I love to explore the Divine Feminine and write about Goddesses. For a list of those, click on the link: Goddesses. In order to become more balanced within ourselves and, through that, to bring greater balance and harmony to the world around us, we must find greater balance between the masculine and feminine energies within ourselves that each one of us possesses, regardless of physical gender or any other ways of self-identification.
Water, Wisdom & Healing
The Goddess Anahit takes us to Ancient Armenia which lay to the North of the old Persian empire. Today, modern Armenia is bordered by Turkey, Georgia, Azerbaijan and Iran to give you a rough idea where the Ancient Armenian people lived. This beautiful, yet mysterious Goddess called to me to write about her. That was a good thing because I might have given up and chosen another Goddess in her stead for lack of easily accessible information on the internet.
But rather than feeling frustrated and discarding this Goddess after doing many different online searches as well as going through many different books I own about Goddesses, I felt excited to uncover at least some of her secrets. And I also had to stop and think outside of the box, outside of my usual way of researching and writing about a deity.
For once, I remembered that I could also search in my native language, German, which usually gives less information than a search in English when the subject matter is anything spiritual or outside of modern mainstream religions. Surprisingly, this time, I found more information in German than in English.
The first thing I read (in German) by a Danish scholar Georg Brandes, talking about Ancient Armenian history and religion in one of his books that is not specifically mentioned on the website, was that Armenian deities “are not the Asian celestial demons nor the precious, fragile Greek Gods but something that mirrors the characteristics of the Armenian people that they had polished over the course of the centuries, namely ambitious, wise and kindhearted ones.” (Translation: Tirza Schaefer)
He further states that there are not many sources left that tell us about Ancient Armenian mythology as those were mainly destroyed when the country changed over to Christianity. However, some fragments of songs and poetry are left, as well as some written accounts by ancient travellers. Moreover, there are oral traditions and stories like fairytales that changed the myths of the deities to stories of humans. The fairytale of Goddess Anahit and the God of fire Vahagn, clad in the guise of a shepherd’s daughter and a royal prince, is one of those examples.
Anahit is called Anait and Vahagn is called Vachagan in this version. The prince came across the maiden, daughter of the shepherd Aran (the first creator sun god in the Ancient Armenian pantheon, ar meaning sun, who was then superseded by the Persian God Amarzd). He is hot from a hunt and she pours six jugs of water away before she hands him one to drink. When he asks her why she is teasing him, she said, she wasn’t teasing him; he was hot and the cold water could have harmed his health, so she gave him time to cool down.
The Fairytale of Queen Anait
Vachagan tells his parents then he is in love and wanted to marry this girl. After some discussion, the parents relent and Vachagan’s faithful servant Nazar is sent to Anait’s father to ask for his daughter’s hand in marriage. However, Aran tells Nazar that Anait has to decide on her own and when asked, she refuses to marry the prince on the grounds that he doesn’t know a trade. She had not been home in the beginning because she had taught the children of the village to weave, read and write. Nazar is impressed by her skill as a weaver but taken aback by her demand that a prince ought to know a trade.
Vachagan learns how to weave because he wants to marry this intelligent and headstrong woman. After a year, he is very skilled and sends her a cloth that is of exquisite quality. Anait sends one of her own beautiful carpets back with the answer that she now consents to marry the prince.
After the wedding, the servant Nazar disappears and cannot be found. A few years later, when king and queen have died and Vachagan and Anait are now king and queen, ruling the country, she advises him to go amongst his people in disguise to find out what they really think and what their cares and joys are to know them better. Vachagan finds this a wise counsel and goes off, but doesn’t return because he is abducted by robbers and thrown into a cave where he finds Nazar and other men who are made to work for the robbers or killed if they don’t know a trade.
Vachagan tells the robbers he can weave cloth of infinite value because he can integrate some Indian magic spells that will bring good fortune. He is given the materials and weaves in a message to his wife saying that he was abducted, held in a cave near a lake shaped like a sickle moon and that Nazar is with him, too. They need rescuing. The robber then offers Queen Anait the valuable cloth for sale. She looks at it, reads the message the illiterate robber couldn’t read and goes to rescue her husband and his servant.
Vachangan thanks her and tells her he is very happy she made him learn a trade and that he now knows how important it is to be able to read and write. Thus, the story ends on a happily ever after. For a full account of this fairy tale, read more here.
Anahit is the Goddess of water, which is the source of all Life, and also of wisdom, healing and fertility. She is the daughter of Aramazd and together with him and her brother-consort Vahagn she forms a triad. She is closely related to the Persian-Zoroastrian Anahita and going further East to India, the heart chakra’s name in Sanskrit is Anahata, which means unstruck, unhurt and unbeaten.
