The Gorgons in classic Greek mythology were three versions of the archaic Goddess. Their names were Medusa, Stheino, and Euryale: Wisdom, Strength, and Universality. Most Hellenic writers portrayed them as monsters, such conviction currently continues. However, these were the titles of the Moon Mother. The Orphic mysteries continued calling the moon “The Gorgon’s Head.”

The Gorgon’s Head may be thought of originating from the prophylactic mask signifying the face of Athene or Medusa surrounded by snake-locks. Corgo, Gorgon, or Gorgopis “Grim Face,” was the title of Athene, the death goddess. One of the first derogatory legends concerning the Face was that Perseus cut off Medusa’s head and gave to his goddess. But this legend was design as an attempt to hide Athene’s roots when she was called Medusa, or Metis.

Another derogatory remark is that the Gorgon look would turn a man to stone. Presumably this originated from the use of the Gorgon face to enforce the taboo against revealing the Goddess Mysteries, guarded by stone pillars formerly erected in honor of her secret deceased lovers. Perhaps a remnant of this is evident in the Biblical story of Lot, his wife was turned into a pillar of salt when disobeying the angels’ command and looked back toward her home. One possible explanation for her doing so was she still cared for her home. The Jewish God Yahweh wanted to destroy man’s desires for earthly things just as he wanted to destroy the Mother Goddess. A.G.H.


Source:

Walker, Barbara G. The Woman’s Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets. New York. HarperCollins. 1983. p. 349

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