The Tech Support Metaphor for Archetypes

Here’s how I (a former tech) imagine it working: being a god that fits an archetype could be seen as something similar to working tech support. Lots of people call in wanting help, and they frequently don’t care that your name is Katherine or Tanisha or Amir. They’re calling Tech Support Lady/Guy, and that’s literally all you are to them.

So it is with people who call out for the Love Goddess or the Trickster or the Great Mother. They’re calling the divine tech support line, and they’re hoping to reach someone with the right specialization. And so if they’re calling on, say, the Trickster, sometimes they’ll get Loki, and sometimes they’ll get Coyote, and sometimes they’ll get Anansi. And if they call in enough, like with real tech support, the person will get some case notes on their spiritual “file” that may direct them to one person in particular, or away from one person. “Transfer directly to Odin,” or “Isis isn’t accepting this person’s calls; get someone else to do it.” (Sadly, we never got to do that second one in real tech support. Being a god has its perks.)

So someone can call on the Love Goddess and get Aphrodite one day, and Inanna the next. It doesn’t mean They’re the same goddess, but because They both fit that archetype, They’re both open to receiving those calls, and neither of Them had a strong enough relationship with the person in question to call dibs. That might change as time passes and the person keeps calling on Them.

To continue this metaphor, when I was Tech Support Lady, I’d do my job to the best of my ability unless a caller was actively being a dick to me. Even the exceptionally clueless ones would be carefully and gently helped as much as possible, and I’d frequently go above and beyond what I was “supposed” to be doing if I liked a caller and knew I could help them out. But once I was off the call, I was D-O-N-E. If they didn’t call back, I didn’t worry about their internet problems; I just got on with my job. But for my friends and relatives? Assuming we’re on good terms, and they’re not only calling me when something’s broken but are actually someone I enjoy spending time with, I will move heaven and earth. Hours spent troubleshooting their modems? Sure. Talking to other techs for them and cutting through the corporate-mandated bullshit? Absolutely. Checking in days or weeks later to make sure everything’s still working? Of course. Because to those people, I’m not Tech Support Lady. I’m Jaqui. They like Jaqui, and so Jaqui likes them.

Likewise, if you want your relationship with your gods to be more than “person I help out and get offerings from,” it helps to look beyond the archetype, to get to know all the ways that (for instance) Hela is not Hades is not Ereshkigal. The more you approach Them as individuals, as real and living beings who you want to be part of your life, the more They’ll rain blessings on you, even when you don’t ask, because that’s what They do for people They like.