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- Sigmund Freud, Chad Gray, Howard Hughes, Vincent Price, Christopher Reeve, vampires, serial killers, drummers in rock bands.
- Favorite Movie
- The Sixth Sense, starring Bruce Willis (1999).
- Hades ruled the underworld, the realm of the dead. He was wealthy beyond counting, but was a recluse. Hades wore a cap of invisibility when he left the underworld. The Romans knew Hades as Pluto.
- Emotional Control Systems
- Hades symbolizes the psychic pain of sorrow, grief, and loneliness-and the psychological insights this can lead us to.
- A dysfunctional Hades man may make people connect to deep feelings, but not help them move to higher states of consciousness. E.g., O.J. Simpson made millions of Americans aware of deep, hidden racist feelings, but he didn't do anything to improve relations between the races.
- Other Personality Type Systems
- Hades is represented in astrology by Scorpio (basing one's life on one's deepest convictions), and the 8th House (of Death, and major transformation). Hades isn't represented in the Enneagram.
- Sex and Marriage
- The characters within the book "Interview with the Vampire" by Anne Rice (1976) is comparable to the Greek god Hades servants.
- But Hades servants can be invisible to women. A Hades man may not be good at flirting or dating. He may have elaborate, deep fantasies rather than relationships with real women. If he tries to make a relationship real, the woman may accuse him of abduction-perhaps only because he lacks social skills.
- Hades men can deeply love women, in committed, faithful relationships. Marriage can draw a Hades man out of reclusion, and into participation in family and community.
- To meet Hades men, wear Goth black velvet dresses. Dive into the depths of depression, and look around at who's there. On the contrary to meet Hades men one would need to meet a Scorpio Sun, Rising sign or Moon. This is a Hades man. Also, any man that is possessed by power and control may be a Hades man. Hades does NOT rule depression, we'll leave that to Saturn, what he IS, is deeply introspective and highly discerning. So much so that his skills of observation make him appear distant, but truly he is assessing everything and everyone around him.
- Ophelia in Hamlet; Laura in Tennessee Williams' The Glass Menagerie (1944); Sylvia Plath; Dory Previn (Mythical Kings and Iguanas singer-songwriter, André Previn's wife); Hannah Green, author of I Never Promised You a Rose Garden (1988).
- Changes her hairstyle to reflect personal growth. Tries new hairstyles to try new directions for personal growth.
- Persephone was the young daughter of Zeus and Demeter. She was picking flowers one day on the plain of Enna. She pulled an especially beautiful narcissus, the earth split open. Hades, ruler of the dead, came out of a gap in the earth and thundered up in his golden chariot pulled by four black horses. He grabbed the screaming girl and carried her down to the underworld. When this happened only Zeus and Helios, the sun titan, saw it.
- As Demeter searched for her daughter, her despair caused crops to die. Helios told her what he had saw and Demeter became furious. She would not let anything be fertile until Persphone came back. Zeus could no longer let this go on so he sent Hermes to fetch Persephone.
- Hades allowed Persephone to go back to her mother, even though he did not want her too. He did not like the fact so before Hermes came to fetch her, he gave Persephone a pomegranate. When she ate the seeds of the delicious fruit she was then bound to the underworld forever. Demeter was furious, but could do nothing about it. Persephone from then on spent 1/3 of the year in the Underworld with the King and her cold blooded husband, Hades. Eventually she began to love him more and more. Demeter still did not like this so she spent the time that her daughter was gone, sulking and would not let anything be fertile. This time is known as winter.
- As Queen and Goddess of the Underworld, Persephone guided mortals who descended to the realm of the dead on a quest. When the musician Orpheus came looking for his dead wife, his song was so beautiful that Persephone granted his wish and restored his wife's life. When Aphrodite sent Psyche to the underworld for cosmetics, Persephone filled Aphrodite's box (the word psychology derives from Psyche's name). When Heracles (a.k.a. Hercules) descended to Hades for his twelfth labor, Persephone helped the hero bring Hades' three-headed dog Cerberus to show the king of Mycenae.
