Top 9 Gambling Gods & Their Unique Stories
Not everybody can rule over the gambling world.
Throughout time, all great societies have assigned the realm of chance to gambling gods with complicated, tumultuous characters, who are remembered to this day.
CasinoAlpha’s dive into mythology!
We’ll delve into the lore and traits of renowned deities that humanity envisioned as gods of gambling. We included civilisations from the ancient Aztecs to Indian, Norse, African mythologies, or the classic Greeks.
Ready to discover their stories and what other aspects of life have been connected to good fortune?
Macuilxochitl: Vengeful, yet Sensitive
The Aztec Flower Prince, Macuilxochitl, is painted as a sensitive, refined creature in charge of all finery in life. He is the patron of music, the visual arts, poetry, lust, fine food, and, of course, among the top ancient gods of gambling.
His association with overindulgence in life’s pleasures appears in many legends.
For instance, he was part of Centzon Tōtōchtin, a group of four-hundred rabbits of divine origin.
The sacred rabbits, not all of them gods of gambling, loved to meet up for frequent drunkenness and debauchery.
Five is Aztec for excess
The number 5 is associated with excess in the Aztec folklore, and Macuilxochitl was often referred to as “Five Flower.”
Don’t cross him!
But Macuilxochitl and his fellow gods were the only ones allowed to overindulge in life’s most extraordinary gifts.
He maintained a strong reputation for punishing mortals who engaged in excess.
If you gave yourself to depravity or over-gambling, especially during fast periods, you were likely to get haemorrhoids, venereal diseases, or boils from the gambling god.
Never gamble in excess!
Gambling compulsion is a severe disorder that develops if we are not mindful of our habits. Our experts have prepared an arsenal of gambling addiction resources for you to recognise, preempt, and combat the disorder.
Lofn: The Goddess of Love, Who Gambles
She is delicate, comforting, and loving: the ultimate expression of a common human need for closeness, acceptance, and gentle healing.
Appearing in a 13th-century Icelandic manuscript as the goddess who heals unrequited love, Lofn is also the only one who can bring together couples. She can offer support even if other Gods, rival tribes, or societal norms forbid them.
Lofn means permission and praise
Also used as a word for woman or goddess in skaldic poetry, she allows love to happen in many ways. She’s described as being fond of outcasts, unloved, or simply hopeful.
Take that chance!
Lofn is not at all a passive goddess.
Lofn is often portrayed as quite involved with her subjects and defending the oppressed. She encourages those who want to be themselves and follow their dreams, bestowing good luck to those who gamble responsibly.
Legends say that she expects the same from her subjects.
She is believed to become angry and bring about bad luck if you fail to take a chance. She warns against choosing comfort over fulfilling your dreams or discriminating against others.
Offerings for the Norse goddess of love
Lofn accepts gambling symbols such as cards, chips, or dice. She is also said to ask for signs of alternative love or songs in exchange for good luck. The goddess is associated with lavender.
Today, people still believe in gambling rituals. For instance, some gamblers often pull an extra chair at their table and adapt their games to include an additional player. In this way, Lofn could join the game.
Papa Legba: The Spiritual Gambler
In a straw hat, the old man leaning on a cane by a gloomy doorway belongs to the Haitian Voodoo gambling gods. He usually dwells around gates and at crossroads.
His features and associations
His limp indicates that he walks among the living and the spirits at the same time, like a rugged, poor guardian.
He is Papa Legba. Having mastered speech and communication, he knows all the languages in the world, including that of spirits.
His realms are security and uncertainty, so people have often invoked him during games of chance.
Trickery and respect
Beyond his ethereal and frightening appearance, legends also uncover a more laid-back Papa Legba. He’s known for his love of riddles, his affection for dogs, and his trickery nature, making him an ally to gamblers.
The various myths about this god reveal that the key to getting Papa Legba on your side when gambling is to show him respect.
However, according to many stories, he doesn’t ask for much proof. All you need to do is offer him a drink or answer his riddle correctly.
It would be best if you showed respect by offering him a drink to convince him you deserve good fortune in gambling.
Geifon: The Norse Dealer of Destiny
Another Norse gambling goddess is also associated with hard work and agriculture despite the usual connotations of gambling and unreliable game results.
