God is a Woman

This vase tells the tale of an exceptional deity among the pantheons of ancient gods. Amaterasu is one of the few female solar gods. Her full name means ‘Great Divinity Illuminating Heaven’ and she is one of the principal gods in the Shinto religion. You can check out another vase inspired by a sun god here.

raku vase
Amaterasu – Raku Pottery Vase

You can see more images of the raku pottery vase Amaterasu here.

Here we tell one of the more interesting stories of this great beauty that involve her petulant and mischievous brother, Susanoo, a defiled crafting room, a goddess in hiding, 800 plotting gods, more roosters than Colonel Saunders would know what to do with, a partial strip tease and a clever trick.

Susanoo must have been going through his teenager years in this story, because he was out of control, messing with the rice fields, and his sister’s home. Amaterasu had finally had enough when he decided to throw a flayed horse into her weaving hall. Apparently she took her craft pretty seriously, so she decided to hide in a cave.

This of course presented a problem. I did mention that Amaterasu was the Shinto sun god. Things got pretty dark at this point in the story, with the world being plunged into darkness and all. This was such a big problem that 800 myriads of gods got together to sort out a solution to coax Amaterasu out of the cave.

Can you imagine 800 myriads of gods searching for roosters? The gods assembled all the cocks they could find in front of the cave and propped up a mirror and some jewelry in front of the cave. Another goddess, Amenouzume wanted to get the crowd of gods going, so she turned over a tub to act as her impromptu stage, partially disrobed and started dancing.

Amaterasu – Raku Pottery Vase, Details

The gods were delighted to see the show and were laughing and having a good time, and Amaterasu was puzzled as to how everyone could be so happy while the world was in darkness.

To complete their plan, the gods told Amaterasu that there was a god more illustrious and beautiful than she was outside of the cave. Both shocked and curious, she peaked outside of the cave and is if on cue, all those roosters started to crow, and then she saw her reflection in the mirror and was thus lured out of the cave.

Amaterasu, there is no god or vase more beautiful than you. If you want to find out and check out more vases and their stories, you can do so here. What do you think of this vase and story?


    1. Thank you so much for your kind comment. I hope you are well and your week is off to a great start!

    1. haha! Thank you for your punny comment πŸ˜‰ I hope your week is off to a wonderful start!

    1. Thank you so much! That comment makes me smile πŸ˜‰ I hope your week is off to a wonderful start!

    1. It is more the case that my vases tell a story, and this was the story that this particular piece whispered in my ear. Religion, mythology and the gods have been inspiring art throughout the ages. I hope your week is off to a great start and thanks for the question.

      1. I can see the symbolism in doing so and I really do appreciate you sharing that link. I love learning more about spirituality in different cultures. I hope you are having a great day!

    1. Thank you for your kind comment and taking the time to read the story. I hope your week is off to a wonderful start.

    1. Thank you for your kind comment! He is fantastic, such a soulful singer! I hope you have a great week ahead!

    1. Thank you so much for your kind comment Judy, it is very much appreciated. I hope your week is off to a wonderful start!

  1. I love the crackaleur (?) effect with the turquoise and coppery gold streaks on the vase- and the story is worthy of an anime film by Studio Ghibli!

    1. I think you just wrote down one of my new favourite words to describe my raku pottery πŸ˜‰ I really appreciate your comment, it made me smile on a Monday morning πŸ˜‰ I hope your week is off to a great start.

      1. I do what I can! Yeah I think crackaleur is a real word- I remember it from my picture framing days- I think it was mentioned in a book on faux finishes for hand made frames- u would apply a fast drying paint or varnish over a slow drying one and get an effect similar to your gorgeous pottery.

      2. I love the word! Thanks for bringing that one into my vocabulary! Ironically, I think I may have inadvertently used that technique on a frame many moons ago!

      3. I’ve accidentally used it on a painting when I tried to varnish it- oops. I just thought to myself there are no mistakes in art- just opportunities πŸ™‚

      4. That could be a very cool effect! Did you ever do it again on a piece on purpose? I find sometimes accidents are discoveries in my own art work!

      5. Not yet but I have a couple pieces floating around in my head that it would work on- now I just need time 2 make them!

      6. That is a story I am all too familiar with – having time to make the things in one’s head!

  2. I’m in love with the vase! I did a small amount of raku once upon a time in college, it was great fun.
    The nearly translucent turquoise edge of the vase at the opening is uplifting. I see it inviting the light into the cave. What a great story! Is this based on an actual old myth or one that you’ve created?

    1. Thank you! I wish I had started raku in college. From the first firing, I fell deeply in love with the process. Do you have any of those pieces that you made?
      The story is based on an actual myth that I editorialized and retold. I have a bit of a thing for myths and stories of old from the cultures of the world.

    1. Thank you so much Krishna for your kind comment and wishes. I hope your weekend was full of blessings and beauty and they just keep on coming!

    1. Thank you πŸ˜‰ I hope your week is off to a great start and the writing is flowing πŸ˜‰

    1. Thank you so much Josh! I really appreciate you taking the time to check them out. I owe you an email πŸ˜‰

  3. This vase and story really spoke to me. Thank you for sharing it and for what you do. You are an inspiration!

  4. I love the colors in that vase because they bring to mind azure skies and magenta leaves. I am already in the mood for autumn. Stunning vase and well-penned narrative.

