What is an Archetype ?
So you heard me talk and write and discuss and mention and speak about archetypes.
I seem to be doing that a lot.
And maybe you’re wondering ... what the heck is an archetype ?
Because some of these big words are kinda blurry if you know what I mean …
Well this is the time when you can get some education about it, and I get to explain, clarify and illustrate what is commonly referred to as an archetype.
Let's start with a dictionary, that's always a good place to start, and find a few definitions about the word archetype.
a recurrent symbol or motif in literature, art, or mythology.
a very typical example of a certain person or thing.
(in Jungian theory) a primitive mental image inherited from the earliest human ancestors, and supposed to be present in the collective unconscious.
Then there’s Wikipedia, another good source …
“In psychology, an archetype is a model of a person, personality, or behavior. An archetype is merely a defining example of a personality type. In this sense "mother figure" can be considered an archetype and instances can be found in various female characters with distinct personalities.
Archetypes have been present in mythology and literature for hundreds of years. The use of archetypes to analyze personality was advanced by Carl Jung early in the 20th century. The value in using archetypal characters in fiction derives from the fact that a large group of people are able to unconsciously recognize the archetype, and thus the motivations, behind the character's behavior.”
Does it seem a little clearer now ?
Let’s go for some examples then, to make it even simpler to grasp ...
The Bully Archetype - Intimidates others.
The Creature of Nightmare - Threatens the hero's life.
The Damsel in Distress - The hero rescues her.
The Devil Figure - Tempts the hero.
And so on …
You see now, the thing with archetypes is that we all know them.
We have been familiar with them since our childhood.
As a matter of fact archetypes having lingered in the collective unconscious for centuries, maybe even for millennia, always seem familiar to us, and most of the time we do not need explanations to understand perfectly what they mean.
An archetype is a persona, a character that appears in stories from many different cultures, hence making it well-recognized, sometimes all over the world.
Archetypes can almost be defined as genetically inherited, with our brain structure !
We have seen earlier that archetypes have been defined mostly by Carl Jung , and to quote him they are not “individual acquisitions but, in the main, common to all, as can be seen from [their] universal occurrence.”
And if I were to mention a specific archetype, without any explanations or names or situating it in a story, you would nonetheless be able to immediately have a mental image of what the archetype is referring to.
Let's try this !
Can you visualise the archetype of the villain ?
Of course you can.
You get the point now.
A small recap then …
Archetypes were a concept introduced by the Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung, who believed that archetypes were models of people, behaviors, or personalities. ... In Jungian psychology, the archetypes represent universal patterns and images that are part of the collective unconscious.
So I think you now know better what an archetype is…
The Greek Goddesses Archetypes
There are six main Greek Goddesses that lived on Mount Olympus … and I personally add a few others to enrich the possibilities and provide a wider array of archetypes to study.
The Greek Goddesses personified strong feminine qualities, the archetypes of which reside in all women. Understanding these archetypes and becoming aware of which goddess or goddesses are ruling our individual psyches, can open new depths of understanding for women.
Psychologist, C.G. Jung believed that people (in our case women) are influenced by these inner forces (archetypes), which are part of our collective unconscious. Tapping into this knowledge can raise a woman's awareness. It can help us find new personal meaning in our lives, or even empower us to alter our life course and start a new path toward enriching our souls!
The study of Goddess archetypes can enrich a woman's life by gaining a new perspective on what it means to be a woman, to learn to value her gender and appreciate the Goddess within herself!
Once you know your archetypes, the world becomes much easier to navigate.
You can then go within to invoke the power of your Goddesses and the woman you've always wanted to be!
Based on your archetypes, you can make more inspired choices about everything from relationships to excelling at work to choosing a piece of clothing. Through the prism of those archetypes, the world is clearer. You can live a truly empowered life knowing which doors you should walk through and which are best left unopened. Knowing your archetypes gives you the vocabulary to help you understand yourself and others better.
The following is a brief description of the Goddess archetypes. Find the Goddesses that most closely resemble who you are, or who you aspire to be.
And don’t forget to tell me all about it !
Gaia: Goddess of the Earth, she literally IS the planet. Gaia is the Grandmother and guardian, the roots and grounding factor in any woman’s life. A woman who is very concerned with ecology and nature, ready to embark on crusades and trekking trips, that is a Gaia woman ! The Goddess also represents the abundance of nature and Her influence can be seen in gardeners, farmers, tree and ocean activists, etc.
