Posts Tagged With: Ogham

Your Celtic Sign

Your Celtic Sign

Attract the luck of the ancient Irish with your Celtic Astrology

Tarotcom Staff  Tarotcom Staff on the topics of zodiac, st patricks day, astrology

 

Want to attract the luck of the Irish this St. Patrick’s Day? Get to know your Celtic Astrology!

 

While Western Astrology centers around the planet Earth, the 13 signs of Celtic Astrology are based on the cycle of the Moon. Long ago, the Celts imagined the universe as a tree with deep roots and neverending branches. Around 1000 B.C. people began to designate a tree for each Moon phase in the lunar calendar.
Each Celtic tree sign has different powers and meanings, along with corresponding spirit animals, a color, gemstone, and a Celtic “ogham” — a symbolic letter of the Celtic alphabet meant to attract luck, protect from harm, and heighten each tree sign’s unique powers.
Look up your birth date below to learn about your Celtic sign and the talismans that come with it!

Birch (Dec. 24 – Jan. 20)

You are renowned for having a fresh and unusual outlook on life. Your ogham is Beithe, which symbolizes beginnings, change, and fresh opportunities, and is therefore quite useful in times of transition. The animals associated with the Birch tree are the golden eagle and the white stag. Your color is white, and your gemstone is rock crystal (clear quartz).  

Rowan (Jan. 21 – Feb. 17)

With the Rowan tree comes excellent taste. Your ogham is Luis, which represents strength in the areas of insight and discernment. The Celts linked the crane and the green dragon to the energy of the Rowan tree. Your color is gray and your gemstone is peridot.

Ash (Feb. 18 – March 17)

The Ash tree represents escape and peaceful solitude in Celtic Astrology. Your ogham is Nuin, which symbolizes peace and tranquility. The animals associated with the Ash tree are the seal, the seahorse, and the seagull. Your color is green and your gemstone is coral.

Alder (March 18 – April 14)

Under the sign of the Alder tree, you are famous for your bravado. The Alder tree’s ogham is Fearn, which represents moral and physical courage, and should be invoked when you need to make a bold move in life. The bear, the fox, and the hawk are the animals the Celts associated with the Alder tree. Your color is red and your gemstone is the ruby.

Willow (April 15 – May 12)

Represented by the Willow tree, you are known for your vivid imagination. Your Celtic ogham is Saille, which embodies the principles of intuition, creativity and artistry to support that imagination. The animals associated with the Willow sign are the adder, the hare and the sea serpent. Your color is yellow and your gemstone is moonstone.

Hawthorn (May 13 – June 9)

People born under the sign of the Hawthorn tree are patient, thoughtful and hopeful. Your ogham is Huathe, which embodies the principle of restraint, providing you with optimism and keeping you from jumping the gun. The animals associated with the Hawthorn tree are the bee and the owl. Your color is purple and gemstone is topaz.

Oak (June 10 – July 7)

Represented by the Oak tree, you stand out for your reliability, diligence and emotional strength. Your ogham is Duir, which holds the powers of protection, ideal when you’re about to undertake a difficult project. The wren, the otter, and the white horse are the animals the Celts associated with the Oak tree sign. Your color is black and your gemstone is the diamond.

Holly (July 8 – Aug. 4)

Under the Holly tree sign, you are celebrated for your physical strength and star power. Your ogham is Tinne, which represents additional strength and brilliance. The Celts associated the cat and the unicorn with the Holly tree. Your color is silver and your gemstone is carnelian.

Hazel (Aug. 5 – Sept. 1)

As a Hazel tree sign, you are prized for your intellect, maturity and perspective. Your ogham is Coll, which represents wisdom, and is therefore strongest when you are feeling tested or when you must put faith in your head over your heart. The crane and the salmon are the animals associated with the Hazel tree sign. Your color is brown and your gemstone is the amethyst.