- The Romans called her Proserpina. Persephone as the innocent maiden was Kore (the Romans called her Cora), to distinguish her from Persephone as Queen of the Underworld. Pesephone is a part of the Triple Goddess depiction with Kore as maiden, Persephone as Mother, and Hekate as Crone, another depiction is Persephone, Demeter, Hekate.
- Emotional Control System
- Persephone symbolizes separation distress, from one's mother or, more broadly, from one's old life to a new life. Separation distress is the basis of anxiety and panic attacks. Also, Persephone's distress from her mother can be determined by the many stories that are told about her from the Greeks and later the Romans. In the original story of Persephone that was later changed by the Roman's, Persephone chose to leave her mother and go with Hades, whom she had fallen in love with. The separation "anxiety" was felt by Demeter not Persephone due to her choice of physically leaving her mother and transitioning (transformation) into womanhood, allowing her to think and be as she chose.
- Life Purpose
- A Persephone woman's life purpose is to separate from her past, (it becomes evident as she heals from her past) as she transforms into a new person. She then guides other individuals through personal transformations. Ideal professions include writer, poet, musician, artist, counselor, psychologist, social worker, and a psychic/seer.
- A Persephone psychologist sees depression and mental illness not as symptoms to be medicated or eradicated, but as profound journeys. The sojourner goes through pain and suffering, but sooner or later reaches a greater level of consciousness. Just as Persephone guided Odysseus, Heracles, Psyche, and Orpheus in their journeys to the underworld, a Persephone psychologist guides a patient to find his life's treasure, and then return to the world of the living. Hades, which was the name of both the underworld and its king, had uncountable riches. This symbolized that personal growth can lead to great rewards.
- Persephone is the New Moon phase as she offers new beginnings. She represents the ability to walk between worlds (consciousness), from the underworld to the surface of earth. She is a Spring time deity and offers the hope of renewal and rebirth. In the underworld her duties are to take care of the dead souls that come to Hades, something which is amazing at.
- A dysfunctional Persephone woman is passive, compliant and uncommitted to goals. She may escape into a fantasy world. She may be psychically gifted, but suffer from psychiatric illness or anorexia. Depression makes her "fade away" quietly, as opposed to forcing her depression onto others (as Demeter did).
- A Persephone woman tries to please her mother and be a "good girl." She expects teachers or supervisors to hold her hand through each step. But Persephone lied to her mother about the pomegranate. A Persephone woman will use deviousness, lying, and manipulation, while maintaining a guise of innocence.
- Other Personality Type Systems
- Persephone is represented in astrology by Virgo.
- An advice columnist received the following letter:
- My friend is the most wonderful, caring, loving person I've ever met, but also the most naïve. I know from personal experience that she has an unusually large sexual appetite, little if any interest in foreplay, and cannot seem to reach orgasm, ever. I am sure that I'm not her only current partner, as much as she assures me I am. In the past, she has given herself away so many times, I can't count them. For all her goodness, I've seen her lie to other people so convincingly they wouldn't believe she was lying, even if you told them. My concern now is not me, but her....Even if I never touched her again, I really do care about her and would like to help her. * this is a genernalization of a "persephone" energy, not all Persephone's are like this.
- To meet Persephone women, care about other individuals, act decisively, and wear a black cape.
A Hades-Persephone marriage is transformational. A couple that successfully uses this energy guides each other through life-changing experiences. They separate (possibly painfully) from the past. They mature to higher stages of personal growth.
Caring About More People
Humans, more than other animals, depend on social organizations for survival. Individuals-today or 100,000 years ago-with more relationships survive and prosper.
As our ancestors evolved, they lived in larger groups (see "Cities and Civilization," page 35). Larger brains enabled them to keep track of more relationships (and may have contributed to the evolution of larger brains).
As our individual development mirrors our ancestors' evolution (see "Ontogeny Recapitulates Phylogeny," page 3), we care about more people as we mature. Children are concerned only about their own needs. A young adult cares about his or her romantic partner. A mature adult cares about his or her family. A clan elder cares about the survival of the clan. Personal growth is, stage by stage, caring about increasing numbers of people.
