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Author Topic: Learning a Celtic Language  (Read 13360 times)

Celtag

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Learning a Celtic Language
« on: January 11, 2012, 08:38:18 pm »
Who here is learning or speak a Celtic language? Do you think as a Celtic Pagan you should at least learn to speak some of a Celtic Language. I am in the process of learning Welsh, I find the language very beautiful, but also challenging.
« Last Edit: January 11, 2012, 08:38:37 pm by Celtag »
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Asch

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Re: Learning a Celtic Language
« Reply #1 on: January 11, 2012, 08:52:14 pm »
Quote from: Celtag;38494
Who here is learning or speak a Celtic language? Do you think as a Celtic Pagan you should at least learn to speak some of a Celtic Language. I am in the process of learning Welsh, I find the language very beautiful, but also challenging.

 
Theoretically I'm working on modern Irish Gaelic via Rosetta stone. In reality I haven't sat down w/the material in months. Between finishing my degree, swapping jobs, and health issues I haven't had the brain power or time.

It is certainly challenging, comprehending and internalizing the spelling alone is difficult with my anglophone brain!

Fagan_the_Pagan

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Re: Learning a Celtic Language
« Reply #2 on: January 12, 2012, 02:34:20 am »
Quote from: Asch;38495
Theoretically I'm working on modern Irish Gaelic via Rosetta stone. In reality I haven't sat down w/the material in months. Between finishing my degree, swapping jobs, and health issues I haven't had the brain power or time.

It is certainly challenging, comprehending and internalizing the spelling alone is difficult with my anglophone brain!

 
I am somewhat similar, also in Irish Gaelic, though I make an effort to use phrases at least now and then, and at least try to learn new words and phrases and put to memory what they mean.
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Micheál

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Re: Learning a Celtic Language
« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2012, 09:57:47 am »
Quote from: Celtag;38494
Who here is learning or speak a Celtic language? Do you think as a Celtic Pagan you should at least learn to speak some of a Celtic Language. I am in the process of learning Welsh, I find the language very beautiful, but also challenging.
I got my GCSE in Modern Irish, and at least speak it on a weekly basis. I often go to Cumman Cluain Ard on Monday nights in West Belfast where English isn't allowed.

I guess it depends on what sort of "pagan" you are. Obviously Celtic Primitive&Old Irish was spoken by the ancients, but Irish is a surviving Celtic language that is part of contemporary Gaelic cultures. I think it's important because the language still captures the ancients' mindset, and is a direct link to the culture and Gods one is looking to affiliate with. If anything else it's an identity.
« Last Edit: January 13, 2012, 09:58:59 am by Micheál »

Vale

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Re: Learning a Celtic Language
« Reply #4 on: January 14, 2012, 03:05:12 pm »
Quote from: Celtag;38494
Who here is learning or speak a Celtic language? Do you think as a Celtic Pagan you should at least learn to speak some of a Celtic Language. I am in the process of learning Welsh, I find the language very beautiful, but also challenging.


Pob lwc Celtag. Daliwch ati!

Celtag

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Re: Learning a Celtic Language
« Reply #5 on: January 14, 2012, 03:34:45 pm »
Quote from: Vale;38725
Pob lwc Celtag. Daliwch ati!
Diolch, a byddaf yn ceisio!
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Aster Breo

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Re: Learning a Celtic Language
« Reply #6 on: January 14, 2012, 10:44:52 pm »
Quote from: Micheál;38618

I guess it depends on what sort of "pagan" you are. Obviously Celtic Primitive&Old Irish was spoken by the ancients, but Irish is a surviving Celtic language that is part of contemporary Gaelic cultures. I think it's important because the language still captures the ancients' mindset, and is a direct link to the culture and Gods one is looking to affiliate with. If anything else it's an identity.

 
Can you please elaborate on what you mean by "it depends on what sort of 'pagan' you are"?
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Micheál

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Re: Learning a Celtic Language
« Reply #7 on: January 15, 2012, 06:13:42 am »
Quote from: Aster Breo;38775
Can you please elaborate on what you mean by "it depends on what sort of 'pagan' you are"?

