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Ishhara

Ishhara

Also known as: Ishkhara

Pronounced: Ish-hara; the second “h” is hard and guttural.

Origin: Mesopotamia

In Western Asia, scorpions are traditional symbols of romance, their sting analogous to Cupid’s arrows. Ishhara is Mesopotamia’s ancient erotic scorpion goddess of love. There are various theories as to her true identity:

• Ishhara may be a path of Inanna-Ishtar.

• Ishhara may be the original Ishtar before she merged with Inanna.

• Ishhara may be a completely unique, independent spirit whose identity was subsumed by Inanna-Ishtar.

According to the Babylonian version of the zodiac, Ishhara may be viewed in the sky as the constellation Scorpio, zodiac sign of sex and the reproductive organs. Ishhara has dominion over the various issues associated with the zodiac sign, Scorpio, and the astrological Eighth House. Ishhara was invoked for protection, love, romance, and in erotic rites. She was extremely popular in the region that is now modern Syria and Turkey, where she was sometimes considered the wife of the important deity Dagon.

Iconography: Images of scorpions remain very popular among traditional North African and Middle Eastern henna artisans for whom the animal represents fierce protection and erotic love.

Sacred animals: Scorpions, snakes

See also: Inanna-Ishtar; Selket

From the Encyclopedia of Spirits: The Ultimate Guide to the Magic of Fairies, Genies, Demons, Ghosts, Gods & Goddesses– Written by :Judika Illes Copyright © 2009 by Judika Illes.

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