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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in breast

Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Breast Is Best: Minoan Mother Goddess Imagery

All those topless women in Minoan art played a major role in the popularity of Minoan archaeology during the early 20th century, when the cities of Bronze Age Crete were being uncovered for the first time in over 3,000 years. They were quite racy for the Edwardian era, being considered almost pornographic back then.

But to the Minoans, they were sacred.

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Scene: Department store, Women's Wear

Brassiere display, two racks side-by-side.

Sign on first rack:

Bras for Cowans

(Shows regular two-cup brassieres.)

Sign on second rack:

Bras for Witches

(Shows bras with three, four, and five cups.)

 

You know about witches' nipples: we've got extra. All the better to feed our familiars with, they say.

Polymastia: the condition of having extra breasts. Some years back, I gave a workshop on the subject at a local festival. My plan was to discuss the lore from the trials. I hadn't expected the workshop to turn into a show-and-tell. Turns out, some witches actually do have extras. That's just how some bodies are made, although of course in this particular instance we do have to factor in a certain self-selecting demographic.

In the minds of the Hunters, of course, a witch's polymastia made her something less than human. Humans have two nipples; animals have many. The witch's extra nipples demonstrate her essentially bestial nature.

Still, I can't quite help but think of Many-Breasted Artemis of Ephesus: Goddess of Witches, She Who Feeds the World. Like Goddess, apparently, like votary.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 

 

Your words to me are as the milk of your breasts.

 

In many Wiccan circles, as—on the Goddess's behalf—the priestess recites The Charge of the Great Mother, it's customary for her to stand in the Star or Goddess position, with legs and arms spread wide. It's a posture of revelation and self-offering.

Well and good. But there's another liturgical possibility here, a very ancient one.

In Russian painter and mystic Nicholas Roerich's 1910 Idols (Pagan Russia), shown above, we see a depiction of a pre-Christian Slavic sanctuary featuring standing wooden images of various gods, surrounded by a temenos wall.

Let me call your attention to the second figure to the right. Clothed in a checkered skirt, the goddess here depicted cups her hands beneath her breasts.

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
A Mother's Love, Minoan Style

Whenever I check on my blog statistics, I always find that the post I wrote about topless Minoan women is the number one in terms of hits. The female breast is such a source of titillation (ha!) in modern society, it's hard to wrap our minds around the idea that exposed breasts might have represented something other than sexual innuendo to the ancient Minoans. But we're pretty sure they did.

In addition to the frescoes and figurines that show women with exposed breasts, Minoan art also includes quite a few representations of animals suckling their young. The image at the top of this blog is a drawing of a faience plaque found at Knossos. It shows a mama goat suckling a kid. There's a similar plaque with a cow and her calf. Images of mother animals suckling their young - cattle, goats, sheep, even deer - appear on a number of Minoan seals.

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Topless Minoan Women: Not What You Think

The modern Pagan world is awash in womb symbolism, and I can’t say I mind. After all, the feminine side of the divine has been almost entirely ignored by the major religions of the past few centuries. OK, millennia.

But the ancients didn’t always focus on the womb as the central symbol of the feminine, either divine or mundane. Take, for instance, the Minoans and their reverence for the breast.

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