The Great Goddess was the powerful all-mother, champion of birth and growth as well as death. She was the transcendence of the feminine, the all-powerful source girls quested to become. Benevolent and cruel by turns, giving and withholding the crops that fed all people, she was perfectly poised between the world of life and death.

I, mother of the universe, mistress of all the elements, first born of the ages, highest of the gods, queen of the shades, first of those who dwell in heaven, representing in one shape all the gods and goddesses. My will controls the shining heights of heaven, the health-giving sea-winds, and the mournful silence of hell; the entire world worships my single godhead in a thousand shapes, with diverse rites, and under many different names.

--Apuleius, The Golden Ass, trans. Robert Graves (New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1951), 268.

She is Gaia, Demeter, Rhea. Devi in all her aspects. Inanna-Ishtar-Asherah. Isis. Cybele. Pachamama. Yum Chenmo, Xi Wang Mu, Kuan Yin. Amaterasu and Fuji. Uli and Haumea. Tlalteutli and Coatlicue. Ala, Bahuba, Mawu, Asase Yaa. Brigid, Freya, The Fairy Queen. And more.