In other words, the meaning is pure, untainted, not hurt or wounded in any way and this means kindhearted and loving. There are no limiting beliefs, traumas or other energy blockages that have turned the bearer of this name to someone who is holding back love and understanding in any way. It is the unstruck sound of the celestial realm and stands for calmness, balance and serenity.
The exact origins are shrouded in history but we do know that Anahit was a later Goddess who superseded the ancient Armenian fertility Goddess Nar. The mythology of primal waters from which all of creation is born is a common one throughout the world. It is the theme of the Mothergoddess, the umbilical waters. However, Anahit has some very distinct individual features that render her less than exchangeable, also in relation to her Persian/Zoroastrian and Greek or Egyptian counterparts.
Unfortunately, not more records of this amazing Goddess have survived, but when you put the pieces together from Ancient sources and modern fairy tales, an image emerges that is way more than a creator or breeder. Anahit is also wise and she possesses knowledge. She makes her own decisions and won’t content with second best, no matter whether she is dealing with friend or foe, humans or deities. She is independent, determined and headstrong, yet wise, loving and nurturing at the same time. She is a Goddess of war as well and this means, she is a force to be reckoned with. Don’t get on her bad side.
Tuning into the energy of Anahit was one of the most beautiful personal experiences I have had in my history of connecting to Goddess energies. Before I go into detail describing my experiences, however, I must remind you that this is my personal experience and each individual has their own way of connection and experiencing the Divine in all its forms. If you have a different experience with Anahit, neither one is less valid. The Goddess simply interacts with each person in a way that is best suited to the individual. There is no one-size-fits-all in spirituality, as opposed to religion. It is all about your own personal experience.
When I connected to Anahit for the first time, it was through picking up a heart-shaped piece of wood with her name on it. This little heart plate is part of my personal Goddess oracle I made myself and Anahit was one of the Goddesses I had chosen for it intuitively, although I had not made a personal connection with her at the time. However, I have learned that each Goddess I have written about thus far and that had been chosen to be included earlier, always showed up in my personal experience when the time was right and shared of her wisdom, energy, power and insights with me at the time of writing an article about her.
In my Divine Library, there is no such thing as a purely intellectually based article. Each deity, each power animal has been tuned into and channelled at the time of writing. Thus, I have learned to trust my intuition implicitly. I think the most profound experience that has taught me to trust my inner guidance was when I asked my higher self where my next novel should be located and it told me Bulgaria. At first, I thought, my higher self had lost its marbles, but with hindsight, I can see how I learned about a country I hardly knew anything about and how my research served not only to make Balcony Above the Sea one of my favourite books but has also shaped me in my personal growth and as a writer.
Anahit stood before me with a gentle smile on her face. She is fluent, gentle, loving. She touches with care and lightness. She doesn’t take your heart by storm but whispers into it so that you feel touched as if by a small wave lapping ashore on the sand on a beach or a butterfly’s wings stroking over the insides of your hollowly cupped hands to hold it without squashing it. And yet, as gentle as her touch is, Anahit is powerful. Just not in an in-your-face-with-a-sledgehammer kind of way.
She is quiet, yet her presence is captivating. My personal path with her has been to learn patience, to take a step back and seethe bigger picture and to act from a point of love with a view to long-term consequences, rather than momentary passing emotions.
Anahit took my hands and smiled at me. She looked into my eyes, loving, yet not soft. She stood waiting for me to embrace my own power, take responsibility and realise it is not a weight that is crushing, but rather a liberating exercise when you are the master of your own life. She is the kind of mother who will encourage her children to do something themselves, still standing by and being that safety net, but giving them experiences of personal growth, of overcoming fear and of gaining a sense of achievement which will grow their confidence.
Anahit is that nurturer that will support you but she expects you to take inspired action, learn skills and use them in order to be independent and embrace your own powers. Her wisdom is that of a leader who empowers others to be the best version of themselves, which also makes her a perfect mother or parent in general. When working with her energies, we learn to face our fears and do it anyway, give ourselves time to move in a certain direction without judgement or impatience, but still supporting ourselves in finding motivation and courage to pursue our dreams and goals and grow, gaining in personal wisdom at the same time.
When we face the moments in life we have acted out of fear or other limiting beliefs, it is easy to condemn ourselves, feel guilty and hide those memories away from ourselves. However, Anahit reminds us, they are still there and won’t go away and that guilt and shame have never served to make anything better. Taking responsibility and learning from our mistakes, though, are very useful in becoming an ever greater version of ourselves.