No worries at all. While some pagans do place emphasis on, or recreating the culture the Gods belong to, I've seen quite a few that don't. For example here, many Celtic neopagans and reconstructionists may place emphasis on Celtic language and culture, but I've also met those that believe that they can still place emphasis on culture without having to learn the language as long as they understand the significance and express it in words of their native language

Saying this, I have seen some self defeating purposes. People that claim they place emphasis on Irish culture, but strongly oppose burning Yule logs(even though the Bloc na Nollaig has been adopted into Gaelic culture) because it's "Germanic," but it's ok for them to continue to address Gaelic Gods in the Germanic English language?

Celtic Raven

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Re: Learning a Celtic Language
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2012, 03:49:18 pm »
Quote from: Celtag;38494
Who here is learning or speak a Celtic language? Do you think as a Celtic Pagan you should at least learn to speak some of a Celtic Language. I am in the process of learning Welsh, I find the language very beautiful, but also challenging.


I'm in the process of learning Scottish Gaelic through the Ùlpan method, although I also have distance learning material for it too.  Classes start back tomorrow :)

It's quite challenging getting my head round the construction of the language, there are no words for yes and no, and the construction of sentences are unusual, but I'm beginning to recognise patterns :eek:
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Shadow

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Re: Learning a Celtic Language
« Reply #9 on: January 15, 2012, 03:52:52 pm »
Quote from: Celtic Raven;38842
I'm in the process of learning Scottish Gaelic through the Ùlpan method, although I also have distance learning material for it too.  Classes start back tomorrow :)

It's quite challenging getting my head round the construction of the language, there are no words for yes and no, and the construction of sentences are unusual, but I'm beginning to recognise patterns :eek:


I would love to learn Scottish Gaelic. My Dads uncle was fluent in it but unfortunately I never had the chance to meet him. I have a quote that I wanted to translate into Scottish Gaelic and then get it tattooed somewhere so I may look in to it in the future.

Nomad of Nowhere

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Re: Learning a Celtic Language
« Reply #10 on: January 17, 2012, 12:35:25 am »
Quote from: Celtag;38494
Who here is learning or speak a Celtic language? Do you think as a Celtic Pagan you should at least learn to speak some of a Celtic Language. I am in the process of learning Welsh, I find the language very beautiful, but also challenging.

 
I think it's always a good idea to try and choose a language that fits the pre-Christian culture you're drawing from. An ADF friend of mine always used Gaelic for this purpose, and I usually try Russian for Slavic practices. In my own experience, I haven't seen that rites conducted in English don't work every bit as well, but I feel it shows a certain respect.

dragonfaerie

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Re: Learning a Celtic Language
« Reply #11 on: January 22, 2012, 08:52:49 pm »
Quote from: Celtag;38494
Who here is learning or speak a Celtic language? Do you think as a Celtic Pagan you should at least learn to speak some of a Celtic Language. I am in the process of learning Welsh, I find the language very beautiful, but also challenging.

 
I've been working on learning Irish, though that's been on hold for a good year now because the only teacher in the area has retired.

I don't think you have to learn a celtic language to work with any of the Celtic Gods or Celtic pantheons. I think they appreciate it when you do, and I think it can add a nice touch to ritual when you understand what you're saying, but I don't think it's necessary. Learning it because you feel you have to, because you feel it's an obligation, I think that sucks all the joy and potential for deeper communication with the divine right out of it.

Karen

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Re: Learning a Celtic Language
« Reply #12 on: January 22, 2012, 11:29:31 pm »
Quote from: Micheál;38798
No worries at all. While some pagans do place emphasis on, or recreating the culture the Gods belong to, I've seen quite a few that don't. For example here, many Celtic neopagans and reconstructionists may place emphasis on Celtic language and culture, but I've also met those that believe that they can still place emphasis on culture without having to learn the language as long as they understand the significance and express it in words of their native language

 
(Sorry to be coming back to this after so much time.  I've been struggling with a killer headache all week.  But I wanted to jump off of this post.)

