XXXIX: An inglorious end—and promise


To those who may be receiving one of these post-notifications for the first time: This is not a blog; it’s actually part of a book, and will make little sense to you without knowledge of what has come before—which you can easily obtain, along with a goodly amount of satirical theatre as matters progress, by simply entering ttgftyri.org into your web browser, opening the menu, and starting at page one. J.J.


Scene 13

Then Papa sets some carpenters to building ships, assembles all of his spiritual sons who are old enough to fight but not yet old enough to have started a family, and forges them into a mighty navy specifically aimed at overwhelming the old Gamopolite capital!

“Now then, let us begin our crusade,” Papa cries as he finally climbs aboard his own ship and raises a fine, new bronze sword high overhead—just about the time that his second wife announces that she too is now pregnant—to seize control of all this from women as should be!”

And he promptly sets sail, past the cheers and tears of all those who are unfortunately unable to join in the certain glory of that.

* * *

And well, Papa’s force too has a flag—albeit one featuring a visage never before encountered in the most extravagant dreams of either human or animal!

Rather, here advancing upon the heart of the former Establishment is some fabulous creature with the feet of a bull, mane of a lion, wings of a hawk, and none other than Papa’s own head, now neatly crowned by a pair of intimately entwined eels, or ‘sea-serpents’.

Scene 14

But as Papa approaches the land of his youth, turns up the Gamopolite River, and soon disembarks on the city docks—all without incident—it occurs to him that about all he really faces out there at the moment is some highly uncharacteristic disorder!

For by now, old Gaim is so worn and spent that his grip on everything is rapidly loosening—with his people too now slipping back into chaos as all their old enmities have suddenly arisen from their own, supposedly long-buried remains.

With the proponents of the Serpent and Bird again circling each other suspiciously before the failing power center of it all, as each now seeks to position himself nearer the soon to be vacant throne.

With the planters and herders again savaging each other before their common shrine to Our Lady; and the herders even brawling among themselves as to whether the dying Gardener should maybe be re-conceived in popular lore as a Cowherd, Goatherd, or Shepherd.

With fakirs again laying claim to all the divine powers—and the more audacious among them now daring to peddle their wares within the very precincts of the Temple!

And quickly carving his way through this whole mess while his Crier reads his new scroll aloud from the Temple steps, Papa manages to arrive at his old adversary’s bedside just in time to provide a proper escort for his funeral procession.

* * *

Whence he too now finds him visiting that other shore—where he graciously orders his men to draw their swords and form an arch through which people’s latest Great Ancestor should now be returned to the Divine Womb: dust unto dust.

After which, he personally tamps down what certainly appears to be the last of the old Matriarchal Age and hurries back toward the river, lest he and his men be caught after dark in the spooky Land of Death.

But then as he reaches the bank, he’s startled to find his ships burning on the shore—and another army across the river determined to keep him right where he is!

So—there was going to be a war after all. And his men needn’t have bothered with their uniforms; because they aren’t going to have any trouble distinguishing themselves from these enemy warriors—they’re all women!

“Women,” his men stare alongside him at their waiting foe, “—but we can’t fight women!” For in their mind, the old mystique remains such that they can’t imagine themselves killing a woman—even one bent on killing them.

And so now Papa lines them up and seeks to straighten that out. “Alright, who among you thinks that you’re going to live forever?” he calmly asks.

And as he expected, no one so much as flinches.

“Well then, who among you is afraid to die?” he asks next.

But again, no one moves.

“So who assumes that they shall be received into the Sky-father’s paradise at death?” he continues.

And everyone immediately steps forward.

“Aha, I think I’ve found our problem!” Papa stares hard along the ranks. “Because I have it on the highest authority,” he suddenly roars, “that only those who would die with their boots on and a sword in their hand, destroying His enemies, will ultimately be admitted up into that glorious place; the other being reserved for women, children, and grown men who would cringe before woman like some infant afraid of being denied the teat!”

