- September 26, 2020 at 5:27 am #12232
Taliesin is the divine child. And there are many divine children in both religion and myth or mythic belief circles. Taliesin is sacrificed by the witch goddess Cerridwen, and Taliesin also finds his animal. He is also placed in the bag in the water. He is found in a fishing weir, and he knows the awen. Here at sowen, pronounced sow as in cow, not sow as in go, we have another part of the circle of Taliesin, the divine child. Here we have the part where Taliesin is stung by the three drops of pure awen. This is the meaning of sowen, it is the festival of the cauldron. All year, the brew has been distilled, creating pure awen, now is the time when the gifts of the cauldron are handed out to the druids. This is the time people dress in animal masks to represent their animal. Children go trick and treating, as a representation that they are looking for the awen, however, now it is just represented in the form of treats of apples, and apples are full of awen. This is what the church wanted to suppress, they wanted to suppress the knowledge of awen, but the woman eve, found the awen, she found the hidden secret in the garden. The divine child makes the sacrifice so all can know the awen. Unlike Christians, who think snakes represent the devil, snakes represent the good earth goddess to the druids. All things are seen differently in context. Soon the awen will rain down and the animals and humans will become more AWARE. Sowen is the night of the cauldron.September 26, 2020 at 8:48 pm #12236
I am now starting to understand that druids see the door to the other world through the land, sky, and sea, where the witches see the door through earth, fire, water, spirit, and air. These are similar but different ways to see the otherworld. I will have to figure out how to replace the elements with the land, sky and ocean. should I still call on the elements in each direction when I cast a circle, or just cast in three directions instead of four. also, I have been trying to find a brass or copper cauldron. this is not an easy thing to find, and may have to be made. I do not want a used brass or copper cauldron because it could contain negative energy if it was used for evil. Druids need good intention before we cast a spell, we need to think things through, as it harms none. spells can go haywire if not thought through. there seem to be infinite worlds. So, why do people continue to be bullies and not get along or respect the environment. Many druids think that druidry is becoming like witchcraft, however, I am starting to realize that they are not the same thing at all. still, I am starting to have more hope for druidry, and see awen and the cauldron as a new door that will open up a new way of seeing the world. further it is in my view a big mistake to just see awen as flowing inspiration. Soon the veils and doors between worlds will be thinner, and I think it has already started. the spirits of the ancestors should be honored and the positive things they did should be looked at as a thing that we should be grateful for. it is coming to a time to look into the cauldron. Further, the druids did have a creation myth, and I have found it. the myth comes from Wales. once the frame of reference is changed the world becomes a magical place to live in. WE become aware of boundaries, and carry the responsibilities of druids. the fantasy of childhood, of castles and faeries become real when we walk the druid path. further, an iron cauldron can not be used because iron harms the faeries. and it is interesting that so much copper and tin come from places like Cornwall and Wales. best Startree and may the awen inspire you to make your dreams become real.September 26, 2020 at 9:17 pm #12237
could cernunnos be a love god? He does have horns, and does that make him horny, like in a sexual way. he does hold a snake, which could be phalic or a representation of the earth goddess. and fawns have been thought to be very sexually active. he may be the representation of male sexuality, real manly, not like the feminization of males that has been going on lately. can we reclaim our manhood, and be real men, not boys, by following cernunnos. does he say stand up, be a man, you now have responsibilities to the tribe. He is like the real man. he has a firm grip on his snake. Jung thought that each man also has a female side. can we look at kindness as a male trait once again, being kind while we also don’t take poop off people. Cernunnos holds the torc, a symbol of power, but the snake could also be a symbol of earth awen, Can we find the cernunnos that is in each of us. has cernunnos taken hold of the awen. I don’t think he is lord of the hunt, unless he is hunting chicks to hook up with, and what is wrong with sex. I feel a lot of druids try to hide sex, and not be open about it. Cernunnos tells us not to repress our sexual drives, and see the beauty in sex. I think we should have a druid sexual awareness day. we should be proud of our sexuality, and not try to act like it is not there. it Wales there are even witch groups that use sex magic. Cernunnos is the playboy of the forest.September 27, 2020 at 7:43 am #12239david pooleParticipant
When I think of cauldrons, I tend to think of the Cauldron of Poesy, this is a very powerful exercise and well worth working with. Remember that as well as the cauldron of rebirth we also have the cauldron of Cerridwen, the cauldron of Rhydderch, and the cauldron of the Dagda. Each cauldron performs very different functions. It is not always about death and rebirth, it is also about sustaining life.September 27, 2020 at 4:06 pm #12240
Be careful attributing many Hallowe’en customs automatically to supposed ancient “druidic/Celtic” customs or Samhain. A case in point, trick or treating or “guising” as it was also known, may have originated when poor children would go from house to house asking for food and sweetmeats in exchange for going to a church and lighting candles and praying for the souls of one’s ancestors in purgatory, and in pre-Reformation Britain people would exchange “soul cakes”.
