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Gaia as Goddess

graphic from
external linkIn Gaia's Lapexternal linkThe Maryland Womyn's Gathering

I will sing of
well-founded Gaia,
Mother of All,
eldest of all beings,
she feeds all creatures
that are in the world,
all that go upon the goodly land
and all that are in the paths of the sea,
and all that fly:
all these are fed of her store.

--Homeric Hymn, 7th Century B.C.

It is not too difficult to see a connection betwene the traditional conception of the Earth Goddess and scientist James Lovelock's "Gaia-hypothesis"; the idea of the Earth as a single living superorganism [James Lovelock, Gaia - a new look at life on Earth, Oxford University Press, 1979].

It should be pointed out however that  Lovelock's own theories, profound and revolutionary as they are, are still essentially materialistic and in a sense reductionistic.  He is strongly opposed to any actual personification of Gaia.  The whole thing is nothing but a poetic metaphor he says; like calling a ship "she" [Ibid pp.ix-x].  The idea of Gaia as a spiritual being, or even a Divine being, an actual living Goddess, we owe not to Lovelock  himself, but to the various Neo-Pagan,  "New age", Alternative, and ecologically minded people who have popularised, and in so doing modified, his theory.

So, if Lovelock is concerned with Gaia's outermost nature - with the living Earth conceived of in a purely mechanical, cybernetic sense (e.g. the daisyworld simulation) - then the more Alternatively minded people are concerned with her innermost nature - with  the very Soul or Divine Presence of the Earth.

image from external linkGoddess Gallery Online

Web links Links Web links

Web SitegraphicsphotosGaia - Greek Mother Goddess - the best Gaia Goddess site I have seen.  Beautiful!

web page Dedication to Gaia

web pagephotoGoddess Gallery Online - Sacred and Mythological Art - Millennial Gaia -  a beautiful sculpture here (see above for reduced size image)

web page The Gaia Hypothesis - a lovely simple straightforward explanation of Gaia - the global superorganism

The Weak Gaia hypothesis (non-homeostatic - Reductionist )
The standard Gaia Hypothesis
(homeostasis) - e.g. "daisyworld"
The Strong Gaia theory
sentient Goddess Earth
you are here!
The Esoteric position
(hierarchies of consciousness)

parent nodeThe Gaia Hypothesis

parent nodeVarious Interpretations of Gaia

parent nodeGaia - the Spiritual Reality

internal link Gaia and Consciousness

internal link Living in Harmony with Gaia - Holism and Ecological Spirituality



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content by M.Alan Kazlev
page uploaded 3 July 1999, last modified 19 August 2004