Scene 15

And swimming across, there is quickly enjoined the most savage battle yet known anywhere; while only Papa’s superior number enables him to force his way back onto the eastern shore—where he gradually turns the defenders back upriver, toward the original Sacred Mountain.

Atop which, he finally captures his opposite commander—who turns out to be none other than Dawn’s older sister, Gamia!

“Let me go!” she screams at the five strong men that it actually takes to restrain her. “I mean, it’s our Mountain, you son of a bitch—and our Tree, our Serpent, our Bird, Cross, everything!

“And so you can just go play with yourself,” she spits defiantly in the vicinity of Papa’s own procreative organ, “before I or any other woman will admit to any need for your precious weenie!”

* * *

And when Papa’s face finally returns to its normal color, he orders his men to cut down some token Tree; bind two of its stouter branches into a token Cross; affix the would-be Queen of Everything to it; and plant it on the mountaintop—that she might indeed have all she claimed.

“Hail, almighty Woman,” he mocks her as she hangs there and duly genuflects before her. “May the Good Old Days—as you would know them—be resurrected of your terrified piss.”

Then he turns back and goes to round up her remaining followers and ship them off to some remote island; while she yells after him, “You can kill me, but you can’t kill my spirit! I’ll be back; do you hear me, you—you ungrateful male mother-fucker: I’ll be back!”


So how did it really go—this male takeover thing?