Persephone: The Maiden Goddess and Queen of the Underworld; also worshiped as the "Kore" (young girl). The Goddess Persephone represents the duality of the child-woman. A woman who has difficulty committing to a relationship or work, or an educational goal, is being influenced by Persephone. She never quite figures out what she wants to be when she grows up, but she also has the remarkable ability to be eternally youthful!
Aphrodite: Goddess of Love and Beauty. Aphrodite governs a woman's enjoyment of love, beauty and of sensuality and sexuality. Aphrodite's influence is felt in a woman's desire, as well as her need to be artistically creative. Aphrodite demands intensity, in total absorption in who she is with or what she is doing.
Demeter: Goddess of Grain, Nurturer, and Motherhood. Demeter was worshiped as the "Mother Goddess" and the mother of the maiden, Persephone. Demeter represents the maternal instinct; the archetype gives women the compelling desire to become pregnant. A Demeter woman needs to nurture and care for children, and finds great joy in preparing food for her family and her guests.
Hestia: Goddess of the hearth and Temple, Wise-woman; Hestia is insightful, looking inward to intuitively sense what is going on. Hestia does not need to leave the home to find herself; she makes the home, a home. The Hestia archetype provides a woman with a sense of wholeness.
Artemis: Goddess of the hunt and Goddess of the moon: she was the archer with perfect aim. Artemis is a back-to-nature woman; a sister; she belongs to no man. Artemis strongly represents achievement and competence, independence from men and male opinions, a passionate concern for powerless women and children, and for women experiencing childbirth.
Athena: Goddess of wisdom and also Goddess of crafts. She is a pragmatic thinker who can keep her head in an emotional situation. The Athena archetype is present in business women, college professors, and other professions that rely on a woman's strategy to get ahead. Athena women seek the company of men as equals.
Hera: Goddess of Marriage; her name means "Great Lady". Hera is committed to the role of wife, which brings both joy and sorrow into her life. Hera is The Commitment-Maker and infidelity in her marriage can cause Hera to be overtaken with jealous rage. Women who experience a pressing desire to get married are experiencing this archetype in their psyche.
Iris: Goddess of the Rainbow and Messenger for the Gods: she is the representation of the complete woman, who has integrated all the archetypes, and who can now claim to communicate directly with the Goddesses. She has visited each archetype, each colour of the rainbow, and has learnt from them on her path to rising.
Now these are the 9 archetypes I commonly present as the major ones for women to walk with.
Of course this summary of their characteristics is extremely brief and there are many facets to each Goddess, which is the main strength of the Archetypes.
Of course there are many more, some of them less well-known, some more frightening, each and every one of them beneficial to visit, on our path towards our higher selves.
These ladies form the core of my teachings and my mission to make the world a better place by assisting women to open up, feel empowered and rise to be the highest version of themselves, all the while participating in the awakening of the Divine Feminine Energy in the world!
So I'm not done talking about them ! Each month I invite you to a free masterclass about one of these goddesses and a particular theme that you can work or play on, regarding this archetype.
In September we will be visiting the Athena archetype and centering around the theme of speaking your truth.
If you're interested, don't hesitate to join my mailing list, so you can get all the info.
In the meantime, I do hope you ponder about these 9 archetypes and shoot me an email or a comment about the one, or the ones, that you particularly resonated with.
And I’ll see you lovely people.
In the meantime, I’m sending, as always, love, light and gratitude.
PS : Join my free Facebook Group and tell me what you think, I love hearing from you !
PS : So if you feel that the Athena Archetype is calling you, that you might be in dear need of some energy about speaking your truth to the world ... You can join the Free mini workshop Speak your truth with Athena on Thursday, Sep 19th. Here's the info:
Do you feel you know what you want but are not always able to ask for it ?
Do you experience frustration at not knowing how to speak up for yourself ?
Are you often taken for granted and feel you’re not being acknowledged ?
Do you feel there is someone inside you screaming to be heard and respected?
Are you not sure you actually know what you want ? Are your familiar with your own voice ?
Would you love to feel confident about your desires and your ability to express them but have no real idea of a way to get there ?
I see you. THAT is when you need assistance from Athena, Greek Goddess of the Truth and Wisdom.
Assistance in taking time and energy to listen to your inner poetry, and then proceeding to share it with the world, assistance in getting out of your own way, in just plainly speaking your truth, in reconnecting with your wisdom and stategize ways to express it.
If you hear the call, take part in my free "Speak with Athena" Live Mini Workshop, happening Thursday, September 19th ! Subscribe to my email list and I will be sending you the links for this Free hands-on 1 hour workshop to get to know Athena and planning for your inner truth to shine !
Click here: http://bit.ly/2HEMHBJ