Geifon, who rules over luck, wealth, and gambling, is usually depicted as a young and determined maiden or the Nordic allegorical mother.
Geifon inspires many paintings and poems and appears in countless Scandinavian stories.
Her influence was quite significant:
- Geifon is believed to have created Zealand, a land where the souls of all women who died young could rest freely and unbothered.
- As she’s the goddess of good fortune, so, of course, her descendants became the Swedish kings.
According to the stories, to earn this goddess’ favour at gambling, people had to be honest and fair at the game and in their lives.
Thoth: The Wise Gambler
This figure belonging to the Egyptian gods of gambling connects chance games with wisdom. Thoth brought himself into existence, without the help of parents or other gods.
He rules over intellectual and spiritual aspects of Egyptian life:
- He is the creator of speech, languages, and writing;
- Often, Thoth is depicted as the advisor of other major Egyptian Gods;
- Toth rules on the souls of those who die;
- He’s also the Moon God, and an official representative to the Sun God, Ra.
As the God of the Moon, he reigns over the dream world and the hidden facets of the soul. Toth is the one to make a clear distinction between what is merely an illusion and what is real.
A master of shadows and the unseen, it is no wonder that he was also described as the creator of chance games. Decidedly, Thoth is among the prominent Egyptian gods of gambling.
Games of chance in Ancient Egypt
Gambling was an activity many Egyptians took as part of daily life. Archaeologists have discovered scenes of games gods and gambling activities on many Egyptian tombs, where the symbol of Toth also appeared.
A preferred Egyptian chance game was Senet, which involved strategy and luck and appealed to both mortals and the gods of gambling.
As the name means “passing” or “afternoon,” Egyptians believed that Toth used this game to decide the fates of those who passed on.
The legend behind the gods
Thoth played Senet against the Moon and won so that the goddess Nut could fulfil her wish to become pregnant.
Nezha: Sadness & Sacrifice
Nezha, among the gambling gods renowned in China, is often depicted as a rebellious albeit passionate adolescent. His lore revolves around reconciling with his parents.
Due to his strong feelings and sense of devotion and honour, Nezha often fought dragons, emperors, and military commanders. Essentially, this god rebelled against all oppressive authority.
However, he often leads these battles for the sake of his friends and justice. Nezha committed the ultimate sacrifice to save his family and his community.
His relationship with gambling
The rebellious teenage god is also characterised by mischief and trickery.
Youthful, Nezha is also described as a humoristic character, in stark contrast to his dramatic destiny. He’s amongst the revered Chinese gods who protect those who gamble.
It is said that:
Nezha reveals lottery numbers in advance to gamblers he likes.
Nohoipili: The Corrupted Teacher
Nohoipili is the Great Gambler of Navajo. According to certain legends, he created chance games and arrived on earth to teach humanity how to gamble.
Among all gambling gods, he was initially depicted as a radiant and playful character. This trait suited him as the son of the Sun God of many ancient pueblos of Northern New Mexico.
Nohoipili was also very bright and benevolent, as his initial desire was to elevate people’s intelligence and analytical capabilities.
The banishment of an addicted God
However, no mortal could match his mind, as he was seen as the most skilled of all gods of gambling.
Very soon, Nohoipili became addicted to defeating people in gambling and turned to greed and cruelty. He would force people to play him and often demanded women and children as payment.
His price to pay
Such endeavours angered the other gods, who saw the injustice in the situation. They eventually bestowed a godly intelligence to a simple person from Navajo who finally defeated Nohoipili.
After the defeat, he was banished to the sky, where, surprisingly, he received new people to govern.
An origin tale
The legend of Nohoipili is a Mexican genesis myth. It explains the rivalry between the Mexicans (Nohoipili’s people) and the Navajos.
Lakshmi: A Passionate Moral Compass
Lakshmi can be translated as the one who guides you to your dreams. Revered as a fundamental Mother Goddess in Shaktism, she represents the divine energy and wife of Vishnu, the Hindu Supreme Being.
Together, they create the Universe, protect it, and transform it.
Often painted in elegant clothing of intense red and golden hues, Lakshmi represents wealth, prosperity, power, and beauty.
