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Author Topic: Welsh Gods and Goddesses  (Read 17465 times)
Malkin
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« Reply #15: April 02, 2007, 07:40:59 pm »

Do you think Modron and Mabon should be taken off the list? Merlin and Taleisin added?

My thoughts are this...

If Mabon and Modron are going to be included, then all other Arthurian figures should be included. Likewise, if Arthur, Merlin, Taliesin etc are to be excluded, then Mabon and Modron should be excluded as well.

If figures like Cu Chulainn or Fionn and his Fionna are going to be included in the Irish pantheon list, then Arthurian figures should be included in the Welsh pantheon list.

And if such figures are included in either list, I think we're going to have to address what makes a mythological or folkloric figure "divine," or at least worthy of worship, propitiation or contemplation.
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« Reply #16: April 02, 2007, 08:53:17 pm »

I can't recall Mabon or Modron ever being named explicitly as gods in the Mabinogion.  I can recall scholars interpreting them as gods, as archetypal figures, and that's where all of my understanding of them (as well as Taliesin and Merlin) as gods.


I'm sorry if I am coming across a little terse--in all honesty, I was just curious to see if others honored Arthurian figures as gods, because I know some people who do.

It has always been my understanding that the terms simply mean mother and child, used as generic terms for each.  All mothers are Modron,  all infents are Mabon.
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« Reply #17: April 03, 2007, 08:41:52 am »

My thoughts are this...

If Mabon and Modron are going to be included, then all other Arthurian figures should be included. Likewise, if Arthur, Merlin, Taliesin etc are to be excluded, then Mabon and Modron should be excluded as well.

If figures like Cu Chulainn or Fionn and his Fionna are going to be included in the Irish pantheon list, then Arthurian figures should be included in the Welsh pantheon list.

I agree.

And if such figures are included in either list, I think we're going to have to address what makes a mythological or folkloric figure "divine," or at least worthy of worship, propitiation or contemplation.

Hmph.  I figured it might come to that.  Undecided 

Deity, in my belief, is what is specifically worshipped.  These deities are known, and stated as higher beings of power, in the stories.  Everyone else is a "guide," not necessarily worshipped, but still worthy of contemplation, and to be listened to.

For example... Taliesin is one of my guides; he is my teacher, and I listen to him very closely.  But... he has told me over and over again that he's no god, and I shouldn't call him a god.  But that doesn't mean I can't benefit from his wisdom, nor that I shouldn't give him a great deal of respect.

The only proper deity I'm in contact with right now is Brigid, and it is very clear to me that she is a deity and needs to be approached as such, and respected, and worshipped as such... no matter how close we are in our relationship.


Other heroes, such as Arthur and Merlin, fall, to me, under the name of "guide," even if they retain qualities of earlier gods.  I say stick to the stories: if Arthur and Merlin appear as humans (albeit with a great deal of power) in the stories, they should be understood as such, even if you read somewhere that Merlin is really the Cernunnos equivalent (which could be true) who has morphed over the centuries.  If you see and interact with Merlin as he appears in the Arthurian tales... he's a guide.
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« Reply #18: April 03, 2007, 09:34:45 am »

I agree.

Hmph.  I figured it might come to that.  Undecided 

Deity, in my belief, is what is specifically worshipped.  These deities are known, and stated as higher beings of power, in the stories.  Everyone else is a "guide," not necessarily worshipped, but still worthy of contemplation, and to be listened to.

Since there are so many figures that fall into the "significant, but not God" category, maybe we can include them as a subset of the list?  "These people are not Gods, but are significant as guides/teachers" ?
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« Reply #19: April 03, 2007, 10:36:07 am »

Since there are so many figures that fall into the "significant, but not God" category, maybe we can include them as a subset of the list?  "These people are not Gods, but are significant as guides/teachers" ?

That sounds like a good idea.

I would pretty much echo Finn's post. The majority of what I do to date has been UPG. My interest in this project is to change that Smiley I've spent the last couple of days searching the internet for info on Welsh dieties.  I have yet to see Arthur  classed as diety, but Taliesen, Mabon and Modron seem to make most of the deity lists that I have I have come across and occasionally I have seen Merlin. Actually a couple of sites even had Irish deities like Dagda thrown in for good measure  Cheesy

I'm lost. Does someone else want to take a crack at a divided list?

ETA I thought I would tack on this as a sample of some of the lists I have looked at. There are a few on here that I didn't put on the list at the start of the thread.
http://www.timelessmyths.com/celtic/welsh.html
« Last Edit: April 03, 2007, 10:40:35 am by Sparrow, Reason: to add link. » Logged
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« Reply #20: April 03, 2007, 11:04:39 am »

I agree.