Vine (Sept. 2 – Sept. 29)

The sign of the Vine carries an uninhibited nature and the strength of foresight. Your ogham is Muin, which symbolizes the power of prophecy and faraway thinking. The Celts linked the lizard, the hound and the white swan to the energy of the Vine. Your colors are pastels and your gemstone is the emerald.

Ivy (Sept. 30 – Oct. 27)

Represented by the Celtic tree sign Ivy, you are famous for your sheer determination and willpower. Your ogham is Gort, which symbolizes progress and aids in overcoming obstacles that stand in your path. The boar, the butterfly and the goose are the animals associated with the Ivy sign. Your color is blue and your gemstone is opal.

Reed (Oct. 28 – Nov. 24)

Under the sign of the Reed you are celebrated for your open-minded attitude and worldly sophistication. Your ogham is Ngetal, which symbolizes unity and is especially beneficial when you venture out of your comfort zone. The animals associated with the Reed sign are the hound and the owl. Your color is orange and your gemstone is jasper.

Elder (Nov. 25 – Dec. 23)

The energy of the Elder sign is wise beyond its years. Your ogham is Ruis, which represents maturity, and is beneficial when you must come to terms with a difficult situation or heal from heavy emotional pain. The Celts linked the badger, the black horse and the raven to the energy of the Elder tree. Your color is gold and your gemstone is jet.

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Sacred Druidic Alphabet

Ogham Alphabet

oghamchart

 

“The Ogham (pronounced owam), or sacred Druidic alphabet, contained hidden secrets for magic and divination. Only the initiated could understand these occult meaning. The ancient Celts had a kinship with trees which is shown in this magical alphabet and in their tree calendar. Further proof of their respect for trees is in the old Celtic word for oak (Duir); the word Derwydd or Duirwydd (oak-seer) was probably the origin of the word Druid.

The Celts believed that many trees where inhabited by spirits or had spirits of their own. This idea most notably applied to any tree with a strong aura around it. They also believed that certain trees had a healing influence on humans. From this ancient respect for the power of trees came the expressions ‘touch wood’ and ‘knock on wood’.

Oak, ash, and thorn were called the faery triad of trees. Where they grow together, it is still said that faeries live.

The ancient Celts used the Ogham alphabet in performing magick. They also threw divination sticks engraved with the signs of the Ogham alphabet.

For divination, paint or engrave the symbols on one side of some flat sticks. Ice cream sticks or tongue depressors work well for this purpose. The symbols can also be drawn on cards and read as you do tarot. Choose seven sticks without looking. Concentrate on your question while holding them in both hands. Then gently toss them on the ground or floor in front of you. The closest sticks represent the present; the farthest represent the future. Any sticks that touch or overlap have a direct and enhanced influence on each other.

The Ogham signs may also be carved into candles or used in writing out requests to be presented to the gods during rituals.”**

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About the Celtic Tree Month Reed October 28 to November 24

Celtic Tree Month Reed

(Ngetal)

October 28 to November 24

Those Born Under This Sign:

Reed signs among the Celtic tree astrology signs are the secret keepers.  You dig deep inside to the real meaning of things and discover the truth hidden beneath layers of distraction.  When there is a need to get to the heart of the matter, most certainly the Reed sign will find the core.  You love a good story, and can be easily drawn in by gossip, scandals, legend and lore.  These tendencies also make you an excellent historian, journalist, detective or archeologist.  You love people because they represent a diversity of meanings for you to interpret.  You are adept at coaxing people to talking to you, and sometimes you can be a bit manipulative.  However, you have a strong sense of truth and honor so most of your scheming is harmless.  Reed people join well with other Reeds, Ash or Oak signs.

Celtic Meaning Of The Reed:

The Celtic meaning of the reed within the Ogham deals with:

  • Purpose
  • Protection
  • Purification
  • Clarification
  • Communication

Today we may not consider the reed a tree, but in the time of the ancient Celts their landscape held prolific reeds in swamp areas; some growing up to 20 feet tall.

