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Hephaestus – God of the Forge

18 Jun 2017 17:21 #1 by ARLewis
ARLewis ► Hephaestus – God of the Forge
In my travels in the Afterlife, I’ve come across a forge out in the ether. I’ve also seen a volcano as it was erupting. I’ve even come across a gaping wound in the earth and had to find a way across the liquid earth oozing from it. A god named Hephaestus either owns or has had a hand in their creation.

Known as Vulcan by the Romans, Hephaestus, the Greek god of the Forge, metalworking, blacksmithing, and of course fire, is one of the major gods of the Greek pantheon. Thought to be the son of the gods Zeus and Hera, there is a possibility that he was instead born of Hera on her own in response to her husband Zeus’ infidelity or possibly even from pure jealousy. In either case, Hephaestus is the only god to be born deformed or ugly. Hera cast him down from Mount Olympus in disgust when he was born and it took a whole day for Hephaestus to fall to Earth. When he finally hit the ground he broke his left leg and foot, neither of which healed properly. How he was deformed beforehand that made Hera throw him down to earth is unclear, but he is always depicted with his left leg twisted in some way. He was raised by a sea-nymph named Thetis in an underground grotto where he eventually developed his skill with manipulating metals with fire after being fascinated by an un-extinguished coal from a fisherman’s fire.

Often depicted with a blacksmith’s hammer, Hephaestus is known to have slaved away at his forge to create many of the great items of power that the Olympians used. From Hermes’ winged helmet and sandals to Aphrodite’s girdle, from the great Chariot of the Sun to Eros’ bow and arrows, Hephaestus’ hand can be seen. Eventually, he made a golden throne that he sent to his mother Hera up on Olympus. When she sat in it, she found she could not move at all. The only one who was able to persuade Hephaestus to free her was the god of wine and revelry, Dionysus; and only after he got the blacksmith drunk. Because Hephaestus freed his mother, he is the only exile from Olympus that was ever allowed to return.

After his return to Olympus, Hephaestus married the goddess of beauty and love, Aphrodite, by decree from Zeus. She thought he was too ugly and deformed and did not want the marriage. This caused her eye to fall upon and to have multiple trysts with the god of war, Ares; an affair which Hephaestus discovered with the help of Helios, the Sun. The blacksmith captured the lovers in an invisible net and dragged them back to Olympus. While Hephaestus and Aphrodite did have children, her most famous child actually came from the affair with Ares; appropriately it was Eros, the god of desire and lust.

When traveling the Afterlife, if ever you find yourself near or around fire, or possibly a volcano, do keep in mind that the god of the forge had his hand in it. Whether used as a weapon, as protection, or even to create something new, give due respect to He who forged it first. For one does not wish to bring the wrath of Forge and be melted into the very metal you are trying to craft.


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