Celtic Magick

WOTC Extra – Celtic Gods and Goddesses

Celtic & British Isles Graphics

 Celtic Gods and Goddesses

The Druid priests of the Celts did not write down the stories of their gods and goddesses, but instead transmitted them orally, so our knowledge of the early Celtic deities is limited. Romans of the first century B.C. recorded the Celtic myths and then later, after the introduction of Christianity to the British Isles, the Irish monks of the 6th century and Welsh writers later wrote down their traditional stories.

Alator

The Celtic god Alator was associated with Mars, the Roman war god. His name is said to mean “he who nourishes the people”.

Albiorix

The Celtic god Albiorix was associated with Mars as Mars Albiorix. Albiorix is the “king of the world.”

Belenus

Belenus is a Celtic god of healing worshiped from Italy to Britain. The worship of Belenus was linked with the healing aspect of Apollo. The etymology of Beltaine may be connected with Belenus. Belenus is also written: Bel, Belenos, Belinos, Belinu, Bellinus, and Belus.

Borvo

Borvo (Bormanus, Bormo) was a Gallic god of healing springs whom the Romans associated with Apollo. He is depicted with helmet and shield.

Bres

Bres was a Celtic fertility god, the son of the Fomorian prince Elatha and the goddess Eriu. Bres married the goddess Brigid. Bres was a tyrannical ruler, which proved his undoing. In exchange for his life, Bres taught agriculture and made Ireland fertile.

Brigantia

British goddess connected with river and water cults, equated with Minerva, by the Romans and possibly linked with the goddess Brigit.

Brigit

Brigit is the Celtic goddess of fire, healing, fertility, poetry, cattle, and patroness of smiths. Brigit is also known as Brighid or Brigantia and in Christianity is known as St. Brigit or Brigid. She is compared with the Roman goddesses Minerva and Vesta.

Cerridwen

Ceridwen is a Celtic shape-shifting goddess of poetic inspiration. She keeps a cauldron of wisdom. She is the mother of Taliesin.

Cernunnos

Cernunnos is a horned god associated with fertility, nature, fruit, grain, the underworld, and wealth, and especially associated with horned animals like the bull, stag, and a ram-headed serpent. Cernunnos is born at the winter solstice and dies at the summer solstice. Julius Caesar associated Cernunnos with the Roman Underworld god Dis Pater.

Source: “Cernunnos” A Dictionary of Celtic Mythology. James McKillop. Oxford University Press, 1998.

Epona

Epona is a Celtic horse goddess associated with fertility, a cornucopia, horses, asses, mules, and oxen who accompanied the soul on its final journey. Uniquely for the Celtic goddesses, the Romans adopted her and erected a temple to her in Rome.

Esus

Esus (Hesus) was a Gallic god named along with Taranis and Teutates. Esus is linked with Mercury and Mars and rituals with human sacrifice. He may have been a woodcutter.

Latobius

Latobius was a Celtic god worshipped in Austria. Latobius was a god of mountains and sky equated with the Roman Mars and Jupiter.

Lenus

Lenus was a Celtic healing god sometimes equated with the Celtic god Iovantucarus and the Roman god Mars who in this Celtic version was a healing god.

Lugh

Lugh is a god of craftsmanship or a solar deity, also known as Lamfhada. As leader of the Tuatha De Danann, Lugh defeated the Fomorians at the Second Battle of Magh.

Maponus

Maponus was a Celtic god of music and poetry in Britain and France, sometimes associated with Apollo.

Medb

Medb (or Meadhbh, Méadhbh, Maeve, Maev, Meave, and Maive), goddess of Connacht and Leinster. She had many husbands and figured in the Tain Bo Cuailgne (Cattle Raid of Cooley). She may have been a motyher goddess or historical.

Morrigan

Morrigan is a Celtic goddess of war who hovered over the battlefield as a crow or raven. She has been equated with Medh. Badb, Macha, and Nemain may have been aspects of her or she was part of a trinity of war goddesses, with Badb and Macha.