In fact, a lot of the associations with death and souls are actually Christian ones, hence All Hallows Eve, All Saints Day and All Souls Day. If anything, the associations with the dead may rest more upon non-Christian Roman traditions that were Christianised centuries before. Subsequently, the date was moved to October 31st in the Middle Ages, however, seeing as this was a date that was chosen to standardise the festival throughout the Christian world of the time, claims that it was deliberately chosen because of a relatively obscure Irish/Gaelic custom in one part of the world don’t really hold water. With the Reformation, a lot of traditions that were actually Catholic traditions were denigrated as pagan, diabolical and so on and relegated, when not eradicated completely, to rural folklore and customs.
“Halloween is probably the most misrepresented and misunderstood festival in the traditional calendar. The widespread notion that the day (or rather the night) is a pre-Christian pagan celebration is not historically correct, but is now so well-entrenched as to be immovable.”
Entry: Hallowe’en (31 October), p.230 in The Penguin Guide to the Superstitions of Britain and Ireland, Steve Roud, Penguin Books (ed. 2006)
As for snakes/serpents and, by extension, dragons, there are also a couple of problems. First and foremost, there have not been an snakes in Ireland since at least the Ice Age and when “serpents” do appear in Celtic mythologies, they rarely appear in a positive light, one example that comes to mind is the battling of the Fianna against dragons/serpents throughout Ireland. In addition to this, with probably the exception being the Gundestrup Cauldron and the odd representation of what might be Cernunnos, serpents/dragons do not feature very much, if at all, in pre-Christian Celtic art. The stories of snakes, serpents and serpent-like water beasts, e.g. Morag and the Loch Ness monster and so on, seem to originate in the early Christian period with the legends surrounding Saint Patrick, Saint Columba and Saint Petroc. As stated before, they are conspicuous by their absence in Gaelic traditions and their appearance in Brythonic traditions may be more due to Roman/Mediterranean influences.
/|\September 27, 2020 at 7:33 pm #12242
Dear David, when I look at many of the different cauldrons of the different gods and goddesses, I have to think that they are archetypal. They seem to be largely symbolic, like the Dagda cauldron that is always full of food. The cauldron may also be a symbol of the womb. In using a cauldron for magic, there is not a lot you can not do with it. I mean, you can burn written spells in it, but you also will probably set off the smoke detector if you are inside and start burning stuff. You could also use it to scry, but a scrying bowel may work better, or even a crystal ball. I am going to be looking more into cauldron magic, and will keep you up to date, but the main thing I want to say is that the cauldron and the triskle are symbols of the awen, and the pentagram is a symbol of the the elementals. There is a druid named Kristopher hughes that wrote to the cauldron born, and you should check him out. I think he is really an important druid, and he has a web page. the other thing is that a lot of Neo paganism is based on psychology, which is a good thing. We can learn a lot by acknowledging the sub conscious, and not repressing our feelings. I just think that druidry has a lot to do with understanding the concept of awen. And unlike a pentagram, which can be used as a portal to the Celtic Otherworld, I am not sure how that works with a cauldron. We are really talking about two different magic systems. so a cauldron could represent a womb, a way a tribe is fed, or a channel to contain awen. and magic is so much built on the magicians ability to channel energy with intent and will. my nightmare would be reaching into a cauldron and have something pull me into it, or something weird coming out of a magic cauldron. so that is the idea of a cauldron being a portal to the otherworld. Still there is magic and there is myth and there is history, and the three are not the same thing.September 27, 2020 at 8:00 pm #12243