Hmph.  I figured it might come to that.  Undecided 

Deity, in my belief, is what is specifically worshipped.  These deities are known, and stated as higher beings of power, in the stories.  Everyone else is a "guide," not necessarily worshipped, but still worthy of contemplation, and to be listened to.

For example... Taliesin is one of my guides; he is my teacher, and I listen to him very closely.  But... he has told me over and over again that he's no god, and I shouldn't call him a god.  But that doesn't mean I can't benefit from his wisdom, nor that I shouldn't give him a great deal of respect.

The only proper deity I'm in contact with right now is Brigid, and it is very clear to me that she is a deity and needs to be approached as such, and respected, and worshipped as such... no matter how close we are in our relationship.


Other heroes, such as Arthur and Merlin, fall, to me, under the name of "guide," even if they retain qualities of earlier gods.  I say stick to the stories: if Arthur and Merlin appear as humans (albeit with a great deal of power) in the stories, they should be understood as such, even if you read somewhere that Merlin is really the Cernunnos equivalent (which could be true) who has morphed over the centuries.  If you see and interact with Merlin as he appears in the Arthurian tales... he's a guide.

I keep meaning to stick my nose in here, and keep getting sidetracked. Undecided

I think that one important thing to remember is that in the Celtic world (and in others, too) that heroes were worshipped, so worship does not necessarily make one a god.
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« Reply #21: April 03, 2007, 01:52:14 pm »

I think that one important thing to remember is that in the Celtic world (and in others, too) that heroes were worshipped, so worship does not necessarily make one a god.

Big "oh" moment there.  Thanks!
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« Reply #22: April 03, 2007, 08:09:04 pm »

I think that one important thing to remember is that in the Celtic world (and in others, too) that heroes were worshipped, so worship does not necessarily make one a god.

... Yep... another DUH moment thwaps me on the head.


So I guess the question would be: what does make one a god?  I think there was a thread back on the old board that went into that little knot...

Okay, well, I suppose that fact drops my argument (and most of my UPG when interacting with Taliesin at least) and clears the air enough for me to ask again: should we include these heroes and characters in our gods and goddesses list?

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« Reply #23: April 04, 2007, 08:25:59 pm »

So I guess the question would be: what does make one a god?  I think there was a thread back on the old board that went into that little knot...

Heh, I was about to ask that myself.

This discussion has helped with my ongoing thoughts on Scathach (who has never claimed to be divine to me - interesting.)  I think She's liminal.  Smiley
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« Reply #24: April 04, 2007, 08:58:11 pm »

This discussion has helped with my ongoing thoughts on Scathach (who has never claimed to be divine to me - interesting.)  I think She's liminal.  Smiley

I'm glad; it's helped me out too!  Taliesin is quite important to me, and all such "liminal" beings I think are worth these kinds of considerations. 

That said, my gut feeling (aka my UPG) is still saying that they shouldn't be included in these lists as gods and goddesses; they should be mentioned elsewhere.
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« Reply #25: April 04, 2007, 10:56:03 pm »

That said, my gut feeling (aka my UPG) is still saying that they shouldn't be included in these lists as gods and goddesses; they should be mentioned elsewhere.

Yeah, I can see that.  "Heroes, semi-divine beings, liminal ones..."

The Celtic myths I've read seem to be fairly casual (not really the right word, but I can't figure out a better one) about divinity.  Subtle, maybe?  I remember reading the story about Pwyll in the Mabinogi - if I didn't know that Annwn (sp?) was the Otherworld, I would have guessed it was just another mortal kingdom.  (Which could have been part of the point, I suppose.)
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« Reply #26: April 05, 2007, 03:06:42 am »

Maybe we should have a list of "Ancestral Heroes to Venerate."

Also, let me add to others' UPG: Arthurian figures, in my experience, have never told me they were gods. In fact, they've stressed their humanness. Though it's apparent that there's some sort of godly force behind them sometimes - that Arthur is representative of a "title" or role that he fulfilled/fulfills. If that makes any sense. I'm trying not to use the word "archetype," though I guess that's the closest I can get.
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Foxglove: We did this. Or something like this. We had water and salt, not blood. We invoked the goddess in her aspect as the moon. We called down her power...
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Foxglove: Well, it felt good at the time. Empowering.
Thessaly: Hmph.
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« Reply #27: April 05, 2007, 12:41:47 pm »

Maybe we should have a list of "Ancestral Heroes to Venerate."

