Reply To: Here comes the sun, Lugh, Lughnasad, Danu

The British Druid Order Forums BDO Public Forum Here comes the sun, Lugh, Lughnasad, Danu Reply To: Here comes the sun, Lugh, Lughnasad, Danu


    … So now I am going with Lugh as the god of this holiday, and Ceridwen as the Goddess …

    I think we need to be cautious here. Lúnasa is an Irish/Gaelic festival, there’s little evidence that it was a pan-Celtic festival and I think we ought to be careful about jumping to conclusions because other cultures had harvest festivals too, I mean, at what other time of year in the Northern Hemisphere are you going to celebrate the harvest? Coincidence is not correspondence. Moreover, the Irish literature seems to indicate that this was somehow a newer festival or at least a new name for the older festival of Bron Trogain (see: Acallam Na Senorach or The Colloquy of the Old Men).

    The next issue might be with associating Ceridwen, a figure from Welsh bardic tradition, with an Irish/Gaelic tradition. Furthermore, there’s reason to doubt that Ceridwen was ever considered a goddess by the ancient Britons and she does not figure at all in Gaelic tradition. If we must consider Ceridwen to be “divine” in some way, then we’re talking about a muse, a poet’s divinity, not really a goddess of fertility. The ancient Britons and Gauls had localised fertility goddesses and some of their names have come down to us: Nantosuelta, Rosmerta and Damona, for example, yet nothing similar to Ceridwen has ever shown up. All in all, it seems that Samhain or the Feast of Mongfind (the witch-queen of Tara) was important in the ancient Gaelic world and May Day (Bealtaine) was important in British (Brythonic) tradition, but in neither Celtic traditions is Lúnasa particularly “spiritual”, “mystical” or arcane. Having said all this and seeing as Lúnasa is an Irish/Gaelic festival and Irish literature and tradition have indicated what it’s about, why not stick with Lugh and Teilte? I think ascribing a “god” and a “goddess” to a ritual is more of a Wiccan tradition, I’m not sure how much it fits in with Celtic spirituality, although I stand to be corrected on that one.

    As an aside, Frazer (The Golden Bough) wrote a lot about these subjects and so did Graves, whence a lot of so-called modern Celtic spirituality, however, there are strong reasons to be wary of these materials as Frazer’s scholarship has not been without criticism and The White Goddess, great read and fine poetry as it is, is not much use in terms of genuine Celtic scholarship.