The hero Cu Chulainn rejected her because he failed to recognize her. When he died, Morrigan sat on his shoulder as a crow. She is usually referred to as “the Morrigan”.

Source: “Mórrígan” A Dictionary of Celtic Mythology. James McKillop. Oxford University Press, 1998.

Nehalennia

Nehalennia was a Celtic goddess of seafarers, fertility and abundance.

Nemausicae

Nemausicae was a Celtic mother goddesses of fertility and healing.

Nerthus

Nerthus was a Germanic fertility goddess mentioned in Tacitus’ Germania.

Nuada

Nuada (Nudd or Ludd) is the Celtic god of healing and much more. He had an invincible sword that would cut his enemies in half. He lost his hand in battle which meant that he was no longer eligible to rule as king until his brother made him a silver replacement. He was killed by the god of death Balor.

Saitada

Saitada was a Celtic goddess from the Tyne Valley in England whose name may mean “goddess of grief.”

By N.S. Gill, Ancient/Classical History Expert

Article found on & owned by About.com

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Let’s Talk Witch – What is Celtic?

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What is Celtic?

 

Definition:

For many people, the term “Celtic” is a homogenized one, popularly used to apply to cultural groups located in the British Isles and Ireland. However, from an anthropological standpoint, the term “Celtic” is actually fairly complex. Rather than meaning just people of Irish or English background, Celtic is used by scholars to define a specific set of language groups, originating both in the British Isles and in the mainland of Europe.

Celtic studies scholar Lisa Spangenberg says, “The Celts are an Indo-European people who spread from central Europe across the European continent to Western Europe, the British Isles, and southeast to Galatia (in Asia Minor) during the time before the Roman Empire. The Celtic family of languages is divided into two branches, the Insular Celtic languages, and the Continental Celtic languages.”

Today, the remains of early Celtic culture can be found in England and Scotland, Wales, Ireland, some areas of France and Germany, and even parts of the Iberian Peninsula. Prior to the advancement of the Roman Empire, much of Europe spoke languages that fell under the umbrella term of Celtic.

Sixteenth-century linguist and scholar Edward Lhuyd determined that the Celtic languages in Britain fell into two general categories. In Ireland, the Isle of Man and Scotland, the language was classified as “Q-Celtic,” or “Goidelic.” Meanwhile, Lhuyd classified the language of Brittany, Cornwall and Wales as “P-Celtic,” or “Brythonic.” While there were similarities between the two language groups, there were distinct differences in pronunciations and terminology. For specific explanations on this fairly complex system, read Barry Cunliffe’s book, The Celts – A Very Short Introduction.

Because of Lhuyd’s definitions, everyone began considering the people who spoke these languages “Celts,” despite the fact that his classifications had somewhat overlooked the Continental dialects. This was partly because, by the time Lhuyd began examining and tracing the existing Celtic languages, the Continental variations had all died out. Continental Celtic languages were also divided into two groups, the Celt-Iberian and Gaulish (or Gallic), according to Carlos Jordán Cólera of the University of Zaragoza, Spain.

As if the language issue wasn’t confusing enough, continental European Celtic culture is divided into two time periods, Hallstatt and La Tene. The Hallstatt culture began at the onset of the Bronze Age, around 1200 b.c.e., and ran up until around 475 b.c.e. This area included much of central Europe, and was focused around Austria but included what are now Croatia, Slovakia, Hungary, northern Italy, Eastern France, and even parts of Switzerland.

About a generation before the end of Hallstatt culture, the La Tene cultural era emerged, running from 500 b.c.e. to 15 b.c.e. This culture spread west from the center of Hallstatt, and moved into Spain and northern Italy, and even occupied Rome for a time. The Romans called the La Tene Celts Gauls. It is unclear whether La Tene culture ever crossed into Britain, however, there have been some commonalities between mainland La Tene and the insular culture of the British Isles.

In modern Pagan religions, the term “Celtic” is generally used to apply to the mythology and legends found in the British Isles. When we discuss Celtic gods and goddesses here at About Pagan/Wiccan, we’re referring to the deities found in the pantheons of what are now Wales, Ireland, England and Scotland. Likewise, modern Celtic Reconstructionist paths, including but not limited to Druid groups, honor the deities of the British Isles.