The druids viewed any large plant like this with a woody stalk to be a tree, and the reed was considered very important.

All things of the natural world were honored by the Celts, and all things represented the connection with life.   In this way, the reed was highly revered for its usefulness in the day-to-day practices of the Celts.

The reed was used for many purposes by the Celts.  Specifically, they would weave reeds together to make thatched roofs on their homes – some of which (when properly constructed) last up to a decade or more.  This is where the reed obtains its symbolism of protection.  It is also a natural insulator, and the Celts honored it highly during cold, wet months.

Reed gives off a faint sweet smell when macerated, and so the Celts were known to lay out pressed reeds as flooring in their homes to deodorize.  This was also a practice for cleansing and purifying homes.

Reeds also made good candles, and were viewed as beacons of light during the dark nights.  This is another facet of the reed’s purposefulness in the life of the Celts.

The reed gets its symbolism of communication from several sources.  In the hands of a good craftsman (and there were many among the ancient Celts), a reed would make a fine whistle, flute or recorder.  These were highly prized amongst the people, particularly bards. Through these flutes and music the spiritually-minded Celts would communicate fantastic worlds of vision, heroism, and beauty.  

Secondly, if you are still enough, you can hear them sing a song when the wind blows through a field of reeds.  If you’ve ever had the pleasure of hearing it, you know it is an eerie experience.  The Celts viewed this as an otherworld voice, and considered it a message of powerful importance.

Take the time to incorporate these symbolic meanings of the reed in your life.  Gather some up and bring them into the house to open up the energy and clear the air.  Or, try fashioning a flute from a reed and take it to your next drum circle to play!  Your Celtic ancestors will get such a kick out of that!

Reference:

Whats-Your-Sign.com

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Today’s Runes for August 1 is Eoh

Ice Runes are most commonly used for questions about struggle, conflict, and achievement. Eoh refers to the Yew tree. The Yew does not go dormant and therefore represents endurance. Even the wood of the tree is strong, resilient, and pliable – the Yew bends, but does not break. The evergreen nature of the Yew is present even in the rune itself, as it cannot be changed even by reversal. This rune is historically symbolic of death, but, as in the Tarot and as suggested by the nature of the Yew tree itself, death is seen only as a transmutation of something eternal and unchanging – the spirit.
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Celtic Astrology – March 18 – April 14 is the Month of the Alder, The Trailblazer

Celtic Meaning of the Alder Tree

The Celtic meaning of the Alder deals with giving and nurturing among the sacred Ogham for many reasons.

Namely, its root system provides rich nutrients to the soil, more so than other trees. The alder can successfully restore poor soil conditions back to healthy Ph levels.

Primarily a wetlands and swamp tree, the alder’s root system is often submerged in watery areas. As such, the Celts observed their roots serving as intricate shelter systems to fish, specifically trout and salmon. Further, the alder’s leaves easily decompose in the water providing rich nutrients to all manner of water creatures.

These acts of generosity and shelter against harsh conditions can be translated in our own lives. By simply standing firm in our own positive environment, we can affect those around us in positive ways. By emitting our signals of tranquility, and peace, we are enhancing the lives of others just be sheer association.

Although it is primarily associated with the element of water, the alder gracefully crosses into the realm of air and fire as well. For example, ancient legend indicates the wood of the young alder is traditionally used for crafting whistles, pan flutes and recorders. This establishes the alder’s claim to the air element.

Within the realm of fire, the alder’s coloring transmutes into a fiery orange after it is cut, indicating to the Celts that the alder secretly harbors sacred flame within its flesh. To prove the point, the alder (although a poor firewood) makes a pristine grade of charcoal, and was perfect for steadily hot conditions utilized to forge fine Celtic weaponry.

In this respect the alder reminds us that we have hidden powers within us that if tapped, provide magnificent resources that allow us to live out our highest ideals.

