I need some friggin’ order in my life. Me + unlimited free time = reading fanfiction all day. So, now that I have a semi-regular job (we load a glaze kiln Wednesday! Woot!), I have started to pick up my bits. Matter of fact, I should be typing up some divination results right now >.> Oh well, I’m sick so I have time -.-
But, back to the main thrust of this particular post. Recently, I have been offering stop-gap candles to the gods (can’t offer food because of ninja ants, trying to decide on incense). Normally I have at least a votive candle going for the main offerings, with tealights for spells or specific petitions. But, due to my candle cupboard looking a tad bit bare, I decided to start using up tealights.
There wasn’t any great big “Give us some pillar candles, fool!” moment, just a gentle feeling (from me, not Them) of “What the fuck is this shit?”. I can still afford better than some 4 hour tealights, so why, again, am I offering them? Back into the candle stash I go, and I pull out 3 pillar candles, all the same size and company maker. One is a creamy white-yellow and smells of malted vanilla. One is cedary with hints of vanilla and is a sagey green. The third is mottled dark blue, and smells of jasmine.
Now, the eternal question- who gets what?
Perhaps I better explain the who before I assign the what. My main god is Manannan mac Lir. I found him in my late Llewellyn period and he’s stuck with me ever since. I honor my ancestors as a group, and as individuals as space allows. For the last few months I have been lighting a candle for, and I quote, “all spirits benevolent to me that I do not know the names of”. This has now been renamed to “land wights”. I’m still living on the same plot of land that I grew up on, so I feel pretty comfortable around here, with them.
So. Three “groups”, three candles. Fairly simple. Blue candle goes to sea god, green candle goes to land spirits, white to ancestors (bones and a prior tendency to offer them vanilla. Perfecto.). Where are the matches, I can never find the mat-
I have a lightbulb moment!
Land, Sea, and Sky!
The idea of Land , Sea, and Sky is fairly common in the Celtic pagan scene. My version follows thusly:
The sea is forever sandwiched between the sky above and the earth below. As such, it acts as a liminal space where the two can meet. Manannan (a gatekeeper deity already) rules the Sea and the way between the different words. The land is comprised of local spirits (fae, tree spirits, land spirits, local water spirits, landbound dead, etc.) that change as you change your position on land. The sky is the place the dead go when they don’t want to stay here anymore, or when they are ready to be embodied again. This is a personal interpretation, not just because I came up with it, but because it revolves around me. I become the center point of the three separate groups. If I wasn’t here, they wouldn’t meet in exactly the same way.
I am the axis mundi.
Land beneath me, Sky above me, Sea around me.
By knowing who They are, I know who I am, like a spiritual Venn diagram. The idea kinda blew my mind for a while. I know it doesn’t address the Otherworld or the Underworld, but it doesn’t have to. They are separate from me, not invested in me. The land spirits are (well, kind of. I guess I’m more interested in them, but still, I live here and I might as well be polite to the neighbors), my ancestors are (I doubt I am the only one of their line that venerates them, but I still venerate them, so the connection is there), and Manannan is. I can say, without embarrassment, that I am special. Would the world fall apart if I didn’t worship these groups? Of course not. But by worshiping them, I like to think that I made the world a little better, if only by making myself a little better.
So here’s my first step on this path. Wish me luck 🙂