Welcome to Everything you want to know about The Celts

Hello there! We are a modern day Northern European Style tribe called Maers Khohias. We are of both Norse and Celtic decent here. Come sit. Warm yourself by our fire!! We want you to feel at home as we share some of our Celtic tribe's hospitality. Come. Join in our sitting circle, round the central cauldron and have something to eat, in our Celtic round house. Once fed, sit back, relax, read and listen to some of our stories. Here you will find great information, taking you back in time to meet the ancestors.

If you have the opportunity to come in person to Crawford Bay, BC and take in our courses taught at our school, you'll hear more information, on the Celts and the Vikings, not shared here, as well as live music. We'd love to hear your stories too!!

In no time, you'll be dancing, sharing some good mead or ale and adding to the rooms boasts and toasts.
We Northern European Celts and Vikings are waiting for you.

Having and event? We offer lots of props to choose from as well as great musicians and entertainers. This will be the icing for your Celtic or Viking medieval style event. Need some costumes or warrior gear? We shall help you there too. ... Or Maybe you are the studious type and want to study Celtic ritual, dance, music and beliefs, or have a you have a gift. If so you might want to take a course from our Druid/Bard schools. See here.


Monday, March 26, 2012

The Story of the Celtic Tribes

Theories of where the Celtic and Scandinavian tribes came from - Chapter 1

Well there are many theories as to where these tribes came from and where they all spread to.  Instead of arguing here, I shall just say go and read the many theories yourselves.  I shall however give you a starting point, from my research and opinion.   I first say disregard all outdated information.  The newest information we have is that originally they were all one people who spread out across Europe & became many cultures.  They did not come from elsewhere, nor did the Picts or the beaker people.  The DNA project started in British isles in the late half of 2000's shows us hard proof evidence that that the bodies found previous to the ice-age and those afterwards (see cheddar man) are the exact same people who only moved down, when the ice age hit, to Spain & area, then back up to Gaul and other areas afterward.  They never met until they grew again until later and, if this is the case, they very well could be the persons who built Stonehenge. 

So don't read from outdated books, keep up with the new info and quit passing on info just because someone else said it. There is so much that is out there on many Celtic sites that has repeated nonsense, especially about the Gods, and calendars and more.   Don't repeat any knowledge until you've studied the texts yourself and the many opinions of scholars who've dedicated their lives to this research, so you can make an educated opinion.  I feel sorry for those new seekers trying to make a go of it and their mentors are persons who continue misinformation like the new-agey Celtic Reconstructionalists saying there is no proof that the Celts had the 4 directions in their believes and,...blah, blah..  Well definitely they did not practice Gerald's modern religion of Wicca and the way they use the four directions, so they are right in that way but come on, they were surrounded by people almost worldwide that had the four directions, including the first nations people and it just happened to not be in the Celtic tribal beliefs.  I would say  not true by common sense alone.

Most just plain can't read between the lines and weigh  theories. I am so happy and you who love their ancestors should be too that we know for an absolute fact now, that the Northern Europeans were already there, both pre and post ice-age. (See documentary "First Canadians"  DNA evidence Brian Sykes and much more that has been discover, too many to list. We also have proof that Celtic DNA is now found in some of the tested Canadian first Nations tribes - the Ojibwe for one, mixed with Asian.)

The DNA traced back to seven mothers.  This group eventually grew, split and moved to different parts of Europe, forming distinct different cultures but they all maintained similar beliefs which join them.  Greeks, Romans, Germans, Franks, Gauls. Britons, Scandinavians & so on.  The distinct customs and values evolved around the type of terrain and environment the tribe lived in.  Much evidence shows these tribes mixed blood constantly with other tribes and unlike popular assumption, they lived quite peaceful, prior to the famous 'Viking era' around 800 CE. 

I personally don't recommend reading all of the rigid or new age sites of amateurs or new faiths as they tend to pass on the same old information sited by others and form a narrow view.  Most focus on written proof in the writings of classical chroniclers and use only the Christianized Celtic myths which none have really read them in whole except for pieces found as it is very clear to me that they do not have an understanding on how to read them.  If one studies many cultures instead of their own, trying to be "different" they would soon find that they are so similar it isn't even funny.

