Flying in after a long absence to wish everyone a very happy new year, 2014 was a mixed bag really but I can look back on the year and say it was a good year and the blessings of the 3 where very evident in my life which I am beyond thankful for.
In August after 3 months of no work and having spiraled into another depressive phase with very bad anxiety to boot, I got offered part time work in a creche, and the penny’s money I earned has saved my ass on a financial level more times than I can count this year. But the biggest change for me was to try and go back to college, to say it was a last minute decision is an understatement but by some miracle I got accepted and I hit the ground running and I have just been snowed under ever since with working part time and doing assignments for college. And as a result all my plans for my Little Polytheist blog series went out the window, I do intend to go back and do it but it will most likely be in April before they get more regular but until then it will be 1 or 2 a month.
But for the day that’s in it tomorrow morning I will be cleaning the shrines and then I will be doing my offerings and prayers for the coming year to the Gods and Ancestors, with an offering being left out for the lordly ones also. Finished off with a saining with the remaining water I collected from the holy well.
I really do hope that 2015 will be a good year for everyone and that you will achieve all the things you set out to do.
“In travelling through the dense forest of the insular legends, and stirring the ashes of the continental Celtic world, we did not hope to uncover the plan of a vast edifice, a temple of the Celtic gods, partly overrun by the luxuriant wilderness and partly ruined by invaders. The indications are that this edifice never existed. Other people raised temples to their gods, and their very mythologies are temples whose architecture reproduces the symmetry of a cosmic or social order-an order both cosmic and social. It is in the wild solitude of the sacred woodland, that the Celtic tribe meets its gods, and its mythical world is a sacred forest, pathless and unbounded, which is inhabited by mysterious powers. Against these powers, man, situated in the midst of the supernatural, and himself possessed by it, defends with difficulty by force or by magic his small domain, which is always surrounded by invisible tribes and subject on certain ritual days to direct invasion.” – Celtic Gods and Heroes – Marie-Louise Sjoestedt
Yesterday I finished reading this book that I had longed to buy, most of the information presented was noting new or major to me its fairly familiar stuff and the book itself is only 95 pages noting too heavy. But when I read the above quoted passage from the conclusion of the book, I got what I can only describe as a spark going off in my chest which is the old yet rare and familiar sign for me that something has clicked into place a piece of the jigsaw fitting where it should. With that “spark” my brain went into complete over drive with ideas, a burst of excitement and with that the overwhelming sense that the path I choose to follow is leading me in the right direction. I feel renewed and with that I feel more confident in the direction I choose to take after thinking long and hard after the oracle I received 6 months ago. The last month alone has been one of small yet steady growth, noting spectacular to the outside person but to me it has made me feel so blessed and thankful for so many things.
The trip was cancelled yesterday, the job interview and errands took longer than I expected so I said it would be better off to leave it until today. However I awoke this morning to it pissing out of the heavens, so after many cups of tea and passing the hours away cursing the rain for getting in the way of my plans it finally stopped so I made a quick dash around the house to get my bits for the trip.
The well itself is up a country road in a fairly isolated area surrounded by farmland used for grazing dairy Cows.It is only one of three in the county to be dedicated to a foreign Saint, the well I went to was dedicated to St Bartholomew the Apostle. There is no parking so you have to pull into the side of the road and make sure your as far in as possible or your wing mirror will be in a million pieces when you come back (Country roads been narrow as fuck)
The well is surrounded by many trees Birch and Oak where the two I could notice most prevalent in the area, There is a small stream that is running alongside the area. Rooks a member of the Corvidae family have made there homes in one of the trees, There is a man-made path that goes around the well for people to make the “rounds” it has railings placed in the areas where you are most likely to slip because of the wet leaves (which nearly happened to me on my round)
A round is where you walk clockwise around the well while reciting the rosary or prayers a certain number of times, A stone slab was placed to tell pilgrims how many times they must walk around it and how many are to rosary’s are to be said, in this case it was walk 9 times around and recite 3 rosary’s.But I didn’t do that not been Catholic and all.