_________________________

  • In Siberia, the Chukchee people used to worship a goddess named Cinei who ruled the sea; but after the male takeover, she was forced to become the wife of a new Sea-god, Peruten—of course, with an accompanying reduction in her power and local profile. (Lowchen Australia, Siberian Goddesses) http://www.lowchensaustralia.com/names/siberian-goddesses.htm and (GodFinder, Table of Gods) http://godfinder.org/index.html?q=Cinei#home
  • Not that all womenwhether goddesses or mere mortals—submitted willingly to this new idea of accepting a husband; or that their willingness even mattered. In ancient Romewhere there was a god or goddess for every part of life, down to the smallest detailthe goddess Virginiensis was made responsible for untying the girdle of the new bride; after which, the goddess Prema was tasked with holding her down on the bed, legs apart, as necessary; the god Subigus then helped make her completely submissive to her husband’s will; while the goddess Venus provided her with whatever passion that might be required to get her in the proper mood; of course, the god Priapus hastened to supply her husband with an erection; the goddess Pertuda made sure that there was actual penetration, and so forth. (Wikipedia, List of Fertility Deities, Roman) https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_fertility_deities
  • Among the indigenous peoples of South America, many of whom aren’t yet terribly far removed from the time when matriarchal rule was still the social norm, references to the male takeover survive to this day in the form of various myths and legends. (Suppressed History Archives, historian Max Dashú citing anthropologist John D. Monaghan, 2009) https://www.suppressedhistories.net/goddess/fdivsa.html
  • A few centuries ago, European mariners sailing around Cape Horn at the southern tip of South America, only six hundred miles from perpetually frozen Antartica, saw so many fires on the dozens of islands that they passed that they named the place Tierra del Fuego, the ‘Land of Fire’. For despite the frigid clime, the islands were inhabited by a few native peoples so thoroughly acclimated to the place that they actually walked around completely naked; slept in the open, completely unsheltered and unclothed while the fully clothed Europeans shivered under howsoever many blankets; swam in the extremely cold sea in search of shellfish and other edible marine life that they could capture with their bare hands; and were otherwise indifferent to the bitter cold and biting wind—although they did bother to cover themselves all over with animal grease, knew how to make and control a fire, used the few available rock formations to shelter themselves from the elements, and habitually rested by assuming a deep squatting position so as to reduce their surface area and thus conserve their own body heat. In other words, they were still living pretty much at the level of the Stone Age. (Wikipedia, Yaghan people) https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yaghan_people
  • The Yaghan were one of those peoples; and in their legends, they still recount how long ago, men killed the ruling women, including their leader, Húanaxu, in a bloody patriarchal coup; after which the furious Húanaxu rose into the sky, became the moon, and sent a great flood from the sea as punishment for their slaughter. (Suppressed History Archives, historian Max Dashú citing cultural anthropologist John D. Monaghan, 2009) https://www.suppressedhistories.net/goddess/fdivsa.html
  • The neighboring Selk’nam, a nomadic hunting people who similarly went about at most, skimpily clad, told visiting anthropologists that once, a powerful shamaness named Kreeh, who ‘d led the women’s council, had been overthrown along with the rest of the council by the men—who nonetheless continued to fear her, since after being driven from the earth, she’d simply taken over the moon. (Suppressed History Archives, historian Max Dashú citing Chapman, pp. 67-73) https://www.suppressedhistories.net/goddess/fdivsa.html
  • Further north, in the Gran Chaco, the Chamacoco report that the male overthrow actually went so far as to kill all the female deities. Only, their own great goddess Aishnawerhta managed to regenerate herself and angrily avenge her sex. The Chamacoco—who over the years, have killed or driven off missionaries of every stripe, and in fact have recently accepted government relocation precisely so that they might be left alone to continue their traditional ways—revere Aishnawerhta, who they describe as all-knowing, present everywhere, beyond time itself, and as their Great Teacher whose wise Words and Laws brought them their traditional culture. (Suppressed History Archives, historian Max Dashú citing anthropologist Edgardo J. Cordeau, pp. 268-70) https://www.suppressedhistories.net/goddess/fdivsa.html
  • Then, how could anyone have killed her? The men claim that it was actually done at her own instruction, because she felt guilty about the fact that for centuries women had looked down on men and tricked them; and so the goddess had revealed to her chieftain lover how to kill her and all her kind just by striking “the mouths hidden in the hair on their left ankles”. (Suppressed History Archives, historian Max Dashú citing anthropologist Arturo Escobar, pp. 30-5, and Edgardo J. Cordeau, p. 268) https://www.suppressedhistories.net/goddess/fdivsa.html
