Goddess TycheCoven of the Goddess
I am the Goddess of Fortune and Fate. I am Tyche of the Greeks and Fortuna of the Romans. My name Tyche comes from the word tynchano which means made to happen. I am from the time of the Titans who ruled long before the mythos of the Olympians came to be popular. My parents Tethys and Okeanos, I am an Oceanid and I draw upon the wisdom of the waters. Some say I am the eldest sister of the Three Fates or the Moiria, but I tell you I am all three, Klotho, Atropos, and Lachesis, for all three make me, Tyche.
It is funny for compared to most Goddesses of mythology I have not great story, no myth, but yet had one of the largest cult followings among the Greeks and Romans. For my existence is based upon a concept. A concept that both intrigued and inspired the ancient Greek poets and philosophers, that represented not only fortune, but also luck, success and chance. It is said that the Theban Lyric poet Pidar is said to have originated the worship of me when he celebrated me in verse. Through these verses I was given the title Pharopolis or Protectress of the Cities and towards the end of the 5th Century B.C. I was believed to be the ruler of worldy affairs, sometimes even given more reverence that the almighty Zeus. Another famous philosopher, Anaxagoras said that I, Fortune, is a cause unknown to human reason; for some things come by Necessity, some by fatal Destiny and others by deliberate counsel.
When the Romans came to rule and I became known as Fortuna, I was in every city for all of Rome wanted good fortune. As Fortuna Augusta I was associated specifically with the luck of the Emperor, for it was the statue of me, Tyche Fortuna that the Emperor passed on to his successor. Altars to me under this name are widespread.
As Fortuna Balnearis “Fortuna of the Baths” I watched over Roman soldiers in foreign lands. Altars with this inscription were set up in military bathhouses, often with the further inscriptions Fortuna Salutaris “Fortuna of health and well-being” and Fortuna Redux “Fortuna the home-bringer” – important aspects obviously on the minds of soldiers in far-flung lands. There was Fortuna Privata “Fortuna of the Individual” as opposed to Fortuna Publica “Fortuna of the People” or Fortuna Romana who looked after the fate of the whole Roman population. Even after the Empire had been converted to Christianity, this aspect of the me was still worshipped, and Constantine built a temple to me in Constantinople, the first “purely Christian” city. Other aspects of me are Fortuna Virgo “the Virgin Fortune” in whose honor girls dedicated their robes upon marriage, and also Fortuna Muliebris “Fortuna of Women”, who watched over a woman her whole life.
As the Roman Empire moved, I began to be identified with other local Goddesses such as Astarte, Isis and Kybele. I am found on spheres of art on jewels, public monuments, amulets, seals and coins and even some architecture. During the political and economic changes during the Hellenic and Roman Periods, my significance was increased until I was perceived as a superior force ruling the universe and human lives. The spread of my cult was an administrative tool used by the governing body to bring unification of various ethnic origins and cults into a uniform framework.
In the coastal cities I am known as a Sea Goddess who protects the ships and ports. I have been found in the Temples of Gaza and there are amazing stories about me being sacrificed to a sea monster that are comparable with the story of Jonah in the Hebrews Bible.
But as the Greek deities became part of Roman mythos and then the Roman mythos became lost in the vast movement of the Christian political movement of the Roman Church, I became not the superior ruler of the universe but mere chance and carnival attraction with my wheel of fortune or the games of chance played with dice that are attributed to me. I am know known as the imbalanced Goddesses who would rather juggle balls than hand out wealth from my cornucopia of wealth. Forgotten is the doublesided rudder that set men on their paths and changed course on a whim, or the wheel I steered which was the balance and symbol of the turning and altering of fate.
Yet I am still Tyche, Fortune now known as fate, karma, chance, for does not one event in one’s life not effect the next, does not the spinning continue as one grows. Though my name is lost my concept remains. For I am the Fates, the Moirai, that unexpected event that changes the course of your mapped out path. Can you adjust to what I give you, can you become what you need to be even when my kindness turns unexpectedly harsh? Yet over all of this time do you not now know that your choices are what alter your fate, that even when I throw you a curb, or turn sharply, your choice can still give you the Fortune you desire, only maybe you get their by another path.
Work with me in your life, take chance and do not become another robot of politics, economics and media direction. Ride the waves of my sea, know the wisdom of the water and know my sisters in their stages to reach the dreams and goals you aspire to.
Know the concept of Tyche and incorporate me in you life. Expect the unexpected and rejoice with the outcome.