Caring about other people entails personal suffering. Our minds produce psychic pain (pain that originates in the mind) to push us to accept physical pain. Psychic pain can be stronger than physical pain. E.g., a hunter brings home only a rabbit. He has to decide between feeding his family and feeling hunger, or feeding himself and feeling guilt.
Skipping Life Stages
Personal growth wasn't an issue before the modern era. Puberty made young people want a partner. Procreation led to caring about a family. Arranging children's marriages led to caring about other families. Natural disasters forced individuals into leadership roles for the survival of the clan.
The modern world isn't so straightforward. Adolescents sexually mature earlier. We marry later, because our society demands more education.
Our ancestors were most aware of suffering around them. In contrast, our "electronic global village" makes us aware of suffering in far-off corners of the globe. We "think globally" as soon as we're old enough to watch television news. Yet we care less about the people we're closest to.
Traditional societies don't facilitate skipping life stages, but our society does. If a welfare program pays teenage girls to produce babies, the girls skip the marriage stage and jump to motherhood. If television news enables us to care about people on the other side of the world, we jump to agape and skip developing a loving relationship with one partner. Persephone and Hades had a good relationship although hades sent Persephone to the underworld to be the god of spring and growth
Lack of Emotional Range
Our ancestors endured great suffering, e.g., extremes of weather, or long periods with little food. Human brains evolved to balance suffering and happiness. The greatest joy follows the greatest suffering (see "Emotional Range," page 116).
The modern world minimizes physical suffering, yet our brains continue to balance happiness and suffering. Our narrower emotional range leads us to differentiate finer levels of happiness and suffering, e.g., driving a Lexus vs. a Chevy. We confuse personal growth with appreciating luxury goods.
Seek extremes of suffering and joy. Run marathons. Travel to third-world countries. Forget about job security and instead do what you love, even if you have to drive a Chevy.
Sometimes we feel stuck between stages of personal growth. We don't get stuck because we lack a vision of our new life. We all have dreams of a better life.
We don't get stuck because we don't know how to get to our new life. We don't know every step of the way, but we all know at least one step we could take.
We get stuck because we avoid the suffering of the transition to our new life. E.g., quitting your job to do what you love might require trading in your Lexus for a Chevy. As if it were that simple--someone's Lexus need not be thought of derisively-- that the suffering required is as close to un/bearable (whether Lexus or Cancer or new office) and is perceived to be a loss, though it need not be thought of as lesser or great than, which causes pain, or else the transition would occur without notice, which is to say without transition, without change, with out not with in. Without noticing the end there is no beginning within.
Most individuals are more or less equally happy. CEOs and janitors report feeling happy the same number of hours per day, and report the same number of hours of unhappiness. Only individuals with many relationships are more often happy than other individuals. I.e., only loneliness can make us unhappy more than we're happy, if we let it and perceive it to be a loss or less than rather than just difference. Connection to a partner, family, and community is the only way to be happy more than you're unhappy, which cannot always be considered the truth.
Psychic Pain Indicates Readiness for Personal Growth
The modern world eliminates physical suffering. We now feel psychic pain with no connection to physical suffering.
The modern world confuses our stages of personal growth. We now feel psychic pain with no indication of the direction in which we need to grow.
Psychic pain-e.g., depression, anxiety, guilt-indicates that we're ready to mature to a new stage of personal growth.
One response is to numb psychic pain, e.g., alcohol, Prozac, "feel good" psychology, or switching on a television. Another response is to buy luxury goods. But your psychic pain soon returns, making you repeat the process.
Self-destructive behavior is another response. Everything that reminds you of your old self-e.g., spouse, job, neighborhood, hobbies-causes psychic pain. You try to destroy your old life, instead of building a new life.
The Hades-Persephone Relationship
(Men and women can use either Hades or Persephone behavior. To simplify language, I use male pronouns to refer to Hades partners, and female pronouns to refer to Persephone partners.)
In a Hades-Persephone relationship, the Hades partner forces the Persephone partner to change. He loves her without loving her present or past self. He sees her emerging new life stage and loves her for that, but without projecting his own issues onto her.