  • When Christian missionaries first encountered West Africa’s 4.5-million Fon people and found them already patrilineal, they figured that if push came to shove in their attempt to convert them, it would be easy enough to just re-interpret the Fon mythologies within the patrilineal Abrahamatic framework, and with the two thus synchronized, maneuver the Fon into adopting the new religion. After all, they’d already used that tactic successfully on numerous other peoples around the world. But to their dismay, the Fon priests turned the tables and simply re-interpreted the Abrahamic myths into their own religious framework. (Wikipedia, Fon People, Religion) https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fon_people
  • In the Fon’s framework, imparted orally from one generation to the next since ancient times, the goddess Nana Buluku is the Supreme Being and ultimate source of the universe; although it’s said that after creating it, she retired, leaving the task of creating all that the universe would eventually contain to her hermaphrodtic child, perceived as the aforementioned Moon-goddess Mawu and her twin brother, the Sun-god Lisa—although in the myth, Mawu does most of the work. (Wikipedia, Fon People, Religion) https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fon_people
  • While the various peoples of West Africa all have their own languages, it’s worth noting here that most of these belong to the Gbe group within the Niger-Congo linguistic family—indicating that they were once a single people with a single culture; much as, say, English is one of the West Germanic languages within the Indo-European family. And so we shouldn’t be surprised to learn that despite their disparate tongues, most West Africans revere Nana Buluku as the primordial Mother-goddess—notwithstanding that in some Gbe languages, such as the one spoken by the Fon, she’s known as Nana Bukuulu, or in some Fon dialects, as Nana Bukuu; by the Akan of Ghana as Nana Buruku; by the Yoruban and Igbo peoples of Nigeria as Nana Kuruku and Olisabuluwa respectively, and so forth; while the rest have come to focus on Mawu-Lisa as the only one who really matters now—with Mawu getting all the worship, and Lisa mentioned today only inasmuch as he happens to be linked to her in name. Which brings us to . . .
  • The Ewe, another West African people numbering in the millions, who have recently come up with a very different version of all this: for as they would now have it, Mawu is actually the male and as such, should heneforth be perceived as a creator along the lines of the Christian God. Now how do you suppose all that came about? If you need a hint, you should also know that in some villages, the Ewe’s more manipulable priests have even given ‘him’ a second name: Yehowa. (Face2Africa, Nana Buluku, the revered goddess and . . . ) https://face2faceafrica.com/article/nana-buluku-the-revered-goddess-and-supreme-deity-of-west-africa-and-the-caribbean (Wikipedia, Mawu) https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mawu
  • Across the continent, in northeastern Africa, the Kafa people of Ethiopia used to have a fertility goddess named Atete who was the subject of an ancient, annual, rite in which women would collect various plants sacred to her and throw them in a local river. The rite is still performed; but since their conversion to Christianity and the assimilation of Atete’s cult into that of the Virgin Mary, it has come to be called Astar yo Mariam, in Kafa, ‘the Epiphany of Mary‘. (Wikipedia, Atete) https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atete
  • In ancient Persia, a mostly arid land today known as Iran, (from its original Indo-European name, ‘Ariana’, a land ruled by the Aryans), the oldest and most worshipped nature deities were those associated with water in all its forms, or the Āpas (‘Waters’)—in the language of that day, a feminine noun, since all of the Āpas were female. The Āpas actually personified rain, rivers, streams, lakes, springs, wells, pools, mist, droplets, dew, really just any kind of moisture—while by far the most popular and widely revered of these was Aredvi Sura Anahita, ‘Moisture Mighty and Pure’, who over a period of time came to represent the very spirit or ‘essence’ of water; through her association with water, healing; and due to her ability to heal, wisdom. At her height, Anahita, as she’s commonly referred to today, had more temples and shrines dedicated to her than any other Persian goddess—even after the rise of Zoroastrianism in the region, which left no room for any Creator other than its own, male Ahura Mazda. According to Zoroastrianism’s founder Zoroaster, Ahura Mazda generated all of the lesser deities out of his own essence, thus making all the ancient gods and goddesses his children—meaning that the priests and priestesses of Anahita, among others, could no longer act as independently as they had before, but would now be subject to the approval of Ahura Mazda’s. Nonetheless, reverence for water has remained so deeply ingrained in the Persian psyche that even many Zoroastrians continue to make offerings to their back yard well or some nearby stream in the name of Anahita; while her remaining worshippers continue to visit her temples in Zoroastrian communities everywhere, seeking her divine support and counsel to this day. (Wikipedia, Anahita) https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anahita and (Wikipedia, Aban) https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aban