    1. Thank you Eugenia! I am in agreement with you about being ready for the Fall. It has been a pretty intense summer for me and the seasonal change should help me leave some of that behind.

    1. Thank you so much for your very kind comment. I really appreciate you taking the time. I hope you are having a wonderful week.

  5. God is a Woman is a fantastic title and must have had every female reader panting in excitement to get to your blog. And it was well worth it, when I got there. A good read, and some lovely images. And I learned something too. So, ten out of ten for this blog.

    1. Thank you so much for your very kind comment! I have to say that name just sort of came to me, because it went well with the story. It was only afterwards that I realized I had stumbled upon such an interesting title. I am glad the post lived up to the excitement for you πŸ˜‰
      I hope your week is going well.

  6. If I had a credit card( I know is weird for you and most people to think that I donΒ΄t) I would definetelly buy your product, what an artist. IΒ΄ll get there though, hard times in Spain now but IΒ΄ll make it work to buy you a vase, specially for my mother that she loves it. That would be the surprise for her of the century if I did it.

    1. Thank you so much for your comment. I hope that these hard times will soon be a distant memory for you. I think it is beautiful that you would like to do something special for your mom. Sending positive vibes from Canada.

  7. Interesting thoughts on male versus female. I am always amused at those who automatically assign God a male relationship. I support women and am ready to argue the point. I also do not think God has any sexual nature other than being God. (If that makes sense.) The other area that I have a problem with is assuming (you know what I mean by that word) that they can speak for God. I have had two recent conversations about that and one with a “minister” who told me that being gay is by choice. He was not pleased with my reply. I could have actually irritated him further than I did by talking about apostolic succession. He doesn’t fall in the line of apostolic succession. But then after telling him (after he told me what the bible says about homosexuals) that the bible was written by men (and probably women as well although the church won’t admit to it which is curious as one pope was supposed to be female …. but that was covered up). Oh well

    1. Thank you for your very interesting and thoughtful commentary. I also believe that God is beyond gender (which I think is in alignment of what you are saying!).
      At this point, I don’t think anyone can speak for God. I believe that God may ‘speak’ to people, but that is part of their personal relationship with God. I don’t think God as I understand things cares about race, gender or sexuality since God made us all different and beautiful in our own way. It’s too bad so many people care so much about these differences. I think God only cares if we are being compassionate to ourselves and others,
      You are referring to Pope Joan! There was a lesbian bar that went by that name that I knew of πŸ˜‰

    1. Thank you for your kind comment! My pottery is so much nicer to look at than I am πŸ˜‰ I like my work to speak for myself. I need to go over and read those posts, because you have captured my imagination!

      1. So you are humble as well as creating beautiful pottery and poems ?!
        You got me even more curious now.
        I also like your name, because I currently work on the alchemy of the soul.

        Thanks for visiting me. Yeah read the articles
        they are the work of decades of contemplation, search and discussions.
        The most difficult part was to be able to do the splits to reach believers of all kinds (including atheists) alike.

      2. thank you for your kind words! I think a big part of life is work on alchemy of the soul, which is part of why I have chosen the name for the studio. Your articles are very insightful and well crafted.

  8. Dear Alchemistpottery,
    I just wrote a comment containing two links and assume that it was eaten by your spam-filter.
    Just telling you to check out your bin for my compliments.

    (I bet you never thought to find love in your trash πŸ˜‰

  9. Talking about the ancient gods made me remember the fabulous Greek vase painting is it black vases anyway superb drawings of Greek heroes all around them I’m sure you know what ones I mean. Pottery is such a great art form.

    1. I do know the ones you mean! They are pretty amazing pieces. I love pottery, it is such a primal art form. I hope you have a great day!

  10. That vase is INCREDIBLE, and your ingenious idea of combining Bill Withers and Amaterasu is absolutely mindblowing. Exactly the same idea I had behind my “An unlikely Synthesis” category, combining two things that seem far apart, but work together perfectly πŸ™‚ Much love,


    1. Thank you so much for your very kind words! Many things that seem far apart are interconnected, like most things if you can follow the thread that binds them. I hope you you are having a wonderful start to your day full of happiness and love πŸ˜‰

    1. Thank you so much for your kind comment, which is also beautiful for me to read. I hope you are having a wonderful week so far!

  11. The vase is stunning! What an interesting story to read. I like that inspiration for art can come from anywhere. I find mythology fascinating as it tells stories about creation, religion, art, love, and anything else you can think of. Keep at it, your work is gorgeous!

  12. Great tale reminds me of Narcissus as he peered in the pond here sort of like Persephone and her mom they plunged the world into ❄️; the cocks’ crow and the accompanying laughter piqued the Shinto queen’s humanoid curiosity. A quality that makes us just as natural as other animals in our Biosphere. Chapter 14? Watching for!πŸ™πŸ•β™’οΈ

  13. Great stuff! I am doing cat fostering and I have had a gods theme in the names. At the moment I have a cat called Ama.
    I checked and Ama is also a principal feminine god that created the world with his masculine counterpart, as it most always is. But a double-god cat! DemiCat

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