Although in the writings about most Hindu gods gambling was portrayed as harmful, she was primarily known for protecting honest players.
However, her granting of good luck comes with an essential condition: that you steer clear from greed and arrogance, never losing sight of your humanity.
Lakshmi does not tolerate bad behaviour in humans or other gods.
Upset by the arrogance of Indra, the god of war, she fled the world, hiding in the sea-deep for over a thousand years. With her, she took all the good luck away from the gods.
Consequently, the world turned dark and vulnerable to armies of demons, according to some legends.
However, she returned when she saw the gods struggling and correcting their behaviour. Once again in the world, Lakshmi saved humanity and banished the demons.
The Lotus token
A symbol of Lakshmi is the Lotus flower. It is said arrived back into the world upon its petals, where she stored all the good fortune and beauty.
Hermes: The Rebellious Player
While Hermes is employed with the grave task of being the Greek Pantheon’s messenger, he is described as a happy-go-lucky character.
He travels quickly between Mount Olympus and the human world in winged sandals and a helmet, even guiding souls to the Underworld.
He may help or confuse you
Renowned as a trickster god, he often interferes with mortals who gamble, either helping them or getting in their way. Hermes is the most well-liked of all Greek gods of gambling.
The duality between responsibility and play shines through in the elements Hermes is credited with having invented: the alphabet, fire, and dice.
In this way, he resembles other gambling gods, like Thoth or Lofn.
Gambling runs in his family
Some stories interpret that there are other gods of gambling or associated with it. Hermes’ father, Zeus, Hades, and Poseidon decided which parts of the world to rule by throwing dice.
Some experts argue that the decisions of Greek gods were often described as being left to chance or fortune. However, there are no known stories of Greek gods with gambling addictions.
A continued superstition
Today, people still invoke Hermes before a game of chance or consult gambling horoscopes before engaging in a game. While such rituals can be pleasant, it’s essential to stay in control of your budget and habits!
Gambling Gods To Remember: 3 Honourable Mentions
Folklore worldwide abounds with examples of complex deities involved in human activities, such as gambling.
Let’s hear your mythology opinions!
Do you know of other gambling deities or fantastical creatures that mingle with any concepts surrounding gambling, luck or fate? Let us know your input in the comment section and we will update our sections as we go. CasinoAlpha values the input of their readers and wants to expand together with you!
If you enjoy myths or are drawn to how culturally and psychologically intricate they are, you may also want to discover the following gambling gods:
- Dazhbog: the Slavic gambling god, also known as the “giver of wealth”;
- Fortuna: the Roman horn of plenty, often represented as a beautiful woman holding the ancestral Wheel of Plenty;
- Kangiten: The Japanese god of gamblers, who also protects geishas and actors, with a particular taste for art, beauty, and intense emotions.
We have seen how the human mind envisioned gambling to be the dominion of intellectual, greedy, fierce, stable, and pure-hearted figures with elaborate backstories and social roles.
Our modern world might have moved on from such stories into concrete life, technology, and pragmatism. However, their lessons remain relevant.
One common denominator: they all warned gamblers to play responsibly!
We are not experts in either sociology, myth, history, or psychology. But we used our varied expertise to research and create a top with the most renowned gambling gods and their lore.
Our CasinoAlpha team has researched this article using reliable, verified sources such as academic journals on myth and sociology, as well as studies in religion and history:
- BBC – Religions
- Classical Mythology Stories Explained (timelessmyths.com)
- View of Chronicle and Epic, or the Introductions to the Mahāvaṃsa and the Mahābhārata
- Mythology, Cosmology, and Symbolism of Ancient Egypt, Part 1 (pacificapost.com)
- Mythopedia – Encyclopedia of Mythology
- The 13 Most Important Aztec Gods and Goddesses
- Norse Mythology: Gods, Creatures and Concepts
- Roman Myths and Religion
- The Role of Mythology as a Cultural Identity and a Cultural Heritage
We also employed our professional knowledge about the gambling industry to critically analyse all the information we acquired to create this article.
Our professional insights are based on in-depth and pertinent information about the gambling market. They also extend towards the multifaceted ways in which the industry relates to other topics, which we explore in our blog topics.