  • According to the ancient Sumerians, in the Beginning the goddess Nammu, in the form of the primeval sea, gave birth to the sky and earth—or to quote directly from the An-Anum, a cuneiform list of the Sumerian deities that eventually came to be accepted throughout the ancient Mediterranean world, she was the “mother who gave birth to the heavens and the earth.” And here we must note, in view of what follows, that no male deity is mentioned on this list—or anywhere else in the Mediterranean records of that day—in connection with that event. (Ancient Mesopotamian Gods and Goddesses, Nammu) http://oracc.museum.upenn.edu/amgg/listofdeities/namma/index.html
  • And then, in the Sumerian poem Enki and Ninmah, written later, she’s also described as the “original mother who gave birth to [all of] the gods in the universe”—again, according her primary status among the deities. (Ancient Mesopotamian Gods and Goddesses, Nammu) http://oracc.museum.upenn.edu/amgg/listofdeities/namma/index.html and (Wikipedia, Nammu) https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nammu
  • But in the subsequent creation story of the Babylonians, the Enûma eliš—generally found to date from no more than four thousand years ago—Nammu gradually fades in importance throughout the region as her role as the primordial sea in the story is taken over by the Babylonian goddess Tiamat; only, in the Enûma, Tiamat is but one of two primeval seas—and the other, Abzu, is her male consort in creating the world and all its deities; which the two bodies of water—hers salty, and his of the drinkable kind—accomplish by simply, well, “mingling”. Obviously, the fact that in the Sumerian story, the Creatrix needed no male partner, while in the later, Babylonian version she did, would be of great interest to us here. (Wikipedia, Enûma Eliš) https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/En%C3%BBma_Eli%C5%A1
  • And in the Enûma, another important, pivotal fact is that while at the beginning of the story, the Babylonian myth-maker portrays Tiamat as a positive, mother-like figure, as the story progresses, he gradually turns her into a monstrous root of all chaos who must be killed; which is subsequently handled by the heroic god Marduk—who finally splits her body in two, thereby creating heaven and earth from her torso, rivers from her eyes, mountains from her breasts, and so forth, before going on to become the ‘King of All the Deities’, and then of course, ultimately the divine patron and protector of Babylon itself. (Ancient Mesopotamian Gods and Goddesses, Tiamat) http://oracc.museum.upenn.edu/amgg/listofdeities/tiamat/index.html
  • In Brahmanic Hinduism, which holds that an all-pervasive female energy powers the universe and empowers everything in it, every god is believed to include a portion of that, or his own shakti—else he would have no power whatsoever. For instance, in the Hindu’s holy trimurti (‘trinity’), the divine shakti of Brahma, the god who continually creates the new, is Brahmani; while that of Vishnu, the god who for as long as possible sustains what has been created, Vaishnavi; and that of the aforementioned Shiva, the god who necessarily destroys what is old in order to make room for the new, Maheshvari—inasmuch as in one of Shiva’s own aspects, he’s also known as Maheshvara. And the point here? Well, these and the shaktis of four other major Hindu gods comprise the widely revered Saptamataras, or the ‘seven mothers’—one of whom, Badi Mata, eventually fell out of favor and is now described as being of evil intent, especially towards children who might otherwise be inclined to seek her maternal protection. (Wikipedia, Shakti) https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shakti and (Wikipedia, Saptamataras) https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matrikas
  • The Japanese Kojiki, or ‘Record of Ancient Matters’, a traditional, orally transmitted history committed to writing at the request of the Empress Genmei early in the eighth century and believed to be the oldest surviving Japanese literary work of any kind, contains the story of the creation of the Japanese islands, people, and their current gods and ways by the divine pair Izanagi and his sister Izanami. And so does the Nihon Shoki, ‘The Chronicles of Japan’, commissioned by Japan’s fortieth Emperor, Tenmu, during the previous century and finally completed under the editorial supervision of his son Prince Toneri some twenty-four years after his death and fully eight years after the presentation to the imperial court of the by-then well established Kojiki. But the two stories appear to differ in at least one glaring way. In the Kojiki, Izanami dies from terrible burns that she received while giving birth to the fire god and passes into the Underworld; whereupon Izanagi pursues her there, hoping to help her escape—but upon seeing her blackened, rotting corpse, he flees back to the world of the living, where he promptly purifies himself by ritualistic bathing, and in doing so creates—that is, ‘gives birth’, from his two eyes and his nose, no woman necessary—the three most important Japanese deities: Amaterasu, Tsukiyomi, and Susanoo. While in the Nihon Shoki, these deities are said to have already been created by the divine couple prior to Izanami’s great tragedy; and so now, apparently no longer in need of a wife, Izanagi doesn’t pursue her into the Underworld at all, but simply retires to a temple on the island of Awaji. Hm, perhaps the stories aren’t that different after all. (Wikipedia, Izanami) https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Izanami, (Wikipedia, Kojiki) https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kojiki and (Wikipedia, Nihon Shoki) https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nihon_Shoki

