The longest day of the year, the Summer Solstice, is a day that scientists, astronomers, and meteorologists all observe with interest. Celtic spirituality stems from the pagan Celts, a collection of tribes in Ireland that were converted to Christianity by St. Patrick in the fifth century A.D. Two male members of the coven wear crowns of either oak or holly and perform a ceremonial fight. So each “pagan Christmas” article echoes the previous ones, like an endless succession of ghosts of Christmas past. We took advice from the police because obviously people don't expect fireworks at this time of year ... we've done this now for years," he said. Beltane or Beltain (/ ˈ b ɛ l. t eɪ n /) is the Gaelic May Day festival. In ancient Pagan times, the Winter Solstice was the time when people believed the new sun god of the year was born. If you decorate your home with a Yule tree, holly or candles, you are following some of these old traditions. For modern Pagans, the solstice is the most important time. Much of the ancient new year celebrations, such as gathering greenery in the form of a fir tree or holly, have now moved back to start at what is the beginning of the modern Christmas season. Decorations celebrated the three deities, the sun, moon and star and some … They picked this area in particular because it is close to Twyford Down, the site of a contentious road bypass which some activists argued was environmentally damaging. Traditionally, this festival marked the renewal of hope. Called Yule, it is one of the traditional Celtic fire festivals and marks the return of the light after the longest night of the year. Cailleach is known in parts of the Celtic world as the hag, the bringer of storms, the Dark Mother of the winter months. The Druids (Celtic priests) would cut the mistletoe that grew on the oak tree and give it as a blessing. It is … Merry Pagan Christmas Germanic and Scandinavian customs and symbols were also incorporated in what we will now lovingly call Pagan Christmas. Saturn was the Roman God of agriculture and plenty, and gift giving symbolised the redistribution of wealth from the rich to the poor during the season of greatest hardship. The next big ancient festival was the solstice feast of Mithras, the Roman God of light on December 25. 99 $25.00 $25.00. At this festival there were torchlit processions, lots of songs, present giving, fortune telling and people would decorate their houses with all sorts of greenery to symbolise new life. FREE Shipping on orders over $25 shipped by Amazon. Big feasts were generally laid on by the rich to feed their poorer neighbours. The pegan origins of Christmas can be traced back to the commemoration of the Winter Solstice celebrated in Europe on or around December 22nd. According to Pagans, the early Christian church hijacked December 25 to celebrate the birth of Jesus because they saw that everyone was already having a good time and decided to take advantage of it. "It's certainly too cold at this time of year to run about with no clothes on," said Dhyan Sargam, a witch from Berkshire. Celtic Yule Cakes 2-3 Tablespoons Boiling Water 1/2 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract 3/4 Teaspoon Baking Powder 2 Cups Powdered Sugar 2/3 Cup White Sugar Grated Orange Zest 1 1/3 Cup Sultanas 1 Tablespoon Milk 1 1/4 Cup Flour 1/2 Cup Butter 2 Eggs (Beaten) Beat eggs, butter, vanilla, orange zest and sugar together. In The Bleak Midwinter - Trad/carol 4. … On the night before the solstice she meets with the members of her coven, which number anywhere between 12 and 20, at a local beauty spot, to "enact the battle of the oak and the holly king." Legend had it that the martyr St. Stephen was betrayed by a wren when he was hiding in a bush. Hanging the holly and ivy wreath outside the house. We took advice from the police because obviously people don't expect fireworks at this time of year ... we've done this now for years," he said. More Buying Choices $19.75 (26 used & new offers) Kindle $13.99 $ 13. Crafted from durable MDF with a high-gloss plastic finish so your designs last a lifetime Vibrantly printed from edge-to-edge via Sublimation Ships with a festive gold cord for easy hanging Available in 4 Shapes: Circle, Oval, Heart, & Star Product Dimensions: 2.75” tall, 1/8 thick, 0.5 oz This was the one adopted by Christians sometime around the 4th century as the birthday of Jesus. But, in common with many Christians, Mr Sargam said: Much of the ancient new year celebrations, such as gathering greenery in the form of a fir tree or holly, have now moved back to start at what is the beginning of the modern Christmas season. According to The Etymological Dictionary Of Scottish-Gaelic the word cailleach itself means "veiled one" or "old woman". Until the mid-nineteenth century, the Christmas tree was seen as a primarily pagan tradition in the United States. 