“To Hestia, Fumigation from Aromatics. Daughter of Kronos (Cronus), venerable dame, who dwellest amidst great fire’s eternal flame; in sacred rites these ministers are thine, mystics much blessed, holy and divine. In thee the Gods have fixed their dwelling place, strong, stable basis of the mortal race. Eternal, much formed, ever florid queen, laughing and blessed, and of lovely mien; accept these rites, accord each just desire, and gentle health and needful good inspire.” ~ Orphic Hymn 84, Thomas Taylor Translation
For the Ancient Greeks, the Goddess Hestia was the hearth, the fireplace, the altar. In the home, she was the family hearth and presided over the baking of bread and preparation of the family meal. Hestia also was the sacrificial flame and in every temple she received a portion of all the sacrificial offerings to the deities, ruled over all communal feasts, and received the first and last libations of wine.
When Poseidon and Apollo offered for her hand, she requested of Zeus that she remain an eternal virgin and so she is. This calm and dignified Goddess then took her place at the center of the people’s everyday life and the center of the rituals of state.
The presence of Hestia creates sacred space. As the hearth, Hestia was considered to be the center of the Universe, the center of the Earth, and the center of every home. Modern conveniences have shifted the hearth as the center of the home, but when we seek it, we find that there is a center, a place of gathering, the space that exudes comfort, the space that represents all of our feelings of “home”.
Our practice is to identify that center and purposefully invite Hestia in all of her sacred meanings into our homes.
Take time to sit quietly in your home when you are alone.
Breathe deeply and extend your energy through each room. Spend time in each room and analyze the energy and “presence” of each room. Identify the energy that radiates from each room, the intuitive hits that you receive.
What place is the natural gravitation point when you have gatherings? Where are you most comfortable in your home?
If there are others that live with you, invite them to participate. Ask them the same questions. Where is the “center”? Where does the heart of your home exist?
What are the qualities that make this room or area the center? Are there qualities that you wish to bring into the center that are not there?
Once you have identified the center of your home, create your home’s sacred space altar. Invite Hestia, another Hearth Goddess, or the Goddess that is the center of your devotion. Be creative and call the HEART of your home into being. Is it a chair that belonged to your Grandmother? Perhaps your Ancestor Altar resides in the center of your home and you can add a candle or lamp to invite Hestia?
For me, the kitchen has been the center of every home from my Grandmother’s kitchen, to the homes I grew up in, and to the home where I live. A statue of Hestia sits in the bay window of my kitchen right above the sink where she can gaze over the entire room. I give her special treasures: a set of mini wood spoons, a tiny cauldron, bowls of spices and herbs, colored glass that shines rainbows over her alabaster statue each morning. At some point every day, everyone in my home stands before her and receives the blessings of her center.
May Hestia bring you to center, bless and protect you and your family, and sustain the heart of your home!
Join me for the MotherHouse Goddess Temple Free Goddess Meditation Circle with the Goddess Hestia on 1/18/20!
The Goddess Hestia is also featured in Goddess Planner 2020 Winter Edition!
The Goddess Hestia as Keeper of the Flame (article on MotherHouse) by Constance Tippett
Goddesses in Older Women by Jean Shinoda-Bolen
Pagan Meditations: The Worlds of Aphrodite, Artemis, and Hestia by Ginette Paris