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water

 

This figure was known to the Assyrians as Kullulû, meaning “fish man.” The kullulu was a guardian figure, a dweller of the sacred Absu, the watery underground domain of the God Ea. Figures of the fish-man were often concealed in the construction of buildings to serve as protective charms.

From about the fourth century, the figure was associated (probably erroneously) with the god Dagan (meaning “grain”), most commonly known by his Hebrew name, Dagon. Dagan was a vegetation god, the father of the god Baal, the mythological creator of the plow. Dagon is mentioned several times in the Hebrew scriptures, where he is associated with the Philistines. It is to Dagon’s temple that the Ark of the Covenant is taken after being captured from the Hebrews; the next morning, they discover the statue of the god lying on the floor, sans head and hands.

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Tiamat (“Sea,” in Akkadian) was the ancient Sumero-Babylonian personification of the primordial salt waters of chaos. With her consort Apsu, the ‘sweet’ water, Tiamat mothered the first generation of the gods.

Tiamat took the form of a gigantic winged dragon, whose body was split in two by the hero Marduk to create the heavens and the firmament: her upper body became the vault of heaven; the lower, the earth; her blood, the oceans.


The God Marduk Slays Tiamat

Related Resources:

  • Kemet
    The beliefs and practices of Kemet, a modern revival of ancient Egyptian religious practices.
  • Neopagan
    There are many flavors of Neopagan faiths, from faithful reconstructions of ancient religions, to witchcraft traditions and Goddess worship.

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This is a simplified image of the design that graces the cover of the Chalice Well at Glastonbury, designed in the nineteenth century by archaeologist Bligh Bond. Crafted of wrought iron and wood, it depicts the Vesica Pisces, a symbol of the divine feminine, and Excalibur, the sword of the legendary King Arthur, who is believed by some to be buried at Glastonbury.

The wellspring at Glastonbury is considered to be one of England’s most Holy sites. The well itself dates back over two thousand years, and was sacred to both early Pagans and the Christians who later built an abbey on the site. Today, the well is a place of pilgrimage for Christians and Pagans alike, many of whom believe the red, iron rich water has healing and miraculous properties. The vesica Pisces theme is repeated in the shape of the pool at the base of the hill, where the water from the spring flows.

An old legend holds that after the crucifixion, Joseph of Arimathea traveled to England and hid the Holy Grail on the premises, accounting for the water’s red hue. Modern Neopagans who use the site equate the waters with the menstruum of the Goddess.

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The cover in situ. The Pool.
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Related Symbols:
Green manHecate's wheelVesica pisces
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The alchemical/magical symbol for water is an inverted triangle, symbolizing downward flow. The downward pointing triangle is an ancient symbol of femininity, being a representation of female genitalia. One of the four alchemical elements, water has the properties cold and moist, and symbolizes intuition, the unconscious mind, and the enclosing, generating forces of the womb.

When paired with the fire triangle, or upward moving force, the Seal of Solomon is created. The water triangle is often represented by a chalice or cup; the symbol of water in tarot is the cup.

In Ritual magick and some Wiccan traditions, the elemental spirits of water are Undines.

Zodiac signs ruled by water are: Pisces, Cancer, Scorpio.

See also: Tools of Magick/Tarot Hallows

The Four Elements

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Water chalice, from the tarot
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Related Symbols:
Crescent moonAquarius Vesica pisces
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