*correction* This is inaccurate. Hades loves all parts of Persephone as she represents his shadow as well. This couple are ONE because they are 2 separate individuals, they come as a package, one is nothing without the other.
He forces her to experience pain and suffering. He maintains a close, supportive relationship until she's through her painful transformation.
*correction* This is inaccurate. Hades does not introduce Persephone to pain and suffering, he assists her in integrating her shadow, understanding its purpose and meaning in her life, Hades actually brings about completion in Persephone as he teaches her through is own presence to stand in her own power. Pain and suffering is a natural part of life, therefore instead of running away from it like many humans do, we are to understand it, heal it if necessary and transform, the whole foundation of what Hades/Persephone represent.
The Hades partner must do two, contradictory actions:
- Care about his partner more than cares about himself. *not correct*
- Do not what he's told, but what must be done. * not correct*
E.g., a favorite movie theme is an individual putting himself in harm's way to help another individual, while at the same time rejecting orders from an authority figure. A hero takes decisive action, and takes responsibility for his action.
Caring about another person more than yourself is a feminine trait. Doing not what you're told, but what must be done is a masculine trait. Combined, the Hades partner uses masculine and feminine behaviors at the same time. He transcends gender roles. The relationship transforms him, as well as transforming his partner.
The wrong masculine response is to selfishly do what you want to do, ignoring what you're told, caring only about your own needs. The wrong feminine response is to do what another person requests, against the other person's best interests, or against your own best interests (i.e., self-sacrificing behavior).
A Hades-Persephone relationship demands deep, immediate commitment. Such a relationship takes place right here, right now. You're committing to the relationship until your partner reaches the next stage of her personal growth. This could be years, or could be hours. Don't be afraid to enter a Hades-Persephone relationship -you're not committing to a lifetime together.
*correction* Actually you ARE making a life time commitment. Hades/Persephone are a couple, a team, one is not without the other. Relationships such as this are not to be taken lightly as the soul growth required is intense and both spiritually and physically transformative. To enter into this contract signifies either soul mates or twin flame energy and thus is seen as a path to both individual and collective (the partners) evolution.
A Hades-Persephone relationship is a moral dilemma for the Hades partner. If he does what she tells him to do, he fails to care about her. If he does what must be done, he's acting against her will (and possibly against the law).
*correction* no where does Hades have to do with the Law, that's Saturn's domain. Hades never acts against his own will, he is power and control. Hades does not have a weak constitution therefore he only acts when necessary and in accordance to the will of both partners in tandem.
Sexually, our culture associates Hades-Persephone relationships with BDSM (bondage, domination, sadomasochism). But BDSM is a stuck Hades-Persephone relationship. If your goal is personal growth and transformation, keep the relationship non-sexual. If a Hades man is having sex with a Persephone woman, he'll focus on his needs instead of her needs.
*correction* this is HIGHLY inaccurate!! The foundation of a Hades/Persephone relationship is death and rebirth, transformation! Sexuality is the very foundation of this relationship simply because it is our deepest and most primal expression as human beings, it releases, enlivens and heals many parts of the self that allow human beings to not only thrive but flourish. Think about the chemical connections we make due to sexual interaction with the "right" lover. BDSM in general is NOT a signifying factor in Hades/Persephone relationships, not all of these kinds of relationships will have this dynamic. However, through the act of this lifestyle "Hades/Persephone" can play with the dynamics of power and control releasing inhibitions and fears regarding sexuality and heal from any adverse experiences from the past. So, on the contrary it is almost crucial that anyone with these themes running through their relationship include sexual interaction, power play, control dynamics and release into the union to become reborn.
