Resources for Celtic Pagans

Many of our readers at About Paganism/Wicca are interested in the magic, folklore, and beliefs of the ancient Celts. Learn about the Celtic gods and goddesses, the tree months of the Celtic year, and books to read if you're interested in Celtic Paganism.

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Gallery of the Old Library, Trinity College, Dublin. Photo Credit: Bruno Barbier/Robert Harding World Imagery/Getty Images
If you're interested in following a Celtic Pagan path, there are a number of books that are useful for your reading list. Although there are no written records of the ancient Celtic people, there are a number of reliable books by scholars that are worth reading. Some of the books on this list focus on history, others on legend and mythology. While this is by no means a comprehensive list of everything you need to understand Celtic Paganism, it's a good starting point, and should help you learn at least the basics of honoring the gods of the Celtic peoples. More »
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The oak tree has long been venerated by people of many cultures as a symbol of strength and power. Image by Images Etc Ltd/Moment Mobile/Getty Images
The Celtic Tree Calendar is a calendar with thirteen lunar divisions. Most contemporary Pagans use fixed dates for each "month", rather than following the waxing and waning lunar cycle. If this was done, eventually the calendar would fall out of sync with the Gregorian year, because some calendar years have 12 full moons and others have 13. The modern tree calendar is based on a concept that letters in the ancient Celtic Ogham alphabet corresponded to a tree. More »
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Image by Anna Gorin/Moment Open/Getty Images
Wondering about some of the major deities of the ancient Celtic world? Although the Celts consisted of societies all over the British Isles and parts of Europe, some of their gods and goddesses have become a part of modern Pagan practice. Here are some of the deities honored by the ancient Celtic peoples. More »
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What are the origins of the word "Mabon"?. Image by Andrew McConnell/Robert Harding World Imager/Getty Images

Although the word Druid conjures up visions of Celtic Reconstructionism to many people, groups like Ár nDraíocht Féin welcome members of any religious path within the Indo-European spectrum. ADF says, “We're researching and interpreting sound modern scholarship (rather than romantic fantasies) about the ancient Indo-European Pagans - the Celts, Norse, Slavs, Balts, Greeks, Romans, Persians, Vedics, and others.” More »

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What is a Reconstructionist Group?

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Image by Ian Forsyth/Getty Images News

A reconstructionist, or recon, tradition is one based upon actual historical writings and attempts to literally reconstruct the practice of a specific culture. Let's look at some different recon groups out there in the community.

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What do we mean when we use the term "Celtic"?. Image by Anna Gorin/Moment Open/Getty Images
For many people, the term “Celtic” is a homogenized one, popularly used to apply to cultural groups located in the British Isles and Ireland. However, from an anthropological standpoint, the term “Celtic” is actually fairly complex. Rather than meaning just people of Irish or English background, Celtic is used by scholars to define a specific set of language groups, originating both in the British Isles and in the mainland of Europe. More »
Make your own Ogham staves to use for divination. Image © Patti Wigington 2009
Ogham staves are a popular method of divination among Pagans who follow a Celtic-focused path. Although there are no records of how staves might have been used in divination in ancient times, there are a number of ways that they can be interpreted. There are 20 original letters in the Ogham alphabet, and five more that were added later on. Each corresponds to a letter or sound, as well as a tree or wood. More »
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Lay your cards out as shown in the diagram to use the Celtic Cross spread. Image by Patti Wigington 2008
The Tarot layout known as the Celtic Cross is one of the most detailed and complex spreads used. It's a good one to use when you have a specific question that needs to be answered, because it takes you, step by step, through all the different aspects of the situation. Basically, it deals with one issue at a time, and by the end of the reading, when you reach that final card, you should have gotten through all the many facets of the problem at hand. More »