Monday, April 26, 2010

The wolf in Druidism:

Faol, the Wolf
"The sign-bearing wolf shall lead his troops. And surround Cornwall with
his tail"

-from The Prophecies of Merlin
The wolf is a powerful totem animal, embodying many od the qualities of the hound, but including a wildness not found in the domesticated dog. One of the Gaelic names for the wolf is Madadh-Allaidh, the wild dog, and the Celts were known for their cross-breeding of wolves with hounds to produce a powerful fighting dog for battle.
In Ireland there is a "Fort of the Wolves" and a legend which tells of a struggle between the hero Cu-Chulainn and the war-goddess the Morrigan, in which the hero, for daring to spurn her amorous advances, is attacked by the goddess who has taken the form of a she-wolf.
But despite these associations with fierceness, the wolf was valued more for its affinities with humans than for its wildness. In reality, the wolf is a highly social, intelligent and friendly animal. Fondness for the wolf in Celtic tradition is shown in the legend that as a baby King Cormac of Ireland was taken by a she-wolf while his mother lay sleeping. Reared with the cubs, he always had a soft spot for wolves, and even when he was made king a pack of wolves accompanied him where ever he went. One of the gifts to Wales of the goddess Ceridwen in her guise as Henwen, the great white sow, was a wolf-cub, and in Geoffrey of Monmouth's "The Life of Merlin", we read of Merlin finding companionship in a dting wolf during his time of madness in the forest. As winter begins, depriving him of food, Merlin turns to his animal friend: "You, O wolf, dear companion, accustomed to roam with me through the secluded paths of the woods and meadows, now can scarcely get across the fieldsâ?¦ You lived in these woods before I did and age has whitened your hairs first." 

"Wolves howling in the night, where a fire burns so bright" ~wild wolf

The Wolf As Clan Totem
In Scottish tradition a number of clans have the wolf as their totem: the MacLennans and Mac Tyres (both meaning Son of the Wolf) and the MacMillans (meaning Son of the Wolf Servant); the personal name Fillan comes from the Gaelic Faolan, little wolf. In Wales, names such as Bledyn, Bleddri and Bleiddudd all derived from the word for wolf - Blaidd. In Ireland one whole tribe claims to be descent from a wolf, and according to tradition wolves were tamed and adopted as godfathers and godmothers. In the late Iron Age wolves were favorite subjects in iconography, and in the high mountain sanctuary of Le Donon in the Vosges there is a sculpture of a hunter-god and forest benefactor who wears a wolf skin cape. The Celts used the pelts of wolves as rugs and sat on them while dining, and there was a folk-belief that the hide offered protection from epilepsy. Wolf teeth were considered especially lucky - they were rubbed on babies' gums when teething, and worn as charms and ornaments.
A wolf is one of the animal allies of the horned figure on the great Celtic cauldron found at Gundestrup in Denmark. The others are a stag, a snake, a boar, two bulls, two lions and a dolphin.

The Werewolf
Despite all the positive associations with the wolf in tradition, it has also come to represent danger and evoke fear. In Anglo-Saxon times wolves were sometimes hung beside criminals, who were themselves termed wolves, and the Saxon word for gallows means "wolf-tree". Ever since the first century CE there have been tales of werewolves - humans who transform themselves into wolves. These stories probably arose from a variety of causes, and the many people who were burned alive as werewolves during the sixteenth century, mostly in France, probably suffers from porphyia, a genetic disease resulting in an aversion to daylight and the growth of facial hair, sufferers from rabies contacted through wolf-bites, and people showing symptoms of ergot poisoning, besides the truly criminal such as child and mass murders.
Certain tales of the predations of hungry wolves on livestock and from rabid wolves, made the wolf a hated and feared animal in post-Celtic Europe.
The lone and potentially murderous wolf became a symbol for all that was to be rejected and loathed - including man's own darkest urges. Despite the strongly negative associations of the wolf over the last two millennia, typified in the story of Little Red Riding Hood, the Big Bad Wold and other European folk-tales, sufficient connection with the true nature of the wolf and its ancestral totemic and positive associations existed for Baden-Powell, when founding the Boy Scout movement, to ask children to call themselves wolf cubs, and for the cub-leader, to be called Akela, the wolf-pack leader in Rudyard Kipling's "Jungle Book". Some naturalists believe that wolves use ravens to guide them to sources of food, and certainly raven will often follow wolves. There is a powerful connection between wolf and raven at the totemic level also. Just as Merlin found companionship in a wolf, so can we, if Faol becomes our ally, find closeness and spiritual companionship with this most faithful of animal guides. Above all, Faol will teach us, through our experience, to trust ourselves and not fear or reject those parts of us that we do not yet understand or know.