This is not always so. Please keep in mind that the very foundation of this relationship is sexuality. The expression of sexuality here is mutual,were both partners gain something that instigates the transformation of both of the souls involved. If done properly sexual expression can lead to deep spiritual and psychological transformation as well as emotional. It gives the Hades/Persephone archetype something to "chew" on so that both are rendered free from the "bond" that binded them in the first place. Things such as fear, sexual abuse, emotional abuse, are common here. Also, repressed sexuality based on any of these things can hinder a true Persephone from growing and becoming sexually ripe. With the right hades she can move across the stifling dimensions of past lives, break down emotional barriers and find herself fully awakened by the PROCESS of being reborn. The right hades man will take pleasure in her submission, because it is a GIFT. Persephone is not weak by nature, she is seeking something greater than being the bringer of spring. She represents true change and deep psychological growth and requires restriction in order for it to be felt, integrated, sifted through and truly transformed. Letting go, allowing hades to shape her, mold her, seduce her, and take her into realms beyond her wildest mind is what allows her to renew and thus see and ACCEPT herself as she truly is. Hades will love her the more she submits, releases, and integrates parts of herself she would not have found had she not surrendered. She comes out empowered, whole, powerful, and wields that power in her walk, her sexuality and her treatment of others. Hades feels stronger, capable and is allowed to push her limits, to find himself, to love himself and to find greater parts of himself that NEEDS to dominate. Not to control her every being, to change who she is but to mold her, massage her, to assist in her birthing process as he releases her bondage, her chains her self misunderstandings. Hades role is just as powerful as he has to exercise self control, have a commitment to Persephone, give attention to detail in every facet of her life. Hades is an instrument of the mundane in their lives that requires order, attention and lessons to be executed. Sexually he is her slave he finds her most deepest desires and seeks to transform her through experience them, and yes, this also includes her fears. This is no small order. It takes a man that is in control of himself, self mastery, his emotions,his vision, his desires. In everything he puts Persephone FIRST.
I hardly call that selfish. The "true" Hades man will focus more on his Persephone's needs than his own.
Why Women Do Things to Drive the Men They Love Up the Wall
A woman uses Persephone behavior to test whether her man is capable of being Hades. She uses Persephone behavior-passive-aggressive, self-destructive, or just annoying-to communicate that she's unhappy with her present life and wants to move to a new stage of personal growth. She tests whether he loves her for who she will be-her inner, emerging self-not who she is now.
With a Dionysus partner (e.g., a cult leader), a Persephone woman gets madness. With an Ares partner, she gets physical abuse. With a Poseidon partner, she gets emotional abuse. With Zeus, she gets cheated on. Hermes and Apollo talk with her endlessly (with and without jokes, respectively). With Hephaestus, she gets useful electronic gadgets.
But with a Hades partner, a Persephone woman goes through pain and suffering with her partner's attention and support. She's transformed to a new stage of personal growth..
Hades and Persephone in Every Marriage
Artemis, Athena, and Hestia women don't need men. A Hera woman needs a husband, but he can be absent or even dead. A Demeter woman needs only a sperm donor. Aphrodite women enjoy men, but are happy with fun, shallow relationships.
Persephone women exasperate men, but they're the only women who need intimacy with men. A Persephone woman needs a strong, loving man to support her through painful but necessary transformation. Persephone women are "high maintenance" but worth it.
I beg to differ Persephone women are NOT high maintenance, they are in fact misunderstood. Divas they are not. Persephone women need a strong man who has self mastery, who can also be a natural dominant so that they BOTH can transform. Any man that is "vanilla" or static in representation will die a needless death (divorce or abandonment which is a Persephone theme) because he could not HANDLE her energy, her spiritual goal or her sexuality. There are many men who ACT DOMINATE who in their very nature are not TRUE dominants.
Looked at another way, all women have all seven goddesses in them. When they're using the other six archetypes they have little or no need for men. But a woman goes into Persephone mode to express her need for intimacy with her man. When your woman becomes a self-destructive "lunachick" and drives you up the wall, she's not trying to break off the relationship. She's trying to transform herself, yourself, and the relationship to next level.
- Leung, Shirley, "Why Doesn't Anyone Want to Play Drums for a Rock 'n' Roll Band?" The Wall Street Journal, July 31, 2001, A1.
- McCracken, Grant. Big Hair: A Journey Into The Transformation of Self (Overlook, 1996, 0-87951-657-7). Photo of Sylvia Plath from
- Louanne Weston; WebMD; March 11, 2002; http://my.webmd.com/question_and_answer/article/1687.51066?z=1687_00000_0000_f1_02