When I first started my prayer only half ways through the first round I realized I was doing it anti clockwise so I went back and started again. I did 3 rounds and during it my mind went almost blank except for my total focus on the walk, the words I was saying and the trees swaying in the wind. The path you must walk around is large so you are repeating it a good number of times, once the prayer was said I walked over to the well and removed the door and I spoke into the well asking for permission from the Spirit of the Well and stating what the water would be used for, I got a very loud and affirmative “You may proceed” in a voice that was neither male nor female. I filled my jar and after placed the Hazel nuts I had brought as my offering to the spirit on top of the stone slab which covers the well.
I had decided earlier in the planning of my trip to acknowledge the saint of the well, by tossing him a coin in offering however after thinking about it a lot I decided that I would much rather pay my proper respects to the original and true inhabitant of the well.
According to Cormac’s Glossary, Brigit was a set of triplets, daughters of the Dagda, all of the same name: a goddess of poetry, a goddess of smithing, and a goddess of leechcraft. – Mary Jones
I finally created separate prayers for my devotions to each of the Bridget’s (pats self on back). When I made my first offering to Bridget almost 2 years ago, I made one request to her on that sunny Imbolc afternoon that I be able to write prayer’s so that the Gods can be glorified (I’m all about the glorification of the Gods, I think it’s a holdover from been raised RC and all the Glorying to the father, son and holy spirit that they do)
Little did I know it would take almost a year and a half before I would start to get the desire to actually put pen to paper, I had been wondering for ages why there had been no inspiration or urge to write. It turns out I needed to know my shit before I could do what I had wanted to do from the beginning of finding CR. And in August of this year it started with my first prayer been to Anu.
For a long time I had seen Bridget as a single deity and it was all grand in my mind she was a single deity in complete oneness, The it all changed Milk I offered went sour, Incense and candles I had offered would quince just after lighting or half way through, the air was heavy and tense when I would go to pray to her and I would make reference to one Bridget. Then in reading I came across Bridget as 3 sisters and so it kept going round in my head to refer to these two other sisters and when I found a prayer appropriate to use and I said the words “Oh sisters three who hold all art and craft in hand”* The heavy and tense air around me lifted and the way it was put across to me “All was right with the world once again”. No more sour milk, incense and candles burned through and with it came the desire to write prayers in glory of the Gods. They are a mystery and it is not my wish to try to comprehend why the gods do the things they do, such mystery’s will never been known to us in life and I doubt even much so in death. Some people see and experience Bridget as one deity with many duty’s which I have no problem with, and then there are others like me who know Bridget as three sisters each one as much an individual with her own wants and desires but still there is that feeling of unity around them.
I finally got around to writing the prayer that I will use daily for my for ancestor veneration, I have recently been feeling the need to go beyond my current set up. The prayer might need to be tweaked here and there but overall I am happy with it. For the last year or more I have only honored 4 ancestors the reason for doing that was because I was new to ancestor veneration and I did not want to jump in and honor “The Collective” which is quiet something when you really think of it . I think the best advice I can and will ever give anyone with regards to one’s ancestors is to go and do your research, ask family member’s about them.
I think when people do research into their family trees especially, they only see the name and seem to forget that they where living people who went through all the sorrows and joys that we go through today, the only difference is they lived in a different time period.
Flowers for my Ancestors that are interred at the graveyard, fitting as I am currently doing research into more of my ancestors, especially my Paternal grandmother’s family. I cant help but get into “Ancestor mode” as I call it, a month or two before Samhain.
I find the Mesolithic and Neolithic periods of Ireland very interesting and happened across this by accident while looking for info on Archaeology courses, so this will probably be of interest to others like myself here is a link to the UCD website with more info on the project.
And now for a nice video explaining the project and also mentions of future projects which I am looking forward to seeing and reading about.