I’m late posting this one and I haven’t posted anything else all week so I’m not doing so well as a blogger right now. However, at least it’s here!
She’s not one of my patron deities, she’s not a Goddess that even appears on my altar (though she should). But she is a goddess who I have a particular relationship with. In my religious practice I pay a lot of attention to personal gnosis as opposed to doing a lot of reading (and in some cases much at all), when it comes to Gods I have relationships with which aren’t clearly defined this is very much the case.
I think the first thing I ought to address is the obvious; ‘love’. After all Aphrodite is the greek goddess of love, first and foremost and I…have a weird relationship with love. I don’t like the modern notion of romantic love. My opinions may have changed and slid about over the years as I’ve amtured or whatnot but that one hasn’t changed, the common, socially accepted notion of what love is and what it means you should do – nope, don’t like it. And if you say that sort of thing loudly enough and vociferously enough you’re bound to get some attention. I fall in love remarkably easily, I used to think that this wasn’t the case but lets look at the facts, I have fallen in love with nine people over the years and I’m thirty years old, that’s someone new every one and a half years (assuming I started when I was sixteen), saying loudly enough that you don’t like love gets some attention and means you do rather have to re-assess your notions of what ‘love’ actually is.
Experiencing Aphrodite was not as mushy as it might have been, see I’ve been Disneyfied in my perceptions of her, this is the Goddess who was the result of a castration, genitalia hit the ocean and she was born, fully formed and with her own opinions and sexual drives. Shouldn’t that have given me a hint she wasn’t actually the pretty in pink romantic notion I had of her?
But I still kept on with my opinions of ‘love’, which were all about the socially acceptable (for 21st century anglicised western culture) idealised notions of monogamous romance.
Love is not the etiquette of traditional monogamous romance. Not by a long way and when I moved back to this country and through myself into a polyamorous relationship I threw myself headlong into Love. I invited Aphrodite to come on and bring it. My invitation was accepted. Love is emerging fully formed from the oily stain of human effluents on the water, it’s deep, cloudy and heart-expanding, it’s nasty, dirty and dark and it beats with blood that splashes everywhere at times.
Aphrodite is more than a goddess of love, although when you think about the actuality of love as opposed to the small romantic notion we’re taught to believe is love, maybe love is more than it seems. Her official remit is love, beauty, pleasure and procreation according to Wikipedia.
She’s a goddess of flow, she’s a goddess of the tides, her self, her essence is the beat of blood in the veins, and it rises and falls as the tides do, with a regular pulse that we can find and feel our way too. I love by instinct and that love is all encompassing as is hers, all ends and begins in pleasure and pain and that is the ocean in which we love.
She doesn’t give up either. She is in the undercurrent of every aspect of our lives and when you open yourself to her you become aware of how we live, strive, thrive and die in this sea of smothering, over-powering, caring, gentle, powerful love. It isn’t romance, that is so very far from who she is, it’s blood and sweat and an oceanic foam from which she springs, fully formed and with opinions born of the waves between us.
I live a life of love, and there should be a bloody, drumbeat of a space dedicated to Aphrodite upon my altar.