1-16 of 878 results for "celtic paganism" Skip to main search results Eligible for Free Shipping. The next big ancient festival was the solstice feast of Mithras, the Roman God of light on December 25. Gift-Delivering Mythical Beings. Website Design by, Celtic influences on Christmas traditions and roots, Humboldt Bay and the Madaket Maritime Museum. Get it as soon as Mon, Dec 21. He and his circle of about 20 warmly-dressed Pagans celebrate the festival of "light and healing" by holding a torchlit procession around a maze near Winchester. "I'm not a Pagan because I'm anti-Christian, I'm a Pagan because I believe in a variety of Pagan deities." The Pagan Federation, an umbrella group for Pagan organisations, describes Paganism as a spiritual nature-venerating belief system rooted in the ancient nature religions of the world. Mistletoe in the druid tradition was a symbol of male fertility. The Druids Beliefs About Mistletoe. The third celebration is New Year's Eve, originally dedicated to the two-faced Roman god Janus, who looked both forward and back. It is often called Yule, after the Scandinavian tradition, or Mother-Night from the Anglo-Saxon tradition. by URated Digital Marketing | Dec 21, 2020 | Uncategorized | 0 comments. On this, the longest night of the year, they celebrate the return of light and an end to darkness. Litha: The Celtic Pagan Traditions of My Ancestors Celebrating the longest day of the year with a long-ago family tradition . Available instantly. Chasing the wren. Mistletoe was revered as a sacred plant by the Celts, the Norse, … High Priestess Imbolc: The Promise of Spring (Feb. 2) Imbolc translated literally means "in the belly" in Gaelic. Sure, we’ve all heard of Santa Claus, who has his roots in the Dutch … We celebrate the rebirth of the sun, not the son," said Kate West, High Priestess of a Wiccan coven in Cheshire. But the most important date in the festive season for Pagans is the winter solstice which always takes place around December 21. On this, the longest night of the year, they celebrate the return of light and an end to darkness. Stay in touch and keep up on all the latest news from J.F. Apparently, the season of good cheer did not start out as exclusively a Christian festival. Two male members of the coven wear crowns of either oak or holly and perform a ceremonial fight. " We celebrate the rebirth of the sun, not the son," said Kate West, High Priestess of a Wiccan coven in Cheshire. This was the one adopted by Christians sometime around the 4th century as the birthday of Jesus. God Bless Ye Merry Gentlemen - Trad/carol 3. Oh Little Town of Bethlehem - Trad/carol 6. The Yule log, (usually made from a piece of wood saved from the previous year) is burned in … This is the festival of light out of darkness and the tradition of lighting candles is ever popular. The oak tree symbolises the summer But, in common with many Christians, Mr Sargam said: Druids, the priestly class in ancient Celtic society, celebrated the festival of Alban Arthuan (also known as Yule) at the time of the Winter solstice. Druids, a pagan religious order dating back to Celtic Britain, believe Stonehenge was a center of spiritualism more than 2,000 years ago. For 17 years, our presentation of A Christmas Celtic Sojourn has entertained and enlightened audiences throughout New England during this darkest time of the year. Big feasts were generally laid on by the rich to feed their poorer neighbours. Christmas owes its roots to the ancient Roman holiday of Saturnalia, which was a pagan festival which was celebrated from December 17-25 each year. he said. Happy Christmas War Is Over - John Lennon 5. $11.99 $ 11. Decorating the Christmas tree was originally a pagan Irish celebration. In pre-Christian times they warded off evil spirits. The date of Christmas was most likely taken from the Celtic winter solstice. Often, the traditional prayers from remote locations contain a mix of Christian and pagan thoughts! Yet many of the holiday’s ritual are centered deep in old Irish and Celtic traditions. The Winter Solstice period was called Jul in Old Norse — a word still used today, as there is no actual word for “Christmas” in modern Scandinavian languages. He and his circle of about 20 warmly-dressed Pagans celebrate the festival of "light and healing" by holding a torchlit procession around a maze near Winchester. he said. Many Pagans say that Christmas was superimposed over their great year-end festivals which were very popular in the Graeco-Roman world. (32) In Celtic tradition, trees were considered sacred because they were the homes of deities and spirits. Back to top | BBC News Home | BBC Homepage Free Shipping by Amazon. The giving of Christmas gifts relates to the winter solstice which was a time when gifts were exchanged between clans and chieftains as a means of renewing ties and friendship. The term of Pagan covers Wiccans, better known as witches, followers of the Northern Tradition who base their beliefs on Norse and old northern European beliefs, and also Druidism. Firstly, the customs of giving presents, eating too much and generally having fun comes from the Roman festival Saturnalia which used to be celebrated around December 17. "The commercialisation is not something we like ... to make this time of year an overtly commercial affair is inappropriate.". In light of pandemic, Brian O’Donovan offers a virtual A Christmas Celtic Sojourn for you to enjoy, gathered with loved ones in the safety of your own homes. Add flour and baking powder. Many Pagans say that Christmas was superimposed over their great year-end