Laima, also known as Laime or Laimas māte, represents fate and luck in Latvian and Lithuanian mythologies. Aside from being the patron of pregnant women, she was also linked to childbirth, marriage and death. Her role is similar to Lakhsmi, a Hindu goddess.
In Latvian mythology
Together with her sisters, Kārta and Dēkla, they were hailed as the trinity of faith goddesses that was comparable to the Norse Norns or the Greek Moirae. Among the three, Laima is the most popular because she makes the final decision in one’s fate.
Laima is associated with the mothers, Dēkla takes care of the children, and Kārta is in-charge with the adult's life. The three goddesses were called the three Laimas since they have similar divinity in different aspects. At the end of the 19th century, hen, sheep, towels or other woven materials were being offered to Laima as a part of birth rituals. These rituals were performed by women in sauna.
In Lithuanian mythology
Laima (goddess of fate) is always mistaken as Laimė (goddess of good fortune) and Laumė (fairy). Laima was been mentioned first by Wilhelm Martini in Laimelea and by Matthäus Prätorius, Jacob Brodowski and Philipp Ruhig.
Laima’s main function is to give a prophecy on how one’s life will take place. In some cases, three laimas will cast conflicting predictions. Nobody can change the final pronouncement once it has been made, not even Laima.
She was also associated to Gegutė (cuckoo), the goddess who was responsible for time and series of seasons. Gegutė can predict how many years a person had to live by the number of her calls. She also knows how a person would live his life in spring. For instance, when a man had no money and heard a cuckoo, he would be poor all year round. The sacred tree of Laima is the linden.