Snakes are a common motif in mythology, and they often appear as deities or divine beings. In many cultures, snakes are associated with wisdom, knowledge, and rebirth. Here are a few examples of snake gods from different mythologies.
Snake Gods from Different Mythologies
God Apep – Egyptian Mythology
In ancient Egyptian mythology, Apep was a giant serpent who threatened to consume the sun god Ra as he journeyed through the underworld each night. Apep was associated with chaos and destruction, and was defeated by other gods and goddesses who protected Ra.
Apep was the embodiment of the forces of chaos, and was often depicted as a giant serpent or dragon. He was considered the greatest enemy of the gods, and was said to live in the underworld. Each night, as Ra traveled through the underworld in his boat, Apep would attack and attempt to devour him.
The other gods and goddesses would come to Ra’s aid, using their powers to defeat Apep and protect the sun god. Some accounts say that Apep was ultimately defeated and cast into the underworld, where he was bound by the goddess Isis and other deities. In other stories, Apep was able to break free from his bonds and continue to battle the gods.
Despite his malevolent nature, Apep was also seen as a powerful force in the universe, and some people even worshipped him. In art, Apep was often depicted as a giant serpent with a crocodile-like head, or as a dragon with wings and a forked tongue.
God Vasuki – Hindu and Buddhist Mythology
Vasuki is a serpent god in Hindu and Buddhist mythology. He is a powerful king of the snakes, and is said to have the ability to grant boons to those who please him.
In Hindu mythology, Vasuki is most famous for being used as a rope by the gods and demons during the great churning of the ocean. In this story, the gods and demons were trying to churn the ocean in order to obtain the elixir of life. In order to do this, they needed a strong rope to stir the waters. Vasuki offered to be the rope, and was wrapped around Mount Mandara, which was used as the churning rod.
In Buddhist mythology, Vasuki is associated with the concept of wisdom. He is said to have been present at the time of the Buddha’s enlightenment, and offered words of wisdom to the Buddha. Vasuki is also said to be the guardian of the northern direction, and is sometimes depicted on the walls of temples, protecting the entrance from evil spirits.
Overall, Vasuki is a powerful and respected serpent god in Hindu and Buddhist mythology, known for his wisdom and strength.
God Hermes – Greek Mythology
In Greek mythology, the god Hermes, messenger of the gods, was often depicted with a caduceus, a staff entwined with two snakes. This symbol represented his role as a messenger and guide, as well as his association with wisdom and knowledge.
Hermes is the Greek god of commerce, thieves, and travelers. He is the son of Zeus and the Pleiad Maia, and is the messenger of the gods. Hermes is often depicted as a young man with winged sandals and a winged hat, carrying a caduceus, which is a staff entwined with two snakes.
Hermes is known for his quick thinking and clever tricks. In one famous story, he helped Apollo win a bet by stealing some of Apollo’s cattle. In another, he helped Perseus defeat the Gorgon Medusa by giving him a pair of winged sandals and a magical bag to carry her head in.
Hermes is also the patron god of travelers, and is said to protect travelers from harm and guide them on their journeys. He is often invoked by travelers before setting out on a journey, and is also associated with the crossroads, where travelers must make important decisions about which direction to take. Overall, Hermes is an important and well-known figure in Greek mythology, known for his cleverness and his role as a messenger and protector of travelers.
Serpent Jörmungandr – Norse Mythology
In Norse mythology, Jörmungandr is a giant serpent who is said to encircle the entire world. He is the son of the trickster god Loki and the giantess Angrboda. He is one of the three children of Loki, who are said to cause great trouble for the gods.
Jörmungandr is so large that he is able to encircle the world and grasp his own tail. He is said to be so venomous that his mere breath is more than enough to poison the air and the sea. Despite his fearsome reputation, Jörmungandr is not necessarily seen as evil. Rather, he is seen as a force of nature, like a storm or an earthquake, that must be respected and feared.
In Norse mythology, Jörmungandr plays a key role in the events leading up to the end of the world, known as Ragnarok. It is believed that at Ragnarok, Jörmungandr will be unleashed from the ocean and will do battle with the thunder god Thor. And Thor will finally slay Jörmungandr, but will only be able to take nine steps before collapsing and dying from the serpent’s poison. Overall, Jörmungandr is a powerful and feared figure in Norse mythology, associated with the end of the world and the forces of nature.
God Quetzalcoatl – Mesoamerican Mythology
In Mesoamerican mythology, the feathered serpent god Quetzalcoatl was a powerful deity associated with wind, sky, and fertility. Quetzalcoatl was often depicted as a serpent with feathers, and was also considered as the creator of the human race.
Quetzalcoatl is a Mesoamerican deity, worshipped by the ancient Aztecs and other cultures in the region. He is often depicted as a feathered serpent, and is associated with the wind, the sky, and the planet Venus.
Quetzalcoatl is an important figure in Mesoamerican mythology and religion, and is often seen as a creator god. In some traditions, he is said to have created the world along with the other gods. In others, he is said to have brought the gift of knowledge and culture to humanity, teaching people how to build cities, grow crops, and create art.
Quetzalcoatl is also associated with the concept of duality and balance. He is often depicted as a god of both light and darkness, good and evil, life and death. This dual nature is reflected in his role as the morning and evening star, as well as his association with the wind, which can be both life-giving and destructive. Overall, Quetzalcoatl is a complex and important figure in Mesoamerican mythology, known for his association with the wind, the sky, and the planet Venus, as well as his role as a creator god and his dual nature.
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