The wolf in Native American Tradition:

Wolf (Teacher)

Wolf is the pathfinder, the forerunner of new ideas who returns to the clan to teach and share medicine. Wolf takes one mate for life and is loyal like Dog. If you were to keep company with Wolves, you would find an enormous sense of family within the pack, as well as a strong individualistic urge. These qualities make Wolf very much like the human race. As humans, we also have an ability to be a part of society and yet still embody our individual dreams and ideas.
In the Great Star Nation, Wolf is represented by the Dog Star, Sirius, which legend tells us was the original home of our teachers in ancient times. Sirius was thought to be the home of the gods by the ancient Egyptians, and is still considered so by the Dogan tribe in Africa. It stands to reason that Native American people would formulate this same connection and adopt Wolf people as the clan of teachers. The senses of Wolf are very keen, and the moon is its power ally. The moon is the symbol for psychic energy, or the unconscious that holds the secrets of knowledge and wisdom. Baying at the moon may be an indication of Wolf's desire to connect with new ideas which are just below the surface of consciousness. Wolf medicine empowers the teacher within us all to come forth and aid the children of Earth in understanding the Great Mystery and life. 


The Big Bad Wolf is a term used to describe a fictional wolf who appears in several precautionary folkloric stories, including some of Aesop's Fables and Grimm's Fairy Tales.

okay forgive me if im treading on sensitive issues here but im curious. Among those here that feel a spiritual connection to Wolf,do you feel that it manifests strongly with your sexuality?Do you feel more dominant in bed? DO you feel more animalistic than others around you? DO you feel more in tune with your spiritual side when all facade of civilazation is dropped from your shoulders like an old garment?Do you feel like you can express yourself more truly when you let your human side fall away?


Erotic aspects

Pan is famous for his sexual powers, and is often depicted with a phallusDiogenes of Sinope, speaking in jest, related a myth of Pan learning masturbation from his father, Hermes, and teaching the habit to shepherds.[13]

Pan's greatest conquest was that of the moon goddess Selene. He accomplished this by wrapping himself in a sheepskin[14] to hide his hairy black goat form, and drew her down from the sky into the forest where he seduced her.


In 1933, the Egyptologist Margaret Murray published the book, The God of the Witches, in which she theorised that Pan was merely one form of a horned god who was worshipped across Europe by a witch-cult.[31] This theory influenced the Neopagan notion of the Horned God, as an archetype of male virility and sexuality. In Wicca, the archetype of the Horned God is highly important, as represented by such deities as the Celtic Cernunnos, Indian Pashupati and Greek Pan.

A modern account of several purported meetings with Pan is given by Robert Ogilvie Crombie in The Findhorn Garden (Harper & Row, 1975) and The Magic Of Findhorn (Harper & Row, 1975). Crombie claimed to have met Pan many times at various locations in Scotland, including Edinburgh, on the island of Iona and at the Findhorn Foundation.

In Roman mythology, fauns are place-spirits (genii) of untamed woodland. Romans connected their fauns with the Greek satyrs, wild and orgiastic drunken followers of Bacchus (Dionysus in Greek mythology). However, fauns and satyrs were originally quite different creatures. Both have horns and both resemble goats below the waist, humans above; but originally fauns had goat-like hooves, while satyrs had human feet. The Romans also had a god named Faunus and a goddess namedFauna, who, like the fauns, were goat-people.

In Roman mythologyBona Dea (literally "the good goddess") was the goddess of fertilityhealingvirginity, and women. She was the daughter of the god Faunus and was often referred to as Fauna.
Topics in Roman mythology
Important Gods:
Roman Kingdom
Religion in ancient Rome
Roman, Greek, and Etruscan mythologies compared
Other Rustic Gods:
Bona Dea was the perpetually virginal goddess, associated with virginity and fertility in women. She was also associated with healing, with the sick being tended to in her temple garden with medicinal herbs. She was regarded with great reverence by lower-class citizens, slaves and women who went to her seeking aid in sickness or for fertility.
She was worshipped in a temple on the Aventine Hill, but her secret rites were performed in the home of a prominent Roman magistrate. The rites were held on December 4, and only included women. Even paintings or drawings of men or male animals were forbidden, along with the words "wine" and "myrtle" because she had once been beaten by Faunus with a myrtle stick after she got drunk. The rites were conducted annually by the wife of the senior magistrate present in Rome and were assisted by theVestal Virgins. Very little is known about the ceremony, but the worship seems to have been agricultural in origin. The most famous event to do with this festival was its desecration by the man Publius Clodius in 62 BC by secretly attending the ceremony at the house of the pontifex maximus, Julius Caesar. During the ensuing trial, Clodius' alibi was destroyed by Cicero, which caused the animosity that would define their relationship from then on.
Bona Dea is usually depicted sitting on a throne, holding a cornucopia. The snake is her attribute, a symbol of healing, and consecrated snakes were kept in her temple at Rome, indicating her phallic nature. Her image frequently occurred on ancient Roman coins. Yerrrr MD.