Dear Dowrgi, wow, I think it is the other way around, and that much of the christian stuff came from the incorporation of folk customs, however, you do make a good point, and it could be argued either way. Also, often christian churches were built on pagan sites. And there were at least 6 different Celtic nations, so druidry was all over France, and Germany, and even the roman areas. But again so many of these Celtic myths and gods do represent archetypes, such as dragons are archetypal of the Ley or land energy that is coursing like a river through out the land. And the romans were very interested in the uk, and places like Cornwall because of the tin and copper that could be found there. as far as the christian religion, it is really tangled up with the early Celtic religion, but it can be untangled. As a druid, I am interested in the magic of awen, and how that can flow through me. the one thing that strikes me about the christian religion is that it is centered around the concept of sin, an how the desert god of the christians will punish people who fuck the wrong people, like the profit John the Baptist told the king he was a sinner. and the christians believe that if you sin god will send sickness and defeat to you. What a bunch of bull shit. And I think it is interesting that you brought up the idea of purgatory, because all the early christians were obsessed with it, just look at all the wax over at Canterbury Cathedral. Dowgri, can you think of a welsh or Cornish word that is similar to the word karma? Also, I found a Celtic creation myth from Wales, and will post some information on it in this thread. Many blessings of awen, Star TreeSeptember 27, 2020 at 8:24 pm #12244
I do want to say that I made a mistake about Cernunnos, he is not the playboy of the forest, he is the man of the forest. He is the initiation from boyhood to manhood. he plays the father role. He is not the drunk frat boy, but the mature caring, calm, grateful man in all of us. we should have rituals to bring new druids into druid manhood, and cernunnos could be the elder who brings them into the tribe of mature druids. I know we have all seen frat boy behavior at druid festivals, and these druids need to become men, and be mature, and not wild naffty drunks stumbling towards enlightenment.September 27, 2020 at 8:56 pm #12245
One of the ideas that druidic/ancient Celtic belief seems to have held dear was that of reincarnation. It’s a bit hard to have purgatory or an afterlife as we think of it in Western traditions if you also have the idea of reincarnation. There’s not much point is there? There were no druids in Germanic areas according to the ancient sources – the Romans noted this as being a major difference between the Gauls and the Germans.
Pope Gregory IV transferred the celebration of All Martyrs from May 13th to November 1st in 835 CE. May 13th had been the date of the Roman festival of Lemuria, when spirits and ghosts were banished from a Roman household. In the early 7th century CE, Pope Boniface IV used this date, May 13th, to rededicate the Pantheon in Rome to Saint Mary and All Martyrs. As far as Samhain is concerned, there’s not much to link it to the dead and the ancient Irish festival seems to have been more connected with feasting. Furthermore, Samhain seems to have been specifically Gaelic and there’s nothing to suggest it was all that important elsewhere or some kind of pan-Celtic festival. Even the supposed link to Samonios on the Coligny Calendar is debatable. Interestingly enough, entirely outside the Celtic sphere, so to speak, but well within the Roman one, in various parts of mainland Italy, Sardinia and Corsica, Hallowe’en-like festivals connected to notions of spirits, souls and the dead are celebrated as part of the traditional folklore calendar.
Now, I like Hallowe’en and I enjoy the festival with all of its influences as it has come down to us today, but it’s not particularly pagan nor particularly druidic and an awful lot of very spurious claims have been made about it. I really don’t understand why many feel the need to try to claim origins for something in order either to attack the one tradition or seek to debunk the other.
As for karma, well, it’s a Sanskrit word that basically means action or deed, so tracing back the Indo-European roots we’d get Proto-Celtic *kwert which gives us the Welsh word peri, which means to cause or induce; however, I do not believe the Welsh word holds the same spiritual meaning.