Author: Patti Wigington, Pagan/Wicca Expert

Article found on & owned by About.com

 

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To Gain Money

Fill the cauldron half-full of water (I use a shallow clear bowl) and drop a sliver coin into it (I use a nickel I have found somewhere if I have one). Position the cauldron so that light from the Moon shines into the water. Gently sweep your hands just above the surface, symbolically gathering the Moon’s sliver.

While doing this, say:

Lovely Lady of the Moon, bring to me your wealth right soon. Fill my hands with sliver and gold. All you give my purse can hold.

Repeat three times. When finished, pour the water upon the Earth (and keep the coin in your wallet or pocket). This is best done at the Full Moon.

Celtic Magic by D. J. Conway; page 146 Copyright 1990

Categories: Celtic Magick, Charms/Talismans, Coven Life, Daily Posts, Magickal Boosters, The Sun, The Moon, etc., Money Spells, Spellcrafting | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

WOTC Extra – Modern Druid Beliefs


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Modern Druid Beliefs

 

Both the neopagan and so-called mesopagan groups emphasize the sacredness of nature and its importance to human health and spiritual growth. Both adhere to the concepts of awen, or inspiration, and imbas, or divine illumination.

The “traditional” British groups and their heirs follow a calendar based on the ancient solar calendar, with four main festivals to mark the solstices and equinoxes. These are often referred to as the “Gates of Alban,” and are perceived as times when illuminating energy floods the earth, and the barriers of the Otherworld are dissolved. These are:

Alban Eiler, “Light of the Earth,” the spring equinox

Alban Heruin, “Light of the Sea,” the summer solstice

Alban Elued, “Light of the Water,” the autumn equinox

Alban Artan, “Light of Arthur,” the winter solstice, celebrated as the new year

Many groups add to these the four cross-quarter days, marking the spaces on the calendar in between solar festivals. These include the traditional holidays of Beltaine, Imbolc, Lughnasadh, and Samhain/Samhuinn.

The Everything Celtic Wisdom Book: Find inspiration through ancient traditions, rituals, and spirituality (Everything®)
Jennifer Emick

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Let’s Talk Witch – The New Druids


Unicorn Comments & Graphics

The New Druids

 

Despite being mostly mythical nonsense, the neodruid movement never entirely lost its charm, but by the early twentieth century, interest was dwindling. The decline would not last long. With new scholarship, a better sense of the ancient religion began to take shape. When the 1960s rolled around, bringing increased interest in the environment and alternatives to main-stream spirituality, interest in druidry as a religion began anew.

There are several types of modern druid organizations. A handful of these groups claim lineage from one or more of the eighteenth-century revival orders, and their beliefs and practices are more in keeping with eighteenth century esotericism than druidry as a strict religious pursuit. Still others, sometimes referred to as Celtic Reconstructionists or neopagan druids, try to emulate as closely as possible ancient druid religious practices, gleaned from historical and archaeological reconstructions, but dispensing with the notions of the romantic revivalists.

The modern day neodruid movement sprang up somewhat simultaneously both in the United States and the United Kingdom. The first such group, the Reformed Druids of North America (RDNA), was formed in 1963 as something of a lark. A group of Minnesota college students were upset with a school rule demanding mandatory attendance of religious services. Not liking any of the available choices, they opted to create their own. They chose druidry and dressed up their new religious organization with tongue-in-cheek style. When the absurd rule was finally withdrawn, pretend druids actually found themselves interested in studying druidry, and eventually the group began practicing in earnest.

About a year after the founding of the RDNA in the United States, a British poet named Ross Nichols, a member of the Ancient Druid Order, became offended by the group’s election of a new leader. He set out on his own and organized a new group, which he called the Order of Bards, Ovates, and Druids (OBOD), after the classical system of druidical ranking. The OBOD emphasized a more historical, Celtic-centered mythology and ceremonies, and adopted a calendar of festivals based on the ancient Celtic calendar. The OBOD, like its parent order, places more emphasis on personal spiritual growth and inspiration than on faithfully recreating the practices of ancient druids.

