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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in Horned God epithets
In Which Our Intrepid Blogger Makes an Outrageous Claim

Hwæt, we seax-Hwiccum   in síð-dagum...
"Lo, we knife-Witches   in these latter days..."

 

Many peoples worship the Horned God—as god of all Red Life, why wouldn't they?—but to the Latter-Day Tribe of Witches, he is ours, our god in particular.

Why so? Easily answered.

The Horned is especial god of witches, ours to us, because we are his offspring.

As we see it, we are literally the Children of our God.

This is why the Swedish witches called him Antecessor: goer-before, ancestor.

Many tribes trace descent from a common ancestor. Scots Gaelic clann (pronounced klawn), the source of the English word clan, literally means “children (of).” In this, the Tribe (in Witch, that would be Thede) of Witches is no different from any other.

Why are some people witches and some not? Easily answered.

The Horned overshadows our fathers at the moment of our conception.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Antlers Forever

Gods know that I'm no great fan of Patricia Kenneally-Morrison's Kelts-in-Space series, The Keltiad, but that's not to say that, in her envisioning of what a pagan society might look like from the inside, she doesn't occasionally get things right.

Indeed, sometimes she gets them very right indeed.

PK-M's Kelts-in-Space know of a figure called the Caberfèidh, pronounced CAB-ber-fay. In Scots Gaelic, this means “stag's antlers.” In fact, he's no kind of fay at all—or maybe, on second thought, he is—but rather the pan-Keltic Antlered God Himself.

On Earth, Caberfèidh is the title of the hereditary chieftain of Clan Mackenzie. (“Clan” means “children”: hence, the “children of Mackenzie.” It's the Q-Celtic version of the word that's plant in P-Celtic Welsh, as in Plant Brân, the “children of Brân.”) A pretty felicitous image, this: the clan itself the stag, and the chief the very antlers thereof.

The metaphor is a profound one. That antlers are by nature deciduous, while the stag himself lives on, comments obliquely on the sacrificial nature of the chieftaincy.

Sure, and when it comes to the Caberfeidh, we're of one body with Him, indeed, and He Himself the Antlers.

And if you should hap to meet the Antlers Himself, be sure to say Him so.

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  • Jamie
    Jamie says #
    Mr. Posch, Who knows? Isolated off-world settlements might be ideal locations for pan-Pagan enclaves. Maybe not the future city
Why I Don't Call the Horned God 'Cernunnos'

The Horned God is assuredly one of the preeminent (and, I would contend, patron) gods of the Pagan Revival, and I would be willing to hazard a guess that in English-speaking Pagandom at large, He is named by the majority of His votaries as “Cernunnos.”

(Writer and thinker Ceisiwr Serith once remarked to me that an image search for “Cernunnos” turns up mostly modern, and very little ancient, art.)

But though the Horned is my heart-god and I offer to Him daily, I myself never call Him Cernunnos.

Why not?

To me, names are culture-specific—one could even say culture-bound—material. “Cernunnos” is a specifically Gaulish name, bound to a particular language, place, and people. I'm not a Gaul, I don't live in historic Gaul, and I don't speak Gaulish. Therefore, though I honor the Name and recognize it, I don't use it.

The same with “Herne,” “Pan,” or most other historic Names that you'd care to mention.

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  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Well, of course how you, or anyone else, conduct your spiritual lives, Greybeard, is no business of mine. But if one accepts my pr
  • Greybeard
    Greybeard says #
    Wait. What? We can't say Cernunnos because we aren't Gaulish? Can we say Ishtar if we aren't Babylonian? Can we say Diana if
  • Kile Martz
    Kile Martz says #
    Indeed, I don't think of him as antlered, but horned. I was born under the sign of the ram, was raised around cattle. I see the ho
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Thanks Joanna. Personally, I'm a big fan of precision in language. If that's pedantry, so mote it be. The issue that you raise is
  • Joanna van der Hoeven
    Joanna van der Hoeven says #
    Plus, Cernunnos is an antlered god, not a horned god Am I the only pedantic when it comes to this lol? Great blog post, great b

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Anvil of the Horned One

“That's the anvil of the Horned One,” a friend wrote to me recently, meaning a hard, but ultimately formative, situation.

As regards the situation, his analysis was bang on, but in the days that followed I've found myself reflecting again and again on that resonant phrase: the anvil of the Horned One.

In Old Craft, the God of Witches is (inter alia) a Smith-God: among his many by-names is Coal-Black Smith.

Back in the day, goes the story, when you had to cloak everything in the Church's names and stories, he came to be called—and so still is, by some—by the name of the Biblical smith, Tubal Cain. “The Clan of Tubal-Cain,” Bobby Cochrane (father of modern Old Craft) called his Royal Windsor coven: one clan in the Tribe of Witches.

The point here is that, as god of animals, he's also god of culture: the originator and teacher of the civilized arts. (Humans aren't the only animals possessed of culture, of course.) Hence smithery: the anvil, tongs, and hammer are his tokens.

Yet there's more than mythology here.

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  • Kile Martz
    Kile Martz says #
    KM is honored to be your muse for this particular post. ~ O, let me suffer on the anvil of the horned one so that he might forge
How the God of the Witches Saved the Lives of His People,  and Fell Like a Star from Heaven

The men with the bows creep closer to the firelight in the clearing. Sheriff's men, foresters all, they move quietly through the night woods.

The witches' sentries have already died silent deaths, raising no alarm.

Now the hunters' chiefest quarry stands directly before them.

From the trees, they watch as he mounts the altar before his adoring congregation: naked, shining, tall. He raises his arms, and the singing begins. His antlers seem to touch the trees. Between them, constellations revolve.

The first arrow takes him under the ribs, the next in the throat. Five, six, seven arrows follow, in rapid succession. The witches begin to scream. Their god topples from the stone, like a star falling from heaven.

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Keeper of the Book of England: Tracking Down a Pioneer of the Horned God Revival

Today, he's almost entirely forgotten.

But he was one of the pioneers of the Horned God revival in the 20th century.

Hans Holzer's 1969 book The Truth About Witchcraft was my second book about modern witchery. (The first was Sybil Leek's Diary of a Witch.) In it, he treats mostly with witchcraft of the Gardnerian and Gardnerian-derived varieties.

But A. Damon was different.

Damon lives with his wife upriver, writes Holzer, “within the frame-work of witch law,” as he put it when he invited me to drop in for a visit, and his “logo” or symbol is an interesting combination of the Horned God's horns and sex organs within a triangle (150).

My 14-year old's ears pricked up immediately.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    From your lips to Old Hornie's furry, pointed ear, Mike. Holzer mentions his pagan film-in-the-making in practically every one of
  • Mike W
    Mike W says #
    Huson, Holzer, Leek. Some of the early influences on me as well. I corresponded with Mike Howard also, he was a real scholar as
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    When I saw Fred Addams' Apple Kore on the Jacket of New Pagans, it was love at first sight. Nigh on 50-some years later, I still
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    I remember reading Holzer and Leek back in the 70's along with Journey to Ixtlan and Sacred Mushroom and the Cross. I don't think
  • Chris Sherbak
    Chris Sherbak says #
    Oh yes - I was very influenced by them as well. (Darkover too! And Kurtz's Deryni.) I highlighted "New Pagans" because I started o

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
World Stag

They say that once long ago,

when the sky was in danger of falling,

he caught it up on his antlers

and held it,

and that way we weren't all crushed.

They say that it's him

as holds up the sky on his antlers

still, to this day.

So that's why they call him the World Stag,

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