If you find the element of brother-sister incest in the Japanese story somewhat disturbing, you might consider the following.

First of all, in most, if not all cultures, the recognition of the relationship between copulation and conception appears to have been immediately followed by the idea that as with all other human activities, sexual activity should be carefully regulated by those who wished to avoid displeasing the Ultimate One, if only by bringing it into line with the natural ways of the world as then understood; while the gods themselves should set the example.

For instance, since the discovery of the fact that without the assistance of a male, the female couldn’t create anything at all, most of the old female cults, such as, say, those whose Mother-goddess had long been associated with the sea—and of course, who was believed to create the fish upon which her children routinely sustained themselves—had suddenly found themselves looking to merge with one of the new, male cults whose own god might now be claiming dominion over the sea; while under the circumstances—the two having arisen from the very same place in mind and all—the myth-makers of the day naturally came to present them, in spirit at least, as ‘brother and sister’, or this divine pair who having properly married, now cohabited in the sea and actually created all those fish together.

And so it was in Japan, whose ancient Creation story as recorded in the Kojiki has it that Izanagi and Izanami were actually but the seventh divine brother-sister pair directed to help with the creation of the world; that is, the world having been started by an Original Pair long before them, and the earth having already been created—albeit at present, still covered with water—their task as assigned by the older kami, or gods was just to create the Japanese islands, people, and their deities; and meanwhile, the myth-makers would have them teach people by example how to behave properly, perform all the required ceremonies, and so forth.

For instance, both the Kojiki and the Nihon Shoki report that when the divine pair went to marry by ceremoniously approaching each other from opposite directions around the ‘Pillar of Heaven’, Izanami was the first to speak; after which, they completed the marriage ceremony and only then, mated—but then, produced a grotesquely deformed child; which they promptly set asea alone in a boat, to die as it would.

Then they asked the older generation of gods what they’d done wrong. And you’ve probably already guessed their answer: Izanami shouldn’t have been the first to speak; the man should have been allowed—must always be allowed—to speak first!

And so they went through the marriage ceremony again—this time, in the proper manner—and went on to conceive many healthy offspring. Example accomplished. (Wikipedia, Japanese Mythology https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_mythology)

And second of all, the Japanese are scarcely the only people whose Creation story centers on an incestuous relationship, but are one of many peoples whose Creation stories and general tales of the ancient gods speak with little or no concern of such a Beginning.

For instance, you might be interested to find out, if you don’t already know, that in the Ancient Greek story of Creation, the Original Mother, or Earth-mother Gaia gave birth to a son, Uranus, who became the Sky god; and when he was sufficiently grown, she mated with him, eventually producing twelve children—six gods: Oceanus, Coeus, Crius, Hyperion, Lapeteus, and Cronus, and six goddesses, Theia, Rhea, Themis, Mnemosyne, Phoebe, and Tethys—comprising a group known as the Titans.

Mother-son incest too, you might shriek? Well you see, at first people imagined that in the Beginning, the Great Mother alone existed; and their stories of Creation reflect that—in some quarters, still reflect that; same as the Bible would have you believe about Yahweh—but after people made the connection between babies and sex, those stories needed to be updated.

So okay—but how, without coming up with a completely different story that might ultimately upset the whole apple cart? The myth-makers’ answer: the Great Mother would have to be seen as bearing a male child with whom she’d eventually have to copulate in order to get things moving. Hey, how else was she supposed to do it?

And so we come upon the ancient story of Gaia and Uranus—and for that matter, their daughter Rhea and her own son Zeus, Egypt’s Isis and her son Horus, Phrygia’s Cybele and her son Attis, the Muisica Colombians’ Bachué and her never-named son, et al

And then, the Greeks, as with the Japanese, told of more than one generation of gods that became entangled in this ‘incest’ trap. For the twelve children of Gaia and Uranus themselves are said to have subsequently paired off, with the youngest, Cronus, mating with one of his older sisters, Rhea—thus mirroring the fact that the woman that his father Uranus had mated with had been older than he—ultimately producing, in the order of their birth, the three goddesses Hestia, Demeter, and Hera, and the gods Hades, Poseidon, and Zeus.