Whats-Your-Sign.com

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Imbolc Meditation

Imbolc Meditation
Submitted By: Cogar niMhorrighan

Here is an original meditation for the Imbolc festival (can be used at
any time):

It is a lovely spring day. The air is fresh with the fragrance of green
plants preparing to bloom. The sun’s radiance bathes you in comfort,
perhaps the first warmth you have felt in many months. You sense that
you are in Ireland, because it is green and everything feels clean and
alive. The landscape is timeless and magical. In the distance, you
hear birds singing as they welcome the unexpected warmth of the day.
Inside you, happiness begins to bubble and dance, very quietly at first.
It feels almost like anticipation, but it puts a smile on your lips as
well.

You are walking up a slight hill, not steep enough to tire you but just
enough to sense that something wonderful can be seen from the top. As
you walk, the grass is already tall enough to brush against your lower
legs. You know you are in a wild place where Nature flourishes.

Towards the top of the hill, you see a dolmen – two standing stones and
a large stone across the tops of them, like an arch. You wonder why you
didn’t see this dolmen sooner. It is as if it appeared when you were
just twenty feet from it. Does it mean something? Is it real? You do
not pause to wonder, but keep walking towards it.

As you walk between the stones, you notice carvings and symbols on the
sides of the dolmen. Some of them are lines and hash-marks, which you
suspect are an Ogham message. Others are just symbols, which you will
return to look at, another day.

As you pass through the dolmen, you feel an invisible curtain brush over
you gently. In the space of a blink, it is a clear, crisp night. The
stars are above you, brilliant and twinkling. You know the moon is
behind you, but you do not notice its light because there is a sparkling
fire just ahead. There is no breeze, but the evening is chilly as you
would expect when Winter is still in the air.

You pull your clothing more closely around you, as you continue up the
hill. You are eager to reach the warmth of the fire, which is bigger
than you thought at first. In fact, it is a bonfire and you realize you
have arrived at Imbolc.

You run the last few steps to stand next to the fire pushing your hands
towards it, to capture the heat from a safe distance. Tall yellow and
white flames seem to warm you inside and out. You pause to look at the
sky again, and savor the moment.

Looking across the flames, you suddenly realize that you are not alone.
You can see the top of someone’s head, and you aren’t certain if you
have intruded on a private ceremony. Slowly, you walk around the fire,
and your companion stands up from the rock she was sitting upon. She is
a tall, strong woman, with long hair so light you cannot tell if it is
blonde or white. She looks like the Queen of Pentacles in a way, with
an ageless sense of knowing and accomplishment. She wears a long gown
and an embroidered cape, yet you can see her bare feet peeking out from
under her skirt. You know she is someone noble yet without artifice.

Without a word, she stretches out her hands to take yours in welcome.
You know, as if you’ve known her all your life, that this is Brighid.
This is a special and sacred moment.

She welcomes you to her fire, which will burn tonight and every night,
for Imbolc is her festival and her fire is never extinguished.

You sit down next to her, on large flat rocks that are warm from the
fire, and very comfortable. She begins to explain to you the meaning of
Imbolc, and its promise of a fresh beginning–not just to the plants and
animals, but also to everyone on Earth who chooses to permit Imbolc into
their lives.

She helps you to remember your past dreams, especially the ones from
your childhood which began, “When I grow up…” And as you recall these
fantasies and goals, you realize how many of them were left behind with
your childhood, yet how many are still alive in what you do each day,
today. This is not a sad realization as much as it is a recognition
that you can start afresh now. Every one of those dreams is still with
you.

Brighid reaches to her side and picks up a fallen twig from a nearby yew
tree. It looks like any other twig, in the firelight. However, when
Brighid places it into the fire, the bark on it sparks and flames like a
sparkler, giving enough heat energy to set the twig burning brightly.
Without saying anything, Brighid is showing you how even a small spark
will set alight your oldest and most neglected dreams.

