Saturday, January 7, 2012
Hygeia, Greek Goddess of Good Health
Hygeia is the Greek Goddess of health and cleanliness. She represented taking care of our bodies to prevent disease, as being clean was seen as an important aspect of staying healthy. The word hygiene even stems from her name. Daughter to Asclepius, God of Medicine, and Epione, Goddess of soothing pain, Hygeia was known for her healing abilities and promotion of cleanliness. She was depicted with a large snake wrapped around her body, drinking from a medicine bowl. It is said for a long time she was worshiped alongside her father, and didn't really become her own separate and independent Goddess until later in ancient history.
It was believed in the ancient world that disease could be prevented by personal and household cleanliness. As well as eating right and keeping your body healthy inside and out. Hygeia was called on for this purpose, along with her healing abilities. She believed in curing disease the natural way. Through the use of healing herbs, keeping a healthy diet, and staying in good physical shape. What's known as "the bowl of Hygeia", which is the bowl in which the snake drinks from, is a symbol that has been used as a representation of the pharmacological professional
Her worship was fairly widespread throughout Greece. In Arkadia, there was found in an ancient sanctuary, a relief which pictured Artemis, Hygeia and Asclepius. In the ancient city of Attica, on the Acropolis, a statue of Hygeia was found among statues of other Gods and Goddesses. There is also evidence of her worship in Olympia, among many other areas.
Call on Hygeia to help you stay healthy, and for help cleaning your home. Before you start your household chores, light a candle and some incense and call on Hygeia for her cleansing abilities to help you cleanse your home. Or pray to her if you want to start, or already are on a diet to help you stay focused on staying healthy.
On your altar to Hygeia, have colors of white, red and silver. Cleansing and healing herbs like eucalyptus, echinacea, chamomile. Healing crystals like quartz crystal, amethyst and amazonite., and a representation of snake. You may also choose to have healthy foods that are rich in vitamins such as apples, oranges and blurberries.
Enjoy your path to healing and good health with the ancient Goddess, Hygeia.
Photo courtesy of Gustav Klimt
Posted by Tara at 8:33 AM