festivals which were very popular in the Graeco-Roman world. The 17 year-tradition of A Christmas Celtic Sojourn continues!. Decorating the Christmas tree was originally a pagan Irish celebration. Called Yule, it is one of the traditional Celtic fire festivals and marks the return of the light after the longest night of the year. "It's certainly too cold at this time of year to run about with no clothes on," said Dhyan Sargam, a witch from Berkshire. Stonehenge is a celebrated venue of festivities during the winter solstice - the shortest day of the year in the northern hemisphere - and it attracts thousands of revelers, spiritualists and tourists. Many customs created around Yule are identified with Christmas today. In modern day the holly represents the crown of thorns, the ivy the pre Christian era. "I'm not a Pagan because I'm anti-Christian, I'm a Pagan because I believe in a variety of Pagan deities." "For us we decided to have fireworks to mark the return of light. It was hung in the house and the man had the right to kiss any girl that stood under it. Traditionally, this festival marked the renewal of hope. Burning the Yule log in the fire is a pre Christian rite of honor to the Mother Goddess. She said that many Pagans do celebrate Christmas, but mainly for the children and "you are unlikely to see a nativity scene in a witches house". Decorations celebrated the three deities, the sun, moon and star and some … By Sarah Franklin. ©. Tags: pagan, celtic, yule, wiccan, festival, midwinter, solstice, traditional, alternative, myth, viking, norse, christmas "Then we drum and chant to bring up the sun" said Ms West, whose coven, called the Hearth of Hecate, wears black robes for the occasion "because they don't show the dirt as much as white ones." The Pagan Federation, an umbrella group for Pagan organisations, describes Paganism as a spiritual nature-venerating belief system rooted in the ancient nature religions of the world. Arrives before Christmas Only 2 left in stock - order soon. Saturn was the Roman God of agriculture and plenty, and gift giving symbolised the redistribution of wealth from the rich to the poor during the season of greatest hardship. I lay my head to rest, and in doing so, lay at your feet the faces I have seen, the voices I have heard, (see also 'Prayers from Carmina Galetica - ancient Celtic prayers) New Blessings in the 'Celtic' style. Ms West said that the winter solstice was not the most important Pagan ceremony for Wiccans, that distinction goes to their new year at Hallowe'en. Ancient Celtic religion, commonly known as Celtic paganism, comprises the religious beliefs and practices adhered to by the Iron Age people of Western Europe now known as the Celts, roughly between 500 BCE and 500 CE, spanning the La Tène period and the Roman era, and in the case of the Insular Celts the British and Irish Iron Age. Leaving a candle in the window of the house to guide Mary and Joseph on their way to Bethlehem to give birth was inspired by an old Celtic ritual of lighting a way for the spirits to pass peacefully. Seasonal rites vary among different sorts of Pagans from full-scale services with special robes, chalices and the lighting of candles to a little light meditation. Firstly, the customs of giving presents, eating too much and generally having fun comes from the Roman festival Saturnalia which used to be celebrated around December 17. The pies were not very large, and it was thought lucky to eat one mince pie on each of the twelve days of Christmas (ending with Epiphany, the 6th of January). "Then we drum and chant to bring up the sun" said Ms West, whose coven, called the Hearth of Hecate, wears black robes for the occasion "because they don't show the dirt as much as white ones.". The holly bush represents the winter, it battles with the oak tree twice a year The holly and the oak tree represent the two opposites of winter and summer respectively. The Celtic Spirit: Daily Meditations for the Turning Year. Called Yule, it is one of the traditional Celtic fire festivals and marks the return of the light after the longest night of the year. Decorations celebrated the three deities, the sun, moon and star and some decorations represented the souls of those who died. According to historian Melissa Snell, mince pies (so called because they contained shredded or minced meat) were baked in medieval times in oblong casings to represent Jesus’ crib, and it was important to add three spices (cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg) for the three gifts given to the Christ child by the Magi. When they get to the middle of the maze, they say a few healing prayers and go home and have a big party. Food left for Santa Claus comes from the Gaelic tradition of leaving food for Mary and Joseph on their journey to Bethlehem. Arrives before Christmas. Celtic Wind’s Pagan Christmas Bash ‍♂️ ‍⬛ Songs: 1. Celtic Christmas Sweatshirt - Pentagram Wicca - Celtic Triquetra Pagan - Celtic Christmas Sweatshirt - Triple moon Wicca Wicca Sweatshirt. 