Who in turn, also paired off, with the youngest, Zeus, marrying his older sister, Hera—although it would appear that right about here, the myth-makers decided to liven up all this boring, repetitive stuff a bit by reporting that soon after his marriage, Zeus bedded his other sisters as well; perhaps most notably the agricultural goddess Demeter, with whom he not only begat a daughter, Persephone, but with her—his daughter— eventually fathered the wine god Dionysus.

Scarcely to mention that by an earlier wife, Dione—a daughter of the Titan pair Oceanus and Tethys, and thus his cousin—some held him to be the father of Aphrodite; by another cousin, Leto—this time a daughter of Coeus and Phoebe—the father of the twins Artemis and Apollo; by Maia, the principal star of the Pleiades, the god Hermes; oh, and by his wife Hera, the warrior god Ares and lame god of the forge Haephestus; while from his own mind was said to have sprung, armed to the teeth with weapons and wisdom, the fully grown war goddess Athena.

And so it came to pass that his daughter Aphrodite dutifully married her half-brother Haephestus; but then to the delight of the myth-makers’ followers—who were beginning to find this new generation of gods most entertaining, if only because they reminded them so much of people themselves—Aphrodite, as the very embodiment of sexual desire, also took many lovers, in her case both divine and human: at various times being linked to another half-brother, Ares, by whom she was said to have seven children; less so to her half-brothers Poseidon, by whom she only had two, and Hermes, one; to her nephew Dionysus, by whom she had another five; and to the mortals Anchise, by whom she had one more, and by Adonis, alas, none. Ironically, she never had any by her husband—probably because she was never able to find time to squeeze him in. Oh, and did we mention that together with her half-sisters Athena and Hera, whom she happened to humiliate one day by being judged more beautiful than they, she helped start the Trojan War?

Anyway, Zeus’ seven children, together with Zeus himself, Hera, and their remaining brothers and sisters—save only Hades, whose divine responsibility was looking after the subterranean world of the dead and so was often said to prefer living there; and Hestia, inasmuch as some ancient Greeks reported that she’d eventually turned her seat at the divine council over to Dionysus, if only to keep the peace—comprised the twelve Olympian gods, so called because they were held to dwell atop Mt. Olympus. (Wikipedia, Greek https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Incest_in_folklore_and_mythology)

We might also note in passing that in no particular order, the ancient Dogon, Ugandan, Sudanese, Berber, Egyptian, Yemeni, Sumerian, Iraqi, Iranian, Indian, Indonesian, Thai, Vietnamese, Chinese, Taiwanese, Korean, Philippino, Hawaiian, Yaghan, Incan, Mexican, numerous Native American peoples, the Inuit, Icelandic, Norse, Irish, British, French, Germanic, Estonian, Ukranian, and Russian peoples are all found to have stories of incestuous Beginnings—with the rule of thumb being that those believing that it had all started with a single Personage typically went on to imagine a Divine Mother-Son incest, or more rarely, Father-Daughter; while those starting with a Divine Pair from the outset usually described them as Brother and Sister.

And finally, it should be noted that while virtually every known society past and present has prohibited both sibling and parent-child incest among its ordinary citizens, some ruling families who claimed to be divine or at least representatives of the divine—and were actually worshipped as such by their people—are on record as having believed themselves priveleged to practice any form of incest that they might fancy, ‘same as the other gods’; but more commonly, ruling houses such as the ancient Egyptian, Incan, Hawaiian, and Thai came to view brother-sister incest as simply the most effective way of keeping their royal blood line pure and ensuring that all of their power and wealth would remain within the family. (Wikipedia https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Incest_in_folklore_and_mythology) (National Geographic https://www.nationalgeographict.com/magazine/2010/09/tut-dna-dobbs/) (Zireal07 https://zireael07.wordpress.com/2011/12/17/incest-in-myths/)

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