On March 23rd, 2023, Pluto entered the sign of Aquarius for the first time after a long stay in Capricorn. As my curiosity was piqued, I embarked on a little trip into cold celestial bodies. I quickly found myself in the land of the Roman and Greek gods while researching the stars.
Greek and Roman mythology portray Pluto and Hades as gods of the underworld. Both the Roman and the Greek rulers of the underworld were driven by the same deep desire: The Roman Pluto, a brother of Zeus, wanted Proserpina and the Greek Hades asked Zeus to mediate a conversation with Persephone’s mother, since he planned to marry her daughter. Due to Zeus’ knowledge that Demeter would not freely give her daughter in marriage to the god of the underworld, he had no interest to intervene in all these matters. Zeus shrugged his shoulders, explaining to his brother that he could take Persephone without Demeter’s approval. As the societal structures of the time changed, so did the well-known prehistory, resulting in much of it being altered from its original form.
Known as a daughter of Zeus and Demeter, Persephone plays a prominent role in Greek mythology. Ancient Greek mystery cults celebrated Persephone’s return to the upper world as a symbol of nature’s reawakening. There exists a great deal of mystery surrounding ancient civilizations, whose practices date back to 1500 B.C. Chr. These ceremonies revolved around three central themes: descent and fall, sacrifice and fasting, transformation and the return of light and new life. Ancient fertility cults were brought to Greece via Crete, from Egypt. It is assumed they were associated with the goddesses Isis and Gaia. Sacred stories of mother and daughter have existed long before the Judeo-Christian idea of a divine father and son.
In Greek mythology, Persephone or Kore, the daughter of Demeter, symbolizes the new blooming of the harvest. It was during the fall of the year that only women in early Greece observed this significant ceremonial fertility ritual. Eventually, the cult reached Rome via Sicily, where Demeter and Persephone were worshipped as Ceres and Proserpina.
Originally known as Kore in her early stages of development, Persephone represents the youthful, vivacious, and enchanting goddess of spring. Demeter, her mother, loved and protected her until Hades, Persephone’s uncle and ruler of the underworld, abducted her and brought her to his domain. Note that no reference to rape or kidnapping is found in the original cult of Demeter and her daughter, nor in the traditions that preceded their mythology. This element was only present in the Olympic version of the myth introduced later in history. As recounted in the Homeric Hymn to Demeter, a story dating back to the seventh century BC, Persephone was abducted into the underworld and subsequently forced into union with Hades.
The portrayal of Persephone as a kidnapped and raped victim is a dominant interpretation in her transformation, but it is believed that it only gained popularity after the shift from a matriarchal society to a patriarchal society occurred. Historical records indicate that violence and rape were not part of the original story.