I think learning a Celtic language would be a wonderful thing, and might indeed provide additional perspective on the culture, history, mythology, and spirituality.  I imagine that praying to the Celtic gods in a Celtic language would be very fulfilling.

However, I think it's presumptuous to assume that everyone who worships a Celtic deity even has the capacity to learn a Celtic language, regardless of whether s/he wants to or not.

The claim that you have to learn a Celtic language to be a "real" Celtic polytheist (which I don't think is what you're saying, Micheál, but I *have* seen that claim from others) is incredibly elitist. In a way, it reminds me of the argument I've read that the only legitimate marriages are the ones that can produce (or have produced) offspring.  (It's an anti-gay-marriage argument I've seen. A ridiculous argument, IMO, but an argument, nonetheless.)

There are many reasons why someone might NOT learn a Celtic language.  Some people simply do not pick up languages easily.  Some people don't have the room in the budget or time in the schedule necessary for learning a language, whether that's Rosetta Stone or a class or whatever.  Some people might have learning disabilities or medical issues that prevent learning another language.  Some people might not feel it's an important aspect of their specific path.

Like Karen said, learning a Celtic language is not necessarily a requirement for honoring the Celtic gods.  IMO, anyway.  At least, I'm pretty sure it's not a requirement for honoring Brighid.  :)

~ Aster
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Celtag

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Re: Learning a Celtic Language
« Reply #13 on: January 23, 2012, 12:37:07 am »
Quote from: Aster Breo;39944
(Sorry to be coming back to this after so much time.  I've been struggling with a killer headache all week.  But I wanted to jump off of this post.)

I think learning a Celtic language would be a wonderful thing, and might indeed provide additional perspective on the culture, history, mythology, and spirituality.  I imagine that praying to the Celtic gods in a Celtic language would be very fulfilling.

However, I think it's presumptuous to assume that everyone who worships a Celtic deity even has the capacity to learn a Celtic language, regardless of whether s/he wants to or not.

The claim that you have to learn a Celtic language to be a "real" Celtic polytheist (which I don't think is what you're saying, Micheál, but I *have* seen that claim from others) is incredibly elitist. In a way, it reminds me of the argument I've read that the only legitimate marriages are the ones that can produce (or have produced) offspring.  (It's an anti-gay-marriage argument I've seen. A ridiculous argument, IMO, but an argument, nonetheless.)

There are many reasons why someone might NOT learn a Celtic language.  Some people simply do not pick up languages easily.  Some people don't have the room in the budget or time in the schedule necessary for learning a language, whether that's Rosetta Stone or a class or whatever.  Some people might have learning disabilities or medical issues that prevent learning another language.  Some people might not feel it's an important aspect of their specific path.

Like Karen said, learning a Celtic language is not necessarily a requirement for honoring the Celtic gods.  IMO, anyway.  At least, I'm pretty sure it's not a requirement for honoring Brighid.  :)

~ Aster
I think it's really up to the individual what they decide to do and how much emphasis they put on speaking in a Celtic tongue. For me I love the fact that I can learn a Celtic language and be able to come closer to that way of life. But I really believe that as a Celtic Pagan or and Eclectic one, it's all up to you what you feel is right and necessary.
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cigfran

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Re: Learning a Celtic Language
« Reply #14 on: January 23, 2012, 07:16:35 am »
Quote from: Celtag;39949
I think it's really up to the individual what they decide to do and how much emphasis they put on speaking in a Celtic tongue. For me I love the fact that I can learn a Celtic language and be able to come closer to that way of life. But I really believe that as a Celtic Pagan or and Eclectic one, it's all up to you what you feel is right and necessary.

 
What resources are you using to learn Welsh? I need to learn it myself and, well... as you know, the difficulties are pretty daunting.

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