This is a free course of 20 lessons. I have been wanting a more organized way, yet gentle entry into spiritual study. ADF felt like I was supposed to figure it all out at once, which is clearly difficult.
Some questions for you to think about:
What are the popular images (good and bad) associated with the Celtic countries and peoples? What feelings do these images evoke for you? Cernunnos, The Morrigan. Cernunnos is good feelings – money, fertility, rambling. the Morrigan seems very scary to me, and not one to involve oneself with lightly – these feelings, oddly, are how I think of Odin.
The land mass now called England was once inhabited by Celtic peoples, yet we no longer think of it as Celtic. Genetic tests have shown that quite a few people who consider themselves English are descendants of the Iron Age tribes. What are the factors that form or challenge both personal and national identity? What makes a person Celtic? Is it being descended from a particular bloodline, or being able to speak one of the languages, or having been raised within a certain culture, or having a spiritual relationship with certain Gods or spirits? Is a combination of two or more of these factors, or something else entirely? I tend toward Universalism, and while I do not consider myself Celtic (although I do have Scots and Welsh ancestors) . I do not think bloodline is important – many societies have very open adoption and clearly once adopted by a family, it is by the whole line. I do think that heritage does play a part in whether you consider yourself as a Celt though, being what you are most familar with, or you get interested in a certain ancestor or ancestor’s culture. I think that there is a chicken and egg question with the language. but I do think one is drawn to certain Gods (or the Gods draw certain people) and that is compelling. People get drawn to music or an aspect of a culture which can lead to deep engagement to the point of calling themselves part of that culture. As culture is a living breathing expanding and contracting thing, I think all these things have a part.
A practical task:
Try to find out something about the tribe that occupied the place you live in during the Iron Age. There may be items in local museums to look at, old hill forts you could visit, or books to read about any of the more prominent members of your local tribe.
The Washoe and Northern Paiute lived here then. Wovoka, the founder of the Ghost Dance religion was a Northern Paiute.