Beyond Venus, these goddesses speak to different aspects of your inner divine.
When Demelza Fox dances she embodies the Goddess in every move. Whether dressed for a Burlesque-inspired number or employing flowy scarves and beautiful headdresses for a sacred temple dance, she moves with passion, sensuality, and confidence. Fully present in her body and loving it, it’s no wonder that this temple dancer and spiritual teacher embraces Venus, the Roman goddess of love, as one of her divine guides.
Fox is founder of Rockstar Priestess, a company designed to help women get in touch with their own path of goddess spirituality. A popular program is called “The Venus Working,” in which participants have a chance to immerse in “pleasure, delight, sensuality, and magic.”
Venus is indeed one of the most famous goddesses on the planet―and presides over her very own planet―but there are many other ancient goddesses (and contemporary priestesses who honor them) who can help us all connect with our own inner enchantress.
Which Goddess Fits Your Needs and Mood?
1. Hathor: See Yourself in a Mirror of Self-Love
Hathor is the Egyptian goddess of love, beauty, and pleasure, and a guardian of women. She is a fiery solar deity. A favorite among both common folk and royalty, her religion was considered joyful. Women in ancient Egypt often had mirrors of Hathor. The handle was sculpted in the image of the goddess, with the horns of her headpiece rising to hold the glass; the round mirror was her sun disk.
How to invoke her: The most important relationship you will ever have is your relationship with yourself, and Hathor can help you see how beautiful you truly are. It begins within. Get a beautiful mirror and designate it and bless it as your mirror of Hathor and self-appreciation. Look at it every morning, gaze into your own eyes, and smile at yourself. Anytime you need a little extra encouragement, take out your mirror and speak a Hathor mantra.
Enchantress Mantra: I am divine. I am beauty. I am love. I am a magnificent being. I am a goddess.
[Read: “16 Body-Love Affirmations.”]
2. Radha: Awaken Your Holy Enchantress
In the Hindu tradition, Radha is the Gopi, or cowherdess, who is said to be the most devoted and adored companion of the great avatar Krishna. It is said she left her home and family to fulfill her destiny with Krishna, as he did to be with her. She represents soulful love and ecstatic union. The Gita Govinda is the famous and beautiful epic Indian poem that tells of Krishna and Radha’s longing for one another.
How to invoke her: Find a sacred image in which these two are looking deeply into one another’s eyes. This is Divine love in action. Gaze at it during meditation and let it mesmerize you into feeling that profound, holy love is possible.
Enchantress mantra: I am cherished, loved, honored, and adored in all ways.
3. Oshun: Let Your Sensual Side Come Out to Play
Oshun is the Yoruban goddess of rivers and an orisha, or spirit that sustains life. She is seen as the proprietress of sweet, flowing waters. Her worship is widespread, including in the United States, Brazil, Cuba, Africa, Haiti, and beyond. As a major love goddess, she is prayed to for real and lasting love, good marriages, a peaceful home life, and healthy babies.
How to invoke her: Dance! In Nigeria she is honored with the Oshun festival, where in one event, the women dance in her honor, hoping to be her favorite. It’s said that when the goddess enters a woman, the woman dances wildly yet fluidly. Pick a time when you will not be disturbed, put on sensual music, and move your body to the beat of music that makes you feel excited. Dedicate your dance to Oshun.
Enchantress mantra: I am a beautiful, sensual goddess and I love being in my own body.
4. Ishtar: Give Yourself Permission to Be Passionate
Ishtar, the ancient Babylonian goddess, was associated with love, sexuality, fertility, and battle, as well as the planet Venus. She is known for her iconic trip to the underworld and as the partner of Tammuz. But she also was said to have multiple liaisons and little restraint in love and war.
Annabel Du Boulay, an international teacher, author, and scholar of the Rose Lineage and founder of the Avalon Rose Chapel, is an expert on ancient goddesses. She says Ishtar embodies both the love and loss side of relationships and gives us permission to explore our edges. “Ishtar teaches us to be completely free and unashamed in our full expression of all aspects of love, sexuality, and gender,” says Du Boulay. “She encourages us to tear down any internalized and external boundaries to this inherent freedom, to follow the primal love in our heart and passion in our body.”
How to invoke her: Du Boulay suggests we see ourselves as unique, free, beings who deserve love, passion, sexuality, and sensuality. “Meditate on the traditional image of Ishtar cupping her naked breasts, call her into your heart and sacral chakra, and simply allow whatever thoughts, feelings, images, and fantasies want to arise without judgment,” she says. “Let her lead you on a journey to experience your inner Lover at a deeper, more embodied, and freer level.”
Enchantress Mantra: I give myself permission to express my sexuality in any way that is right for me.
5. Rhiannon: Call Forth the Sovereign Goddess Within
Rhiannon is a Celtic goddess of love and sacred sexuality who is also known as the Great Queen. She hails from the Welsh tradition, and medieval literature describes her as smart, strategic, strong, brave, and generous. She is often seen on a pale horse, and her story includes trauma, betrayal, and treachery.
“Her mythology is full of rich teachings on how to navigate structures [that have power over women] without falling into the entrapments of those patterns, and on how to transform the wounding of not good enough,” says Katinka Soetens. She’s a leading expert on Rhiannon, the founder of the Path of Love Mystery School, and co-organizer of the Glastonbury Goddess Conference. “As a Celtic Sovereign Goddess, she chooses her partners or lovers freely, and remains entirely authentic, regardless of challenges, adversities, rewards, or approval.”
How to invoke her: Rhiannon urges us to explore and own our shadow parts and our shining parts, says Soetens. Through attaining self-knowledge, creating healthy boundaries, and knowing the truth of our hearts, she can help evolve the sacred sexual goddess within. Connect with Rhiannon by lighting a red candle and asking her to illuminate your path, to bless your heart’s truth and desire, and to help you remember that you, too, are a sovereign Queen.
[Read: “Claiming Your Queen.”]
Enchantress Mantra: I choose my heart’s desire and honor my right to walk the path of love and life as queen of my own domain.
6. Freya: Own Your Sexual Power
Freya is the Norse goddess of love and fertility, who hails from the family of deities known as Vanir. As the leader of the Valkyries, she chooses which warriors die in battle and then escorts them to the other side. Her residence is a beautiful palace called Folkvang (“field of folk”), a place where love songs are always in the air. She is considered to be a divine female of raw sensuality and vigorous passions—a vixen who is not shy about expressing herself. She is identified strongly with sexual freedom. Freya is affiliated with numerous partners and yet also loved her consort husband. She is often pictured riding naked—or clothed in a sensual pose—in a chariot pulled by two cats or by her “battle boar,” who some say is her human lover in disguise.
How to invoke her: When Freya wears her precious magical necklace that is a prized and magical possession, her allure intensifies, and people fall under her spell. Buy yourself a new Freya necklace and bless it with your intentions for a spicy love life and imagine it has magical powers to draw in your desires.
Enchantress Mantra: I magnetize love and passion through the natural expression of my feminine energy.
Continue the journey with “Eight Paths of the Goddess.”