I've been reading some celtic myths - mainly Irish and Welsh - and I've noticed that a lot of the tales talk about the celtic gods as if they're a thing of the past. I suppose when the myths were first recorded, the celtic cultures of those places would've probably been a thing of the past to the authors. In the Children of Lir story explicit reference is made to the death of the Tuatha Dé Danaan - In the version I read anyway (Ellis Mammoth Book of Celtic Myths and Legends).
For those interested in celtic culture or who worship those gods, what do you think about this? I've read of druids who take inspiration from the celtic myths and gods and worship them, but surely this would be a problem to some?
Sorry if I'm being vague - I'm aware that the Irish celtic culture is very different from the Welsh and Cornish, as well as the other celtic areas. I just want to know if anyone else has been confused by this?
Re: Did the Celtic gods die? By: Lark Moderator / Knowledgeable
Post # 2 Jan 26, 2019
Part of the problem here is that the Celts had an oral tradition and did not write down their myths and legends. These stories were not written down until several centuries after the Celtic peoples had been Christianised and they were written down by Christian monks. To their way of thinking the Celtic gods were dead or had never existed at all
But there are thousands of modern followers of the Celtic gods who find that these gods remain alive and well in their ancient lands and in the hearts of those who believe in them.
The celtic gods are still alive, just their influence has weakened. Gods are unkillable as their names binds them into existence. Even if it's just in literature. A god can never truly die, they end up in a sort of comatose state.
Re: Did the Celtic gods die? By: Nymree / Beginner
Post # 5 Mar 05, 2019
This makes sense - you can definitely feel the Christian perspective behind some of these stories, especially in the ones with the evil magician-like Druids!
And the idea of a name tying to a deity is an interesting one, which agrees with my philosophy personally on words and names as spiritually powerful.
Celtic gods are just like any other spirit...eternal, no end to their existence... but incorporeal. As a devotee of this deity, I'd say he never really "died", he was rematerialized into the Earth. But this never actually "physically" happened anyway, it is just a metaphor.
Druids are like bards in the sense that word of mouth continues past the litany of a long dead spell/rite. They wouldn't touch nature like a living ceremony, rather they pass without touch like a wind cast. The wind flowing without sense or origin, it just continues if natural without alteration. The myths already being final, there is nothing new to add to the sphere of influence. In truth, it would be a woven tapestry, more than a fresh candle. The gods continue, regardless, whether remembered or figured, being defined and finite to a human palette, but unmeasureable to it's natural influence. As far as I personally figure, life is a constant wavelength like radio waves in space, expanding but reaching past measured means. I hope that helped, my teacher is druid hierophant in teacher degree.