Areas of Influence: Goddess of the hearth. Many Roman homes contained small shrines to the Goddess Vesta as she protected the hearth and home.
She is one of the oldest Roman Goddesses. Her cult dates back to the seventh century B.C. Offerings were made to her at every meal by throwing some of the food into the fire.
Later adopted by the state and became one of the twelve most important Gods and Goddesses known as the Dii Consentes.
Her temple in Rome was round and was sited in the Forum Romanum. This housed not only the "eternal flame," that symbolised the hearth fires for all the Roman people. It also contained many of Rome's important legal documents.
The sacred flame was tended by up to six vestal virgins. These virgins were chosen from the daughters of the ruling classes. They were inspected as young girls to ensure they were healthy and had no physical defects. The Vestal Virgins were expected to serve in the temple for thirty years of their life.
Origins and Genealogy: Although she is likened to Hestia she was not given a distinct personality or parentage. Nor are there any specific myths that are dedicated to her.
Strengths: Welcoming and warm personality.
Weaknesses: Self-sacrificing. The vestal virgins associated with her were not allowed herself to marry or have relationships.
The sacred flame, she was rarely shown with a human form.
Sacred Animal: The Ass.
Festivals: The main festival to this Goddess, the Vestalia took place from 7th-15th June.
She was also celebrated on the Roman's New Years day (March 1st) when her flame was ritually renewed each year.
Greek Equivalent: Hestia.
The Virgin :
This Archetype represents the desire to remain sexually pure and uncorrupted, maintaining your energy for other projects. It can also symbolize a deep desire to create brand new ideas and methods of working.
The shadow Virgin, resists her sexuality due to fear and revolution of sex and the loss of innocence it symbolizes.
I have chosen this archetype for Hestia as her temple attendants, the vestal virgins that had to remain chaste for thirty years.
The Nun is characterized by her intense devotion and dedication to her path. Their work requires great focus and includes not only spiritual paths but artistic and business pursuits. The Nun chooses celibacy to conserve energy for her vital work.
Shadow Nun is removed from everyday reality, introverted and self-righteous.
This Goddess was very devoted to her job as keeper of the hearth flame and fire of the nation.
The Virgin is one of your main Archetypes, if you are continually preserving your vital energies, for spiritual reasons. The Virgin may also represent a desire to explore virgin territory; inventing refreshing, new ideas and ways of doing things in an original way.
On the shadow side, fear and trauma caused by bad past relationship experiences or abuse could be preventing you from exploring your sexuality and experiencing intimacy.
The Nun represents a total devotion to your life's work. She may lead you to success and material riches as she is the archetype of the workaholic, where all your available energy is expended a single area of your life.
The disadvantage of this Archetype is you run the risk of becoming isolated, losing touch with friends and family. You may also become very judgmental of people who don't share your goals and vision.