During the first year of this blog, the posts focused primarily on the Ogham in its “tree” form. These posts had evolved into three distinct parts. The first was “the Roots” section which spoke to the divination users and students of the Ogham. The second portion was “the Trunk” section which shared the harvest of information available on that tree from Celtic Myth and Folklore. The third part was “the Foliage” section which shared spell uses for the tree or plant discussed that week.
What exactly is the Celtic Tree Ogham?
Nowadays, the Ogham is often seen as a “tree alphabet,” but there’s little evidence that the listings of these trees within the Ogham Tract was anything more than a mnemonic device being used at the time. The Ogham, however, is often used by many as a way to reconnect with the ancestor spirits of the past, or with nature itself.
My intention, in writing the blog, was to reflect more deeply on the associations for each of these letters in a way that deepened my own relationship with the Ogham and in a way which promoted a practice of self-discipline.
In this way I would research, reflect, and meditate upon each letter for a week before publishing what I had discovered or written. A previous knowledge of the Ogham was not necessary for the reader, though some would have chosen to skip ahead to the Myth and Folklore section.
Sharing these findings with those who were also interested was my way of giving back.
Within the Celtic Tree Ogham there are 25 main letters, or fews. My first post was at the beginning of May 2011, the “light half” of the year, and this first cycle was concluded by the end of October 2011 for the beginning of the “dark half” of the year (or more accurately the cold half). I began the second cycle at that time and finished it in May of 2012. Each cycle (part I & II) focuses on several respected authors who study the Ogham. As the authors are different between part I & II, sometimes the interpretations will differ. A Ogham student may wish to read both part I and part II for each tree.
When writing about the Ogham, I tried to reference Celtic mythology almost exclusively. The Ogham was a Celtic alphabet, it seemed strange to me that many wrote about the Ogham but referenced other cultures when they discussed the trees. Other mythologies are easier to find, research, and reference, but that doesn’t mean that we should ignore what reflections are available to us through the traditional sources. The context of the Ogham is one that can only be found within the culture of the Celts. Their gods were different from other cultures’ gods, their foods were different, their language was different and their ways of achieving enlightenment were different. It is only through a Celtic context that we can ever hope to understand the possible meanings of the Ogham in a spiritual context.
I’m not a Ogham expert, but an enthusiast. I am not a Reconstructionist, necessarily, but believe that our ancestors knew many things that we have long since forgotten. They lived in a more symbiotic relationship with nature and discarnate beings, which we can in turn learn from through study.
The Living Library Ogham Index (first cycle only – there’s no index for the second cycle)