What these newer druid groups and their offshoots had in common was an interest in an in-depth real spiritual experience, in contrast to the generalized esoteric spirituality and clubbishness of the fraternal druid orders and the nationalistic cultural emphasis of the Welsh groups. During the 1980s, membership in these groups and many other newly formed druid groups exploded alongside the Wiccan movement. Today, Celtic Reconstruction and druid orders are equally popular with disenchanted Wiccans and others looking for more authentic pagan traditions.

The Everything Celtic Wisdom Book: Find inspiration through ancient traditions, rituals, and spirituality (Everything®)
Jennifer Emick

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What A Very Wonderful & Blessed Wednesday The Goddess Has Given Us!

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Celtic Commandments

Give thou thine heart to the wild magic,
To the Lord and the Lady of Nature,
Beyond any consideration of this world.
 
 
Do not covet large or small,
Do not despise weakling or poor,
Semblance of evil allow not near thee,
Never give nor earn thou shame.
 
 
The Ancient Harmonies are given thee,
Understand them early and prove,
Be one with the power of the elements,
Put behind thee dishonor and lies.
 
 
Be loyal to the Lord of the Wild Wood,
Be true to the Lady of the Stars,
Be true to thine own self besides,
True to the magic of Nature above all else.
 
 
Do not thou curse anyone,
Lest thou threefold cursed shouldst be,
And shouldst thou travel ocean and earth,
Follow the very step of the ancient trackways.
 
 
–From the carmina gadelica, ancient celtic oral tradition
Pagan Carmina Gadelica by Mike Nichols
Original Carmina Gadelica in full

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Let’s Talk Witch – The Eight Keys to Celtic Magic

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Let’s Talk Witch – The Eight Keys to Celtic Magic

