Mano (mythology)

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In Sami mythology, Mano, Manno, Aske, or Manna is a personification of the moon as a female deity.

The Sami worldview was animistic in nature, with shamanistic features, and in that worldview their divinities occupied important positions. Every force of nature was associated with a god or goddess, and sources of livelihood were believed to be safeguarded by beings in the spiritual world that could be persuaded to be more favourable.[1]

Like other nature-deities, the goddess Mano was seen as unpredictable and dangerous. She was worshiped around the time of the new moon, especially around the Winter Solstice, and during that time it was taboo to make any kind of noise.[2]

Christian missionaries and priests normally did not understand these Pagan concepts but regarded them as Satanic. The Sami were forcibly converted to Christianity and shamanistic practices forbidden.[1]

Sami spirituality brought unearthliness—the spiritual world—to the Sami. The shaman was the intermediary between this world and the spiritual. Some Sami shamans had Noaide drums, and at least one such drum with a Mano moon symbol has been discovered.[3]

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