/|\September 28, 2020 at 1:17 am #12246
Thank you Dowrgi for all the knowledge, and it is really interesting that you think that there is proof that the druids did believe in reincarnation. I think this can be a settled fact now that they did believe in reincarnation which I have to wonder how they got that belief. I think it could be that the dead came back as spirits, I hope not zombies, because zombie druids would be quite scary, anyway the dead came back as spirits and told the living about the afterlife. It would be a very comforting thought to know that you would see your relatives again, and that life goes on. I doubt the concept of reincarnation came from the east, but the druids and Celts did trade a lot, and you could get around back then by boat. I also wonder if the druids could get opium or hash. also, thanks for the words peri, and Kwert. it might be easy to get to the idea of a karma like belief if a culture did believe in reincarnation. It would be a good trick to tell your neighbor that you would pay for the cow in the next lifetime, so he should go on and give it to you in this one. I agree with you on the halloween deal, but I have noticed that spirits and ghosts seem to be more active this time of year, like someone gives them a pass to get out of the graveyard, or to travel to this side of the veil. is there still a fair called the roast goose fair in Redruth near halloween? and do they still hand out Allan apples for good luck? as I understand it the girls put them under their pillows to dream about who they will marry. and are there other charms at this time of year to find out who your sweetheart is? from pouring hot lead through keyholes, to watching balls of rolled up papers unroll in water, it seems for some strange reason, Halloween was a time you could find out your future love life. And do they still celebrate anything at the holy well at St Cubert’s parish in east Cornwall. so it does seem that there is some divination going on around the time of halloween. and a wee bit of hobble, squabble, and some hubbadullion.September 28, 2020 at 7:48 pm #12248
a magic circle can be called a compass or a mill, and in the center is the cauldron, where the earth energy is stirred. also earth energy called sprowl. I do not think sprowl is the same as awen, but could be. sprowl is a Cornish term. So the dragon is a form of the serpentine energy and this is what the snake is too that cernunnos is holding. plus the horns, are from between the horns, or the representation of the Celtic Otherworld. Witches worship a form of cernunnos, but he is the lord of the hunt. however, the hunt could be a hunt for a mate. also the horns are also on the goat. a mill is like an engine for magic. the stone circles in Cornwall are also called dancing circles because the dance of the witches raises the energy. there seems to be a connection between the dead and the good folk in Cornwall. often called the pixie. so, the cauldron is used or represents a raising of energy or the term sprowl. which can be the same as the Ley line energy. still I do not think this is awen. awen seems to be deeper than sprowl.September 28, 2020 at 8:55 pm #12249david pooleParticipant
In Wales the first day of winter is known as Calan Gaeaf and is celebrated on 1st November; the day before it is known as Nos Calan Gaeaf. Spirits are abroad at these times and people avoid churchyards, stiles and crossroads. This is related to the legend of the Cutty Black Sow or Yr Hwch Ddu Gwta, a tailless black sow with a headless woman. People would write their names on stones and place them in a fire, if the next day any stones were found to be missing then that person was thought to die within one year. This custom was known as Coelcerth. Another part of this season was a custom known as Twco Fala, which we know as apple bobbing, very familiar from Halloween.September 28, 2020 at 9:30 pm #12250
In Cornish, it’s Nos Kalan Gwav, basically the same as the Welsh phrase, and means the “Night or Eve of the Calends of Winter”, Noevember 1st being Dy’ Halan Gwav. The Anglo-Cornish folklore name for the three-day period is Allantide, deriving from the ancient Celtic Saint, Saint Alan of Cornouaille (Kernev) in Brittany, although it’s tempting to see a possible connection between kalan/halan and Al(l)an too. Similar to the Welsh traditions, there were fires in some places in Cornwall and, certainly in West Cornwall, many traditions with red apples. In Brittany there is Kalan Goañv, and I think there might be a few old traditions with lanterns and apples there too. The modern, commercialised Hallowe’en, however, is so pervasive that it can be hard to discern what is “genuine” old folklore, and what is modern (re-)invention.
/|\September 28, 2020 at 9:35 pm #12251
Sadly, a lot of these old festivals and traditions have died out. However, “Goose Fairs” were held throughout the West Country and also other parts of England in early-October. The reason being was that goose was traditionally roasted for Michaelmas (29th September). When the new calendar was adopted in 1752, the festival got shifted forward to around the 10th of October or the nearest weekend days around it.
/|\September 29, 2020 at 1:00 am #12252
thank you so much for that info. I was wondering what Allantide was, for I have never heard of it until just recently. And a Roast Goose fair does sound fun. I am really wondering, have you heard anyone ever use the word sprowl? I had no idea how much ancient witchcraft is in Cornwall. It must really be a magical place to live. there is another thing that I have just been reading about, and it has to do with the word devil. As I understand it, the word devil did not mean the same thing that it means to us now. I think that it meant more of a Cernunnos archetype than the evil being that the church uses the word for. also, in the USA, no one really talks or thinks about spirits of place, or gods or goddesses of place. But I think people do in the UK because the druids have been there for a long time. Where I live, I guess the spirits of place would all be American Indians. I decided to just use a big earthen bowl as a cauldron because it seems to be about the same thing, it is just a container. I would hate to put my hand in the cauldron bowl and have something grab it and then bite my hand off. I think I can just put some black food dye in the bowl so I can scry with it. there seems to be a lot of awen about in the autumn. and I feel that trees really have something to do with the awen. here in the USA, there is a lot of tension going on, and a lot of enmity because of the covid, and the black lives matters and of course the big election. I am staying cool about all of it, but I am aware of the craziness that is going on, and careful about where and when I go places. spending most of my time studying adobe illustrator, and in design and photo shop. best Star tree
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