I've also found that they totally neglect to look to other resources, which are written by the Celts themselves in Latin or Greek.  Yes the Celts wrote down things and were highly literate in these languages.  Another misnomer is that there is hardly any information or books to go on.  My gosh there are over 150 books still sitting around waiting to be translated.  We also have a huge text, the Brehon laws, welsh laws and the coligney calendar.  Yet not one of those persons has actually read anything with substance, instead reading new-age garbage.  There are even whole Celtic communities here in Canada in Nova Scotia and so on.  But alas, most new faiths or authors, cashing in on the Celtic train revival, don't have the ability to read between the lines or be bothered to put in the work of hard study.  Having said this I too was the same I admit, and 15 of my 30 year journey was spend 'assuming' right along with the rest of you but it because I was able to see the differences that Wicca was becoming as compared to the eclectic stuff out there now, this inspired me to change my path.  

I am now from the Maers Khohias Tradition which has nothing to do with Wicca.  I even studied my own family tree and on this new journey learned more than I had listening to others.  I also learned that many will argue and some will even abuse but I know what I've put the work in and what others think doesn't matter to me now. 

I will no longer go by what everyone else said.  I was wrong.  For example, We know for sure now that the Celts embraced and adopted many things and they were not a 'race' of people but were made up of many who joined along the way.  There is no such thing as one belief among them some umbrella "Celtic spirituality"  that is just naive.  That is like saying the First nations people follow one "Native spirituality".  They would laugh you off the reserve.  Each tribe has their own Gods, rituals, ways and beliefs.  But, It seems it is just human nature when one wants to to break away from their (parent) group, they want to be 'different', especially if they disagreed with their (parent) mentor.  Whether it was because of a falling out or other reasons, I say modern people can not even begin to understand a tribal people until they learn how to think tribal and not in the same ways as single family units do today.  it is more work to keep a diverse group together and easier to walk away.  No one wants to do hard work and learn dynamics of keeping a functioning and healthy group.  We all must focus on the similarities and stop segregation.

So below, I've listed tribes, some well known, some not, but one can develop a knowing about each tribe changing their legends according to their own areas terrain and experiences by reading many cultures not just one. To me it's very obvious, as you will see, they were once one people.  Even if you have a different belief as I , if one learns to just listen to another without denying first, we learn alot more.  This is a hard skill to learn.  Its called true listening which is without any preconceived ideas or skepticism, then researching on your own and bringing in new thought.  Just because a so called scholar, including myself says something does not mean he or she is correct.  It is only our opinions based on our materials found, our own life experience, beliefs within and so on.  Many factors to consider.  Being different is to be embraced and everyone opinion matters and in the end, its all  choice.

People trying to find their own identity and place in a lost tribal society, refuse to acknowledge we are all one human race ,all with the same basic needs and fears. The more we try to understand another through their eyes and focus on our similarities, instead of differences, the more we shall move to a new era and finally move away from following in the footsteps of the Bible denominations whose religion has killed and harmed more people in the fight to be 'right' and the 'only' way.

Pagan to Christian

The Celtic tribes in remote areas kept part of their traditions well into the 17th century and possibly beyond but remember, by the 400's, it was Celtic Christianity that was formed on old pagan beliefs.  Celtic Christianity was completely different than Roman Christianity which grew more rigid and became now the Roman Catholic faith which split into many more.

The Celtic tribes in the more central areas, touched by Roman influence were converted eve earlier, but remarkably the islands had their own style.  We call it a "Celtic church", and this term does not refer to the people but to a style of Christianity. People must not group the Celts as one spiritual group prior to this as they were a tribal peoples and thus those that are trying to find 'Celtic spirituality" are looking for something non-existent.  That is like one saying they like Native spirituality.  Which Native tribe??  Every one is completely different, with their own gods, rituals and belief system.

As for Celtic Christianity, Pelagius was a famous Priest who preached the style closest to what they believed but the whole point is that miraculously, from the evidence found, they maintained many of their traditions through a Christian twist.

Seven Celtic Nations
   (the actual Celtic placenames & accepted Languages)
1) Alba -the old word for Scotland (people).
2) Cymru - Wales
3) Kernow - Cornwall
4) Mannin -  Isle of Man 
5) Galicia -  are Spanish Celts - Spain area 
6) Briezh -  Brittany
7) Eire - (Erin)  Old word for Ireland. 

Now the following are the accepted 7 Celtic Nations today but please keep in mind that these nations spread out much wider then the above areas and thus, the above is only depicting the major settlements of languages.