Also, let me add to others' UPG: Arthurian figures, in my experience, have never told me they were gods. In fact, they've stressed their humanness. Though it's apparent that there's some sort of godly force behind them sometimes - that Arthur is representative of a "title" or role that he fulfilled/fulfills. If that makes any sense. I'm trying not to use the word "archetype," though I guess that's the closest I can get.

I've had the same experience, and I agree about the "archetype" thing.

So I guess we can stuff this can of worms I raised back into its can, and we can say that we'll put these figures on a seperate list?
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« Reply #28: April 05, 2007, 01:42:44 pm »

over the last few days I have been trying to figure out who might belong on the Gods list and who might be considered hero or influencial but not gods.
I have to say that the more I dig the more confused I get  Sad Some seem obviously Gods, and are refered to as gods in all the places I searced.

Don, Govannon, Arianrhod, Dylan,Llew, Llyr, Manawyddan, Rhiannon, Cerridwen and some others that aren't on the tip of my toungue.

Some that have me thoroughly confused because I am confused about whether they are gods or heros or ... something other, even though I see their names on diety lists, are Gwynn ap Nudd, Blodeuwedd, Bran, Branwen, Cyhiraeth (was a goddess who became a fairy spirit?)

...and some extra confusing ones
Math, Pryderi, and Beli Mawr who is definitly classed as a god in most places but I have read many varying descriptions of who he is. These are some of the things I have read about Beli Mawr - God of light, The mortal father of a pre-christian king, Ancestor diety, Giant, Son of the giant Mynogan (who I can't seem to find any info on), He is also listed as an actual ruler of the kingdom of Gwynedd in the year c110 bc.   

Can somebody shed some light? I would have assumed that typing up a diety list would have been one of the easiest tasks concerning this project. It is becoming clear that I am more lost than I ever thought I could be  Undecided

Llyr and his son Manawyddan both seem to be acknowledged as Sea Gods. So is Dylan. Is this because they come from different family lines? Does each family have it's own god/dess of agriculture,sea, etc?

Granted most of my info is coming from internet searches...maybe that's my problem-dodgy information. I saw many sites where the Welsh and Irish dieties were all mixed up. Boann made a couple of Welsh lists.

Does anyone have an oppinion of the information on the information contained in the House of Drake, Jones Celtic Encyclopedia or Timelessmyths.com.

Can someone ppoint me toward some relyable sources?

Thanks,
Sparrow
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« Reply #29: April 05, 2007, 01:46:39 pm »

over the last few days I have been trying to figure out who might belong on the Gods list and who might be considered hero or influencial but not gods.
I have to say that the more I dig the more confused I get  Sad Some seem obviously Gods, and are refered to as gods in all the places I searced.

Don, Govannon, Arianrhod, Dylan,Llew, Llyr, Manawyddan, Rhiannon, Cerridwen and some others that aren't on the tip of my toungue.

Some that have me thoroughly confused because I am confused about whether they are gods or heros or ... something other, even though I see their names on diety lists, are Gwynn ap Nudd, Blodeuwedd, Bran, Branwen, Cyhiraeth (was a goddess who became a fairy spirit?)

...and some extra confusing ones
Math, Pryderi, and Beli Mawr who is definitly classed as a god in most places but I have read many varying descriptions of who he is. These are some of the things I have read about Beli Mawr - God of light, The mortal father of a pre-christian king, Ancestor diety, Giant, Son of the giant Mynogan (who I can't seem to find any info on), He is also listed as an actual ruler of the kingdom of Gwynedd in the year c110 bc.   

Can somebody shed some light? I would have assumed that typing up a diety list would have been one of the easiest tasks concerning this project. It is becoming clear that I am more lost than I ever thought I could be  Undecided

Llyr and his son Manawyddan both seem to be acknowledged as Sea Gods. So is Dylan. Is this because they come from different family lines? Does each family have it's own god/dess of agriculture,sea, etc?

Granted most of my info is coming from internet searches...maybe that's my problem-dodgy information. I saw many sites where the Welsh and Irish dieties were all mixed up. Boann made a couple of Welsh lists.

Does anyone have an oppinion of the information on the information contained in the House of Drake, Jones Celtic Encyclopedia or Timelessmyths.com.

Can someone ppoint me toward some relyable sources?

Thanks,
Sparrow

I think what might be easier than typing up a god list is making a list of honored beings, and specifying on a case by case basis whether they are god, hero, etcetera. Ambiguities and differences in SPG can be focused on better that way, than making a million lists which all venn diagram each other.
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