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Mothers of the After Life - Goddesses Hel and Hine Nui Te Po

The Goddesses Hel and Hine Nui Te Po.

These two Goddesses are rulers of the afterlife and the underworld. They may have different stories however as the rulers of the afterlife and underworld they have a significant amount of influence and power.


There is not much information on Hel. The scrolls that mention Hel have been lost or are so fragmented that it is difficult to put a whole picture together.

She is the daughter of Loki and was feared and judged because of who her father was. It is understood that there was a prophecy concerning Hel which made the other gods and goddesses distance themselves from her and distrust her. Odin decided her had to something with Hel, so Odin sent her to the underworld. We can only assume that Oden probably thought well that's sorted that out I don't need to worry about her anymore.

Not everyone went to Valhalla, which was reserved for only some of the warriors who died a glorious, brave death. Others who died on the battlefield went to goddess Freyja in Fólkvangr. However, everyone who wasn't a warrior went to Helheim. Instead of fading into obscurity Hel rules over the dead. It seems she also has the power of resurrection.

However, Hel was later used by Christians to control and overpower the masses. They turned Helheim into a dark fiery place of pain and suffering, and Hel became an evil wife to the Devil. These descriptions of Hel and Helheim turned death into a thing to be feared and the only way you could avoid going to Hell was to follow the word of Christianity.

Hine Nui Te Po

Hine Nui Te Po was the daughter and wife of the Atua Tane. When she was born Hine Nui Te Po was known as Hine-ata-uira, the illuminating deity of dawn, also known as Hine-tītama She became curious who her father was. When Hine Titama discovered the truth, she became ashamed and made the decision to descend into the Underworld They are the mother that welcomes us as. Some stories tell of her taking her own life and others say she left and ran way.

Both these goddesses are there to greet us when we graduate from this life into to next and we continue on our journey. As the great mother of the afterlife, Hel /Hine Nui Te Po cares for us and protects us. She /they powerful and feminine energy. Wahine can use them as inspiration and the embodiment of empowerment. They rule as feminine on their own. We do not talk about them enough. Whenever I hear about Hine Nui Te Po it is always about suicide, but she is so much more than that. As women we need to ask ourselves why. Why do we associate Hine Nui Te Po with suicide and why is Hel seen as ugly, cold and disinterested.

As a man how can you use Hel and Hine Nui Te Po to remind your wahine and daughters how amazing they are and of what is possible.

Both these goddesses could have disappeared and become a tortured soul but instead they faced adversity and become the most powerful goddess of all. You can debate this if you like but you might want to think about it before you do. Think about the how they control the darkness, the demons, and they kept you safe as you transition from one life to the next. From one journey to another they are there to greet you and send you on your way. All the time keeping Whiro and demons under control.

Their power was striped and made to look like weakness, they may have been seen as crazy, unhinged, and emotional. Hel's power and personality was seen upon as being trouble and unpredictable. This is how certain fractions of society have wanted women to be seen so women stay reliant on men. However, this is a disservice to not only women but men and children as well. Families need their mothers, daughters, sisters, and aunties to strong, independent and well in mind, body and spirit. We are the nurturers that teach our children to be all they can be. We are there when everything falls apart. We support and encourage our husbands, sons, and brothers to be the men, husbands and fathers we all need them to be. The stories of our goddesses all over the world have been tainted by religions and men who fear the power of women, but their stories are import reminders of how powerful we are and the role we have in the world.

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