The lesson was simple, but vital. Now it is time to return to your own
world. As you stand, Brighid offers you a cup of clear water, which you
sip. The sensation in your mouth is unique. There is a kind of
life-giving energy, that is Spring itself. You take a large swallow of
the water, and feel your entire body respond to that water with a
vitality that–like your forgotten dreams–you had almost forgotten from
childhood.

After returning the cup to Brighid, and then a quick embrace, you stride
purposefully around the fire and back to the dolmen. Passing under it,
you emerge back into the daylight and the warm air and clear sunshine of
an early spring day. You know you have not merely learned the meaning
of Imbolc, but actually experienced it in your soul. From now on, every
time you sip fresh water, or see twigs and branches burning in a
bonfire, you will feel Brighid’s presence, and be reminded of the
fire–and dreams–that burn within you, too, and will never be
extinguished.

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What is Druidry to Me?

What is Druidry to Me?

Author: Ashley Rose

I started down the Druid path a few years ago. Since then I have spent most of my free time reading through articles, websites, and books. I have also spent lots of time out in nature, or my outdoor sanctuary. I took a lot of time to figure out who I was and just how I was going to wonder down the Druid path.

I had started a binder of interesting things I found and of things I wrote. I started to split them up into sections. There is a Druid/Christianity section that has helped me out a lot to defend my religion against my evil step-mom and my father. I put in here anything that I could find about Christo-Druidry or stuff that used bible verses to help prove my points. There is also a HUGE section on the history of Druidry and breakdowns of Bards, Ovates, and Druids.

Over the past few years I have been working on reports for each of the eight Sabbats; they have their own divider. Along with these are sections on: sacred sites, pantheons, and other interesting articles. There are also two other ‘volumes’ that I have made.

My first binder (listed above) has a lot of 101/history/‘what is Druidry’ things in it. I decided that I needed to know the basics and really find out if this was the path that I wanted to go down. Then my second binder has a little harder/more complex things in it. Some of these are like: astrology, mythical creatures, tarot, runes, and other types of divination.

Then there comes my last binder. I do not know if I will even use some of this information; but it is there if I need it. Here you can find: spell work, herbology, and articles on magical healing. All of these come together to form the coarse work that I thought would help me out on my path the most.

I have now come to believe that some of these sections are coming to a close. I have lots of information to help me on my path or to reference things if I need to. So, I have set a goal that on Samhain this year (2009) I will dedicate myself to the Lord and Lady. And yes, I will be doing it in my own way. The way that feels right to me.

Now that I am ending my first phase of my studies, I wanted to put into my own words just what Druidry is to me. I have had lots of people ask me, “What is Druidry?” Sadly, I could never really put into words just what this religion is. It is more than a religion; it is a way of life for me. I could tell them just how much I was at peace and this is where I belonged. I also knew that I loved the freedom and diversity of the religion.

Druidry does not have a solid set of rules that one has to follow ‘or else they are going to hell’. I can practice the way I feel is right for me. It is also a religion that promotes creativity, allows divination, and encourages people to learn about their ancestors. Some of these things I have been doing and not even realizing that they fall into a religion that I would later follow.

I was raised catholic and never really felt like I fit in. Many Christians are taught to fear the Druid way of life. This is funny considering that their religion was formed from ours. Also, they are the ones who created the devil and sin, not Druids. The Christians tend to bash people because of their beliefs. They think that everyone should follow their religion or go to hell. Centuries ago Christians converted people over to their religion out of fear. The especially pried on the fear of things that people did not know. Christians box themselves into buildings when worshiping their divine. We seek ours outside in nature. Why not go out to what the divine has created instead of a manmade creation?

One of the biggest things in Druidry is the worship of nature. All Druids see nature as divine and something that is sacred (along with animals) . Many feel at home when in nature or even an oneness with it. Druids thrive to live with nature and not just on it. We are not superior to this planet; we are a part of it. Druidry encourages people to go out in nature and observe all that the divine has made.