4.5 out of 5 stars 1,135. Decorating the Christmas tree was originally a pagan Irish celebration. A magnificent lineup of musicians, singers, and dancers from around the world share Celtic, Pagan, … Ms West, who is also an author on the subject of witchcraft, estimates that there are roughly 20,000 Pagans in Britain today and says it was a rapidly growing religion: "It's is the thinking person's religion ... with nobody to intercede between you and your god and no one to tell you what to think" she said. The holly and the oak tree represent the two opposites of winter and summer respectively. Historical debate has been raging for a long time over the exact date of the birth of Jesus Christ, with estimates ranging from sometime in September to much later in February. Historical debate has been raging for a long time over the exact date of the birth of Jesus Christ, with estimates ranging from sometime in September to much later in February. Eating mince pies. When they get to the middle of the maze, they say a few healing prayers and go home and have a big party. For modern Pagans, the solstice is the most important time. They picked this area in particular because it is close to Twyford Down, the site of a contentious road bypass which some activists argued was environmentally damaging. The term of Pagan covers Wiccans, better known as witches, followers of the Northern Tradition who base their beliefs on Norse and old northern European beliefs, and also Druidism. Eat, drink and be merryPagans light candles to welcome back the light Atheist activists, on the other hand, are meant to check things carefully. 99. In 1659, a law was established in Massachusetts outlawing the celebration of Christmas, with the exception of church attendance. However, she features prominently in mythology and is not just a destroyer, but also a creator goddess. Candles. It is often called Yule, after the Scandinavian tradition, or Mother-Night from the Anglo-Saxon tradition. Pagan Claus - A look at Christmas Symbols, The Holidays of Witchcraft - Witches' Voice. Ridgley, © 2021 by JF Ridgley, All rights reserved. At this festival there were torchlit processions, lots of songs, present giving, fortune telling and people would decorate their houses with all sorts of greenery to symbolise new life. In essence, Yule symbolizes the renewing cycles of life, as well as rebirth, rejuvenation, and growth. Borrowing from Irish Central, I have learned about how the Celtic people have influenced our Christmas ho Christmas has become so universal that we almost certainly forget its roots. Ms West, who is also an author on the subject of witchcraft, estimates that there are roughly 20,000 Pagans in Britain today and says it was a rapidly growing religion: "It's is the thinking person's religion ... with nobody to intercede between you and your god and no one to tell you what to think" she said. A church I was formerly a member of, which condemned Christmas observance as paganism, for almost sixty years, today has turned its back on its former beliefs, and encourages its members to observe this pagan mid-winter festival "in honor of Christ"! The tradition continues today. Christians and the more secular Christmas revellers may be relieved to learn that Pagans in Britain do not tend to cavort around holly bushes stark naked, or "skyclad", to celebrate their version of Christmas. The ritual involves gangs of youths in rural Ireland hunting a wren on December 26th, St.Stephen’s Day. Christians and the more secular Christmas revellers may be relieved to learn that Pagans in Britain do not tend to cavort around holly bushes stark naked, or "skyclad", to celebrate their version of Christmas. " The early Puritan settlers did not accept the German tradition initially because of its cultic roots. It was on this day that they ceremonially gathered mistletoe from oak trees. Christmas trees did begin as a pagan tradition as early as the fourth century C.E., according to ABC News. The Origins of Christmas In the 8th century, the traditional twelve-day pagan festival was declared a sacred season by the Church, and it became the Twelve Days of Christmas, with peaks at December 25th, January 1st, and January 6th. "For us we decided to have fireworks to mark the return of light. The third celebration is New Year's Eve, originally dedicated to the two-faced Roman god Janus, who looked both forward and back. Today in Ireland a fire on Christmas morning is traditional in many homes regardless of weather. by Caitlin Matthews ... Gothic Bracelet for Celtic Pagan. "The commercialisation is not something we like ... to make this time of year an overtly commercial affair is inappropriate." She said that many Pagans do celebrate Christmas, but mainly for the children and "you are unlikely to see a nativity scene in a witches house". Pagan families would bring a live tree into the home so the wood spirits would have a place to keep warm in the cold winter months - food and treats were hung on the branches for the spirits to eat. Arrives before Christmas. Away In A Manger - Trad/carol 2. But the most important date in the festive season for Pagans is the winter solstice which always takes place around December 21. Longest night of the holiday ’ s day back to Celtic Britain, believe Stonehenge was a center of more... As soon as Mon, Dec 21 left in stock - order soon - ancient Celtic )! 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