mother complex

A Demeter woman can idolize her child so much that she feels she is falling short if she is not a perfect mother to her child. She sets the bar very high and her image of ‘perfect motherhood’ is often so unrealistic that it is more likely to harm her child. A mother who is in love with her child can impose too few limits on it, so that it does not learn to deal with resistance. There can be a kind of competition with other mothers about who is the most perfect mother.

This can lead to excesses that make no one really happy, such as a race for the most playful birthday treat, the hippest lunch box, or a creative braid in the hair every day. A woman who suffers from the perfect-mother complex constantly feels that her worth as a woman is measured by her qualities as a mother. In part it is—everyone likes to see a good mother—but the demands she feels she has to meet can be so subjective, so insanely high, and so interfering with her well-being that she begins to suffer from her own ambition.

And because Demeter mothers measure each other quite well, a woman who does not do well in the eyes of other women, will also receive clear rejections. And being told by another mother that you are not doing well as a mother is unpalatable to a Demeter mother. And because Demeter mothers measure each other quite well, a woman who does not do well in the eyes of other women, will also receive clear rejections.

And being told by another mother that you are not doing well as a mother is unpalatable to a Demeter mother. And because Demeter mothers compare each other to each other, a woman who does not do well in the eyes of other women will also receive clear rejections. And to be told by another mother that you are not doing well as a mother is indigestible for a Demeter mother.

Demeter women are receptive to the ‘pink cloud complex’: motherhood should be one big euphoric celebration and if it isn’t, they feel inadequate. They may feel guilty if they fail to breastfeed. Or a degenerate mother when they are completely done with the broken nights, the laundry baskets full of pooped rompers and burp cloths, the slow pace with a child or the fact that your social contacts are drastically thinned.

That may, that may. A Demeter mother sometimes forgets that she also has an identity next to her child and she sometimes longs back to the time when life was simple…

Many mothers will have noticed that the pressure to breastfeed is very high. In the personal circle or on the internet played out (often that passive!) aggression of the ‘milk mafia’ or the ‘tit police’ (I will quote some flattering names 😉 ) the extreme mother-identification of some Demeter women comes to the fore when it comes to the ‘act of acts’ of motherhood involves breastfeeding.madonna-breastfeedingI’ll be sober about it: that doesn’t always work. And many children have died because of that. It was not for nothing that wealthy women had a ‘minus’: a woman who helped breast-feed so that the beloved heir could survive. Of course it’s great if you can feed your child yourself, but if that doesn’t work: bottle-feeding really doesn’t kill them.

A woman close to me was sharply criticized for switching to bottle-feeding a few weeks after the birth of her child. She should have tried longer and she was easy going. But she didn’t have that much milk, and with her medical background, she knew that a small lack of nutrients would impair her baby’s brain development at this early stage. At least with bottle feeding, she was sure her baby was getting enough.

Opportunities for growth

Resisting the Call of Motherhood

There is of course nothing wrong with motherhood or a desire to have children, but Demeter women can follow their desire to have children so instinctively that they make choices that are disadvantageous. They may become pregnant too young, or try to escape an unhealthy family situation by becoming a mother, or drop out of education or work below their intellectual or educational level to become mothers.

They are all choices they may regret at some point. If a Demeter woman can understand that her urge to become a mother is driven from her unconscious and that she still has enough time to become a mother under much more favorable circumstances if she waits until she has completed her education, has some work experience or sufficient income to give her child everything it needs, 

Looking beyond motherhood

A Demeter woman will have to accept that other women interpret motherhood differently. In particular, women who are under the influence of the virgin goddess archetypes will feel just as bad as a Demeter woman who is obstructed in her desire to have children when they drop their social ambitions.

And maybe a woman who doesn’t try to please her child in everything or teaches it to cope on its own strength, is carrying it with very valuable baggage.

In order not to fall into a hole when her children are adults, a Demeter woman has to think about how she will shape her life after motherhood and that means she must be open to the influence of other archetypes.

Sometimes this happens spontaneously when women notice that they have more time for themselves when the mother role ends. But sometimes that doesn’t work and she grieves because she can no longer be a mother. For her, the years her children were little will always be the best years of her life, but the years after that don’t have to be worthless.

Sometimes she continues the mother role in other activities, for example foster motherhood, volunteering or by working for a good cause. Sometimes she decides to change her life by re-entering the labor market, to develop creatively or spiritually. But the maternal streak of a Demeter woman will never completely disappear.

Many Demeter women end up in poverty when their marriages fail because they have not paid much attention to their work. They often feel guilty that they can’t give their children everything, but they also haven’t anticipated the possibility of being left alone.

By taking her work more seriously and considering it as a serious activity instead of ‘earning some extra money’, they can improve their own social position and that of their children as well. Precisely because she only wanted to be a mother, she was unable to sufficiently prepare her children for society, so that, for example, they graduate with a large student debt because there was never enough money for a study. Or because they grow up in poverty because she is a single mother after a divorce and there are problems with alimony.