In each one of these nations, are again split into smaller groups called Tribes (Tuatha = tribe in Irish, Llwyth = in Welsh).  Each tribes developed their own and sometimes entirely different rites for funerals, births and other life and seasonal events.  Even their Gods were different in every tribe but even though the names changed, the memory of earlier stories about them, every tribe maintained similar themes. Now just because we name the accepted 7 nations of 'Celtic' areas, keep in mind that Celts also lived in Greece,  Italy, Belgium, Germany, areas of Denmark, into Asia, as well as Turkey and Australia.  To understand the breakdown can be quite a daunting task, so I will try and break it down in simple terms.

Each of their God's personalities also depended on the type of terrain they lived in, astronomy lore and what ancestors they chose to be descendant from - animal, nature or these turned into hero Gods, and of course their particular rituals.  These became incorporated as their own genealogy collection stories, each nation having their own unique collection.  For the Welsh it is the Mabinogi,  which is the proper name.  It has been misprinted  but more commonly referred to as the Mabinogion.   Each group or family of Gods assigned to each area or tribe.  For example the Welsh people  hold stories of Danu which was, most scholars agree, one tribe, where the stories of Llyr would be another tribe branched off.

So if I did not confused you too much, these regions are sub-divided even further, some with even smaller fines but the whole made up a tribe. 
What Happened to the Celts?

Well according to so many new age websites, they disappeared and there are very little remnants left to study.  What?  Oh my gosh there are still over 150 manuscripts just sitting there waiting to be translated, and many remote places still hold on to performing the traditions today.  The law books hold a wealth of information and are absolutely full of detail, giving us much incite on their daily life, virtues and rituals.  One only needs travel to Nova Scotia, Cape Breton and the like to also hear tales of those who came over.  I for one am of Scottish and Norse descent.  Heck the Scots pretty much made Canada.  The poor Irish fate was just as traumatic and some came here to Canada and the rest to the United states.  Moral;  Don't believe all you read!!  I tell my students all the time, to listen to me but always remember I am but one perspective.  New info comes all the time.  Just as a doctor should upgrade his knowledge, so should a Celtic scholar.  One day this information might become stagnant.
I also read a bunch of hog was that the Christians were so cruel they came into their country & wiped out the Celts and their religion.  The truth is that most of the mainstream Celts embraced Christianity wholeheartedly.  Yes there were also tribes in more remote areas who held on to pagan beliefs but both religions were very similar and they lived in harmony until much later.   The key is to remember that Celtic Christianity was totally different than Roman Christianity which turned into Catholicism.   Europe lived ate and breathed religion when the new faith came.  

When these horrific atrocities occurred, the witch hunts and later the Maleus Malificarum, this was not in the thriving Celtic period.  It was the English, Irish, Scots and Scandinavian people that were the ones who became cruel to their own people who did not follow Roman Christianity.  With Queen Elizabeth the 'Protestant' (Anglican) queen, she tolerated both faiths.  Even here for a few hundred years more into the 17th century in the very remote areas  people were still practicing pagan rites.
Although there were no more tribes, the same fighting between them remained the same except  it was no longer sending their sons to raid cattle for initiatory purpose and so on, but it was now religious wars which still go on to this day.  The English, which now are a mix of Spanish, French, Scots and mostly Norse people  (just look at the monarchy), in these earlier centuries considered  themselves 'civilized' and actually found the people who were in Scotland then, Highlanders especially, barbaric.  Sadly once all  Northern European tribes, the 'civilized' ones ended up killing many of their own kind.  They even tried to breed the culture out of the Scottish/Pict people by demanding the sons of Chieftain hereditary to be taught in English schools.  Later, the Highlanders had  even more atrocities happen to them - starvation, slavery, and almost genocide. 

In the clearances, most Scots moved to Canada and most Irish to the States.  Many married or joined with the local 1st Nations tribes forming the Metis, as they felt akin and held some of the old values .  Later  there was war over Canada when the strict fundamentalist French and English people came.  As said, these Celts had been both politically and religiously indoctrinated so long and more so than these others.

Like the First nations ways and beliefs were almost eradicated, most of the Northern European tribes were as well before them.  In fact, a high percentage of us who are of from European descent, have totally lost our connection to our ancestors, nature and our own culture and rituals.  Did you know our ancestors beliefs are parallel to the 1st nations people.  Go ahead and have a look around at the rest of the site, and discover the fascinating world of our Ancestors.  Check out the tidbits of information at our store as well.

Let's quit the whining about who did what to whom, whose right and whose wrong and just embrace the parts we like and get on with out own growth, and our own tribes.  Every tribe was different!!

by LaurieLee

Copyright June 12, 2010

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