Star of the Sea

Queen of Heaven

Aphrodite, Goddess of Love, the most beautiful of all the goddesses of Greece has an unusual origin.  She was born out of the penis of the sky when it fell into the sea. The penis in question belonged to Ouranos, the deity who was the personified sky, and it landed in the ocean not at all by chance. It was cut off by his son Cronus, who subsequently became the ruler of all things. (Cronus would later be deposed by his own son Zeus.) Leave it to the ancient Greeks to add an element of disturbing violence to an otherwise perfect metaphor.  Take out the dis-membering aspect, however, and we are left with a gorgeous image of feminine beauty, power, and love rising out of the sea.  In Botticelli’s archetypal image of the scene she sails to the shore of Cyprus upon a clam shell. But if her birth is…

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