H is for Hekate
Held high by Zeus, Hekate is the goddess of magic, witchcraft, the night, moon, and necromancy. She is the child of Titanes Perses and Asteria. Hekate is referred to as the key bearer in reference to her guardianship of the underworld. She is also considered to be a light bringer.
Hekate followers make their offerings of garlic and honey at the crossroads. This is a point where three roads meet. Known as a triple form goddess, Hekate is said to have rule over the heavens and the earth, including the sea and the underworld. She is the guardian of the underworld and through necromancy and ghost work, she uses her keys to guild souls through their journey there.
One of my favorite myths on Hekate is the story of Persephone. Persephone was kidnapped by Hades to be the Queen of the Underworld. As Demeter searched for Persephone she could not find her. On the 10th day Hecate told Demeter that Persephone had been taken, but she did not know by who and recommended they ask the God of the Sun, Helius who took her. When she learned that Hades took her daughter and that Zeus was not aiding in her return Demeter walked the earth as a mortal forbidding the trees from bearing fruit. After a year of this Zeus agreed to get Persephone back from Hades. Zeus sent Hermes to collect Persephone, but he found that she had eaten pomegranate seeds, meaning she could not leave the underworld. Because of this every year Persephone must return to the underworld and spend at least four months as the Queen of the Underworld. The rest of the year she can live with Demeter. While Persephone is away, Demeter is sad and all the plants die, and upon her return in the spring, they return to life.
Hekate is the guardian of those moving from this world to another. Like Persephone, looking for someone to lead them to the underworld, Hekate lights her torches and uses her keys to assist in their passage.
Just five days after my dedication to the Goddess, I was presented with my own situation of guiding a soul from the living to the dead. My estranged mother came to live with me on Friday the 13th following the full moon of my Devotee rites. Now I am tasked with assisting with her Stage IV Renal failure and numerous other health issues. Being only 60, she could have a long productive life, but her abuse of sugar and inability to take care of herself for some many years and made a short life probable. So here I sit, with a woman I do not know and do not care to know, needing to be taken care of, assisted with every aspect of her life, from doctor visits to bathing.
I can only believe that this is a journey presented to me by Hekate, and as she comforted Demeter and served as a guide for Persephone through the underworld so must I, guide this sad soul from this world to the next. I invoke her wisdom and guidance to assist me in making sure that no suffering occurs. I look for her torches to lead me to the correct path and to help in maintaining balance in all I do.
Namaste and Blessed Be