Saule is the beloved Baltic Sun Goddess, about whom thousands of dainas (folksongs) were sung. Saule is associated with the Golden Apples of the Sun. In some stories, Saule is a red apple setting in the west; in others, she sleeps in an apple tree. When she is sad, she sits in her apple garden weeping tears of amber, the sun-stone. At Winter Solstice, Kaleda, Saule is reborn as her daughter the morning-star. The Golden Apples of the Sun are known not only in Baltic mythology, but in Greek tales of the Garden of the Hesperides and in Nordic and Celtic stories as well.
Seven Gods of Good Fortune
This group of seven Japanese deities traditionally thought to bring good luck, wealth, and a long life. Their cult first became common around the 15th century. The gods have mixed origins. Some of them began as deities, others only as sages. Some have their roots in Shinto, the Japanese national religion, and others are of Chinese or Buddhist derivation. The seven gods include: Ebisu, a Shinto god of fishing and trade, who carries a lucky sea bream; Daikoku, a mixed Shinto-Buddhist god of wealth and agriculture, with a rice bag and a wish-granting wooden hammer; Bishamonten, a Buddhist guardian deity and god of good luck, dressed in armor; Benzaiten, or Benten, a Buddhist goddess of water, music, and wealth, who plays a lute; Hotei, a fat-bellied Chinese Zen monk who brings good luck; Fukurokuju, a Chinese immortal with a large head who grants longevity; and Jurojin, a Chinese sage and god of long life, often accompanied by a deer. A favorite subject for Japanese porcelain doll figurines (netsuke), the seven gods are often depicted together in art, sometimes seated aboard a treasure ship that brings good fortune. Placing such a picture of the gods under one's pillow on New Year's Eve (December 31) is supposed to ensure a lucky first dream for the new year.
Shango is the Orisa God of Courage, Intelligence and Truth. Son of Yemayah, he is the Lord of lightning, thunder, rain and testicular fertility. He is smooth-talking, kingly, yet can be shrewd as a con-artist. He wins against the odds and is stimulated by challenge. The double-headed dance wand headdress (oshe Sango) and double-edged ax symbolize his constant preparedness, and he carries the phallic mortar, or odo, in his right hand. His animal representations are the black cat, quail and tortoise. This image originates from Bahia, Brazil.
In Lakota Sioux mythology Skan is a god embodying the sky. Skan is the most powerful of the Superior Gods, four primal deities which are aspects of the Supreme Being Wakan Tanka.
The Iroquois trace the beginning of human life to a time when Skywoman fell to an island created by a giant turtle. The island grew in shape and size and became North America. There, Skywoman gave birth to a daughter whose children propagated the human race.
Sophia is the Hebrew consort of Yahweh, and probably predates him, her origins going back to Inanna and Isis. She is the "woman clothed with the sun," who brings the blazing light of knowledge. Sophia is the embodiment of all wisdom, and it is she who urges us to know, to understand. She leads the willing soul out of ignorance and blesses those who study and endeavor to know her. In the words of Solomon: "I prayed and understanding was given me, I called upon God and the spirit of Wisdom came to me. I loved Her above health and beauty, and chose to have Her instead of light, for the light that cometh from Her never goeth out." Sophia is the deepest part of ourselves that part that can grasp in an instant the mysteries of the ages.
Spider Old Woman
Spider Old Woman is a diety of the Tewa/Hopi. Way back in the distant past, the ancestors of humans were living down below in a world under the earth. They weren't humans yet, they lived in darkness, behaving like bugs. The Great Spirit watched over everything. He saw how things were down under the earth, so he sent his messenger, Spider Old Woman, to talk to them. She said, "You creatures, the Sun Spirit doesn't want you living like this. He is going to transform you into something better, and I will lead you to another world." When they came out on the surface of the earth they became human. In the journeys that followed, they sought a place of harmony where they could follow good teachings and a good way of life.
Spiral-force or serpent force is the Goddess energy. From deepest Pre-history onwards the spiral was associated with horns and snakes, and symbolized dynamism, fertility and the vital magic of life. Profusions of spirals decorate ancient temples in Ireland, Malta and Mycenea, as well as countless pictographic monuments throughout the world. Here the Goddess raises her arms, invoking the spiral-power within Her. If her arms were joined she'd be "drawing down the moon". If seen with a leafless tree it represents the Goddess rooted in the Earth, swelling toward regeneration while bathed in the glow of waxing, full, and waning moons.
In the Slav region Svarog is the supreme elemental deity of the ancient Slavics, and the divine personification of the sky. Svarog had two sons: Dazhbog, who was the sun god, and Svarozhich, who was the personification of fire. Svarog's most famous shrine was at Rethra in the area of the Plobians, a western Slavic people living in what is now northeastern Germany. The temple contained a golden effigy of the god wearing a helmet resembling a bird with outstretched wings.