Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)


I identify with & work with the Greek Gods quite a bit, mostly because of my heritage. However, Hera is a problem for me. Except in my wedding ceremony, I pretty much stay away from her. Her role in Greek mythology is problematic for me. I have found references to her as a positive & helpful goddess at times, but in the stories she is so often persecuting the women who had the misfortune of attracting Zeus & the children that inevitably resulted. To some degree I can understand a woman who is powerless to retaliate against her husband (as many ancient Greek women would find themselves) lashing out against the people she could blame. But that doesn't work for me as a protector of marriage or patron of childbearing-age women. Does anyone have any insight to this goddess that reconciles her actions in the myths?

Answer Question

Asked by nysa00 at 1:19 PM on Sep. 10, 2009 in Religion & Beliefs

Level 4 (36 Credits)
Answers (6)
  • No, but, there are similar issues within our pantheon. I think it just calls for a different perspective. Rather than thinking there must be something to aspire to within each god, consider what there is to learn from them. There's a book in the Eddas called Lokasenna where Loki goes all Harper Valley PTA on the gods, pointing out every fault they have, and it brings out they they all have flaws, just some are easier to ignore than others. If you can't find much good in Hera, think about what you can learn from the bad.

    Answer by NotPanicking at 1:34 PM on Sep. 10, 2009

  • I agree wtih NotPanicking.
    And on that same note, just because she is in your Pantheon, does not mean you must use her for ritual etc.
    My Patron God, is in the Greek pantheon, he is the God of war...does this mean I strive to carry ahead on a pike etc. No, but it keeps me strong.

    I have used Hel (norse pantheon) for ritual for inner reflection. She scared the crap out of me, but what she showed me, was what I needed to see. (when i was on a very self destructive path).
    I agree with learning from the bad.

    Answer by Princessofscots at 2:52 PM on Sep. 10, 2009

  • I think perhaps in some of the myths you have humans trying to figure out where their own feelings and so they projected those onto their god/goddess...I think of her more as a patron of the scorned woman; than of a healthy marriage...but that's just my intrepretations of myths...if I were looking for a patron goddess in the Greek pantheon; I'd be more inclined to look at Athena.

    Answer by Anonymous at 3:42 PM on Sep. 10, 2009

  • Put yourself in hera's shoes. You are the goddess of marriage and fidelity and your own husband is the king of cheaters. Hera would have been called upon in the day to defend women against cheaters. She was doing her job even in her own marriage. Back then divorce was not good for women. It was better to find a way to get the other woman out of the picture bc divorced women did not fare well in that time. Hera set the example in her own marriage, which is not neccesarily bad

    Answer by NightOwlMama at 4:44 PM on Sep. 10, 2009

  • Just take a look at the Q&A in Relationships and all the "he's cheating" questions. I see a lot of Hera like woman in that section. As to protecting marriage, perhaps its really more of protection the wife's own interests instead of protecting a marriage. But if marriage is just a contract, you don't need any leaches either. I find Hera way too bitter for my tastes. LOL But then my own marriage isn't orthodox by any means. I don't have a need nor an urge to "defend and fight" off anyone.

    Answer by isabellalecour at 11:52 PM on Sep. 10, 2009

  • I think it was a question of power. Zeus had more than Hera had and she couldn't take her frustrations out on him. She tried once and he nearly killed her for it. So like any victim of spousal abuse, she tormented the offspring of his adultery as an alternative to being unable to punish him. Yes, it was petty and pointless. He still had all the power. The goddess Athena is my choice. She is one who epitomizes intelligence and strength to me.

    Answer by witchqueen at 1:06 PM on Sep. 11, 2009

Join CafeMom now to contribute your answer and become part of our community. It's free and takes just a minute.