Every folk group has special traditions with regard to magical practice. To the contrary of trends in modern occultism these traditions are not merely windaw dressing on a universal pattern- the differences reflect real and often profound variations between and among traditions. In studying the Celtic traditions of magic certain unique themes occur which are worth pointing out. These themes help distinguish the Celtic traditions from others. If these themes are found inspiring, then the Celtic tradition is a place to explore them further in the environment of ideas which will lead the seeker to deeper findings along the same path.
1. Magic of the Head
NO other tradition, with the possible exception of the Slavic, is more focused on the human head (and brain) as the seat of magical powers. When one reads the ancient Irish tales one becomes aware of the degree to which the Celts were head hunters. The reason for this is that their magical physiology holds that the head is the seat of power- an honour. This a warrior attempts to steal from an enemy, and assume himself. Hence the ancient Irish were known to eat a portion of a slain enemy’s brain. The head-hunting practices of Irish fighters continued until the mid-19th century, when early Irish immigrants to North America fighting for the Confederacy were known to have hunted the heads of Union soldiers. (See Professor Grady McWhiney’s book Attack and Die.) Also, however, the heads of one’s own ancestors were to be preserved- and displayed at certain holy times. This “cult of the head” is conspicuous at the Celtic temple at Roquepertuse, which contains stone pillars with niches into which the heads of ancestral heroes were placed. This is without doubt also the ultimate origin of the “jack-o-lantern”the carved cephalomorphic gourd familiar in Halloween customs. It is thought by many that the myth of the head of Mimir, which informs the God Odin, is ultimately a Celtic influence.
2. Memory
Mimir means memory- and the exercise of memory in and of itself seems to have a magical importance for the Celts. This is a trait they share with the Aryans of the east. The Druidic training program is said to have consisted of twenty years of learning lore by memory. The exercise of this faculty for its own sake, beyond the ready access to information it provides to the subject is something the Celts seem to have especially appreciated. the ogham system was most certainly one of the practical tools used in this exercise. Poems and stories were among the things memorized.
3. Story-Telling
The stories recited by Celtic tellers of tales were not merely for entertainment- they were also not merely mythic tales in which the traditions of the people were encoded. Stories are actually said to have operative magical effects. It might be said that the hearing of a certain story would bring a number of years of good fortune, but the telling of a story would bring even more. (See Rees and Rees, The Celtic Heritage.)
4. Language and Music
No people seem more Iyrical than the Celts. The linkage between music (harmonics) and language (meaning) is strong. In the lore of magic this reaches its apex in operative techniques by which changes in the environment, or in the human mind, can actually be effected by means of musical strains alone. This is a theory explored by the Pythagoreans, but in the lore of the Celts it appears to have been an ancient traditional operative technique.
5. Inter-Dimensionality
No other traditional lore seems to have a better or more realistic understanding of the magical experience of inter-dimensionality. The regular interaction with the “otherworld” or the “underworld” is a common feature of Irish and Welsh mythic tales as well as folktales from the Celtic cultures. It is from these that the Arthurian legends inherit their “inter-dimensional” features- such as the Grail Castle appearing and disappearing from various “places” at various “times.” This mutual effect of one “world” upon another is reflected in the very grammar of the Celtic languages wherein one word, when juxtaposed to another for a specific grarnrnatical, syntactic and semantic purpose, will cause the latter word to change its shape (sound). For example the Irish word for “cow” is bo, and the word for “white” is ban, but to say “a white cow,” one must say, or write, bo bhan [pron. boh-vawn].
6. “Satirizing”
By the use of words – of poetry – the fili(“master poets”) were able to cause physical changes in the bodies of other individuals. This was done with “satire.” The fact that satirical verse has a patently humorous aspect is the essentially Celtic dimension here. Because Celtic kings could not rule if they suffered any physical defect or blemish, all the satirists had to do in order to depose a king was to, by means of a satirical verse, raise boils on his face. All would see the blemish, and his rule would be at an end.
7. Operative Fasting
Fasting for “spiritual” reasons is familiar throughout the world. To fast-really to starve the body – in order to make subjective changes is obvious. Celtic magicians could, however, “fast on” their enemies as an operative curse formula. By starving himself to near death the sorcerer can actually cause the death of his enemy. This technique is something entirely different from, though apparently related to, the use of fasting as a way to “protest” supposed injustices. This latter technique works only through the medium of information in the context of public morality, whereas the operative fasting of the ancient Celtic magicians worked in a mysterious way.
8. Magical Taboos
Again “taboos” – negative prohibitions against certain behaviours– and other behavioural sanctions are familiar in most religious traditions. The Irish gess [pron. gaysh] (plural gessa) is most often translated something like “taboo.” It is, however, something quite different from what is usually meant by this word. A gess, although usually a prohibition against behaviour, actually provides power to the individual. The more gessa that have been “put on” a person (usually by a sorcerer) the more danger recipients live with- but also the more power recipients have at their disposal. To have a gess is both a curse and a boon simultaneously.
These eight distinctive points of Celtic magic, being aspects which distinguish that tradition from others, should be focal points of research and practice in any program to develop a true magical renaissance of the Celtic tradition.

 

Author:

by Edred Thorsson

An Assue Wytch’s Book of Correspondences

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The Alder Tree – Celtic Tree Astrology for March 18 – April 14

The Alder Tree

March 18 – April 14

If you are an Alder sign within the Celtic tree astrology system, you are a natural-born pathfinder. You’re a mover and a shaker, and will blaze a trail with fiery passion often gaining loyal followers to your cause. You are charming, gregarious and mingle easily with a broad mix of personalities. In other words, Alder signs get along with everybody and everybody loves to hang around with you. This might be because Alder’s are easily confident and have a strong self-faith. This self-assurances is infectious and other people recognize this quality in you instantly. Alder Celtic tree astrology signs are very focused and dislike waste. Consequently, they can see through superficialities and will not tolerate fluff. Alder people place high value on their time, and feel that wasting time is insufferable. They are motivated by action and results. Alder’s pair well with Hawthorns, Oaks or even Birch signs.

 

Source:
Whats-Your-Sign.com

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