Druids honor those who came before them. Life does continue after a person leaves this world. A strong understanding of each stage of life is common in this religion. This is important to me because my family has always been one to share stories of those who have come before. It is something I enjoy.

There are a few major things that Druids believe in. One of the biggest things is that all things are one and was created by a divine being. They also believe in other worlds, planes of life, and realms. The concept of reincarnation, and immortality of a soul, is a huge part of what Druids believe of the afterlife. Along with this comes karma. One thing that Druids do not believe in is sacrifices. One will not find a Druid standing over a virgin waiting to offer it to the gods. Druids are people of wisdom, creativity, and love.

The path of enlightenment is another strong focus. Druidry allows people to have free thought and to seek their own personal goals. This is a path that may change from person to person. One must also experience the nature of this religion first hand. It cannot be found in a book. Many use meditation to help them find this enlightenment. Druidry can be a path of self-transformation. It is one that encourages people to see the truth. Druidry works more on focusing internally and finding out who you are.

Another reason why I enjoy Druidry is because there is a “holiday” about every six weeks. This helps me to keep my life in check. Every six weeks I reflect on what has happened since the last Sabbat. I take time to contemplate what this Sabbat means to me, how the season has changed, and make plans/goals for the next six weeks. These practices help keep me whole. It is something I need for my soul.

In the practice of Druidry (as stated above) there are three different grades: Bards, Ovates, and Druids. These grades also go along with my studies. A person can receive help walking the path of these grades. However, it is something that one must experience for themselves. The practice of Druidry is not just something you can learn in a book. One must live it. These three grades help one accomplish this.

The first level is that of a bard. A bard is someone who studies literature; they are the storytellers of Druidry. We have learned a lot about ancient Druidry from what the bards learned and passed on. They learn songs, stories, and traditions of their people. This includes the bloodline of a tribe. Knowing about the gods, sacred lands, and our ancestors is another aspect of this grade. Bards are trained to use words as magick. Bards are encouraged to be creative and learn through some form of art. This can be through music, poetry, or even in an everyday aspect like raising a family. The use of elements (earth, air, fire, and water) is focused on by Bards. They use these to try and find enlightenment on a physical plane.

Next comes the Ovate grade. The Ovates are the prophets, seers, and healers of Druidry. They learn to work with the past, present, and future. They focus more on an unseen plane; not the physical one like a Bard. An Ovate will use the elements for: healing, divination, and tree lore. They also learn about different creatures such as: familiars, fairies, and totem animals. Along with this an Ovate may learn herbology, tree Ogham, an understanding of reincarnation, and how to walk between the worlds. They focus a lot on meditation to help accomplish these tasks. They also use what they learned as a bard to help heal people and to be councilors. Ovates help people keep their heart, mind, and body in tune with nature.

The last grade is that of a Druid. Druids are sometimes seen as a wise one. This could be due to the fact that it takes a long time to walk the path of a Bard and an Ovate. A Druid is known to possess great wisdom and to be a peace bringer. They are spiritual advisors, teachers, and judges. A Druid understands the gift of walking between worlds, shape shifting, and manipulating reality. They are well versed in: astronomy, mathematics, philosophy, and the power of the gods. A Druid should have a broad understanding of all aspects of this religion.

One of the last things I would like to say that even though I do practice some forms of Witchcraft along with Druidry, I do not call myself a witch. I am a Druid. One walking the path of enlightenment.

In conclusion I would like to sum up what Druidry is to me in just one hundred words. Druidry is more than just a religion; it is a way of life. One that allows people to practice the way that feels right to them alone. We worship this planet and try to live with nature, not just on it. Druids do not believe in the devil. We celebrate a holiday about every six weeks. These help us to observe the changes of the seasons and reflect back on our lives. It is also a religion that promotes creativity, allows divination, and encourages people to learn about their ancestors. We believe in reincarnation. And many druids seek enlightenment through meditation. This is how I see Druidry.

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