As a mother, you may want to be with your children permanently, but if the consequence is that there is only a hot meal three times a week and they have to go to school in worn-out sneakers in winter because there is no money for decent shoes, shoot have you not passed your goal? A Demeter woman sometimes over-identifies with the emotionally-affective side of motherhood and can’t focus enough on the material side. To raise children, love alone is not enough and sometimes one just has to work hard to meet the material demands.

Taking into account relevant work experience, opportunities to grow and ensure that her resume is attractive to an employer, she can save herself and her children a lot of trouble. She may feel that motherhood is a lifelong, serious ‘job’ for a woman, but the social reality is different. Devoting oneself completely to motherhood may be a personal choice, but socially it is by no means a safe choice.

And she should at least let that sink in and make a conscious choice so that she can fully support the consequences. If she really cares about motherhood so much that she’s willing to live on little money if she becomes a single mother, then that’s her choice. But if it hits her because she’s never thought about it, it’s a problem.son-child-motherra

Letting go of ‘mother compulsion’

A Demeter mother’s perception of motherhood is shaped in large part by her own high demands and expectations and is nurtured and maintained by women with the same ‘complex’ as herself. If mothers mainly hang out with ‘women like themselves’, they can find themselves in a negative spiral of subcutaneous competition for the best mother and fear of falling short in the eyes of others.

She tries to be a human ‘horn of plenty’ for her children. But a woman cannot embody a goddess. She is a human being with all the shortcomings that come with it and that also means that she will make mistakes in raising her children. She has not failed as a person. She has put her heart and soul into her children and that is enough.

Help from other goddesses

A Demeter woman can learn from Artemis to prioritize what is important to her and what gives her energy. This is important to keep you going during the busy period when the children are small. She can learn from Athena that you can’t and don’t have to please everyone and that there are other things that are important than the worries of the family. She can learn from Hestia to care for others in a more detached way.

You can take care of another out of the desire to bring light to the world and not to feel appreciated. She can learn from Hera to take the relationship with her husband more seriously and to take her husband more seriously. She can learn from Persephone not to feel responsible for everyone all the time. woman-sensual

The pre-patriarchal primordial essence

In her pure form Demeter embodies the Primal Mother, but also the wise Earth Woman who is naturally in the center and whose word is simply listened to. Demeter is the maternal matriarch who gives from the sheer joy of giving. This archetype has been held in high esteem from the dawn of mankind, as evidenced by the sheer amount of Mother Goddess figurines featuring pregnant bellies, full breasts, and an emphasis on birth and nature’s bounty. People just love mothers. 

The Patriarchal Wound

The patriarchal perversion of the Demeter archetype is its over-identification with motherhood, forgetting her role as a wise woman and ancestress. She can no longer use her wisdom in a consultative role for her people or family and under the patriarchy has started to channel all her energy into the mother role, which has therefore acquired something compulsive.

This can be in the form of the overprotective mother who keeps her children too close to her, the mother who wants to be perfect, the bed-ridden mother who pushes herself or the dominant mother who controls her children.

This twist has caused many problems. Many people carry with them traces of their childhood of a mother whose word was law in the negative sense. She decided what happened, instead of sensing from her earth-mother wisdom what was best for each individual.

During the transition from the matriarchal to patriarchal cultures, the wise mothers were directed from the center to the periphery and a monumental archetype like Demeter cannot of course be marginalized with impunity. The women who at first naturally ruled in a maternal way, in the new situation had to settle for the crumbs of influence that remained.

The broad influence that they previously exerted within the clan, they could suddenly only enjoy within their own family. The archetypal male image of Mother under the patriarchy is not a beneficent all-mother, but an imperious, domineering monster that suffocates and engulfs her children.

Whether that image is justified is another matter, and you might wonder to what extent those patriarchal men themselves had a part in that situation, but Demeter women have the need to be omnipresent, and if they are curtailed in that need, that can be a problem. viciously express. suddenly they could only enjoy themselves within their own family. The archetypal male image of Mother under the patriarchy is not a beneficent all-mother, but an imperious, domineering monster that suffocates and engulfs her children.

Whether that image is justified is another matter, and you might wonder to what extent those patriarchal men themselves had a part in that situation, but Demeter women have the need to be omnipresent, and if they are curtailed in that need, that can be a problem. viciously express. suddenly they could only enjoy themselves within their own family. The archetypal male image of Mother under the patriarchy is not a beneficent all-mother, but an imperious, domineering monster that suffocates and swallows her children.

Whether that image is justified is another matter, and you might wonder to what extent those patriarchal men themselves had a part in that situation, but Demeter women have the need to be omnipresent, and if they are curtailed in that need, that can be a problem. viciously express.

It is precisely by breaking away from the mother’s role and taking her social role and ambitions more seriously that the balance between mothering and a mediating and caring role in society can be restored. 

What would the goddess Demeter want to give you?

Cherish all life, it is the most beautiful manifestation of the divine on earth. As a female being, you are blessed with the ability to receive life, to grow, to give birth, to nurture and to guide you on your way to adulthood. Defend life and help it grow.”

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