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Author Topic: Group Project: Designing an Ogam Deck  (Read 6056 times)

Aster Breo

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Re: Group Project: Designing an Ogam Deck
« Reply #15 on: August 13, 2011, 08:26:58 am »
Quote from: Finn;12495

I have a couple more books on ogam that offer a wide-range of different interpretations, some more thought-provoking, and some far-fetched than others.

 
I was just looking through the various ogam books on Amazon and discovered a brand new one: The Poet's Ogam: A Living Magical Tradition, by John-Paul Patton.

Unfortunately, it's still new and, therefore, still pricey.  

But it looks like it could be very interesting.

~ Aster
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Group Project: Designing an Ogam Deck
« Reply #16 on: August 14, 2011, 11:47:08 am »
Quote from: Aster Breo;12583
I was just looking through the various ogam books on Amazon and discovered a brand new one: The Poet's Ogam: A Living Magical Tradition, by John-Paul Patton.

Unfortunately, it's still new and, therefore, still pricey.  

But it looks like it could be very interesting.

~ Aster

 
As recommended by Micheál in this thread - wherein Patton turns up to thank him for the rec.

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Finn

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Re: Group Project: Designing an Ogam Deck
« Reply #17 on: September 02, 2011, 10:15:02 pm »
Quote from: Finn;12495


 
It's September, guys!


... Okay, so it's September 2nd. That means that if you're interested in being part of this project, I have your PM. Last call, everybody! :)

This weekend, I'll make a little list of what everyone is interested in doing and get it up, in accordance with my self-imposed deadline.
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Finn

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Re: Group Project: Designing an Ogam Deck
« Reply #18 on: September 04, 2011, 06:47:39 pm »
Quote from: Finn;17536

This weekend, I'll make a little list of what everyone is interested in doing and get it up, in accordance with my self-imposed deadline.

 

Ta da! Here we are!

Finn -- lists, whatever else, interpretations
Rocquelaire -- layout, images, interpretations
Aster Breo -- lists, interpretations
Juni -- interpretations

All four of us expressed interest in making ogam lists and writing up our final interpretations, and since we're a small group, I think we can collaborate very easily together on those.

Juni, would you like to pitch in on the look and layout of the deck? Perhaps looking for images as rocquelaire offered to do?

On that note, we do need to decide at some point how we'd ultimately like to execute the deck: shall it be a Photoshop venture, using photos and images from various sources and collaging it together? Or will it be drawn or otherwise executed by hand/scanned into the computer? We don't have to decide right now, just something to think about, particularly with regards to the question of what software our layout and graphics people have access to, and if we have a scanner available. Or if we want to commission someone (er, charity commission -- either someone does it for free or for very cheapz) to do the artwork.


So our next deadline is to:

Quote
read our Google Docs and the Ogam Tract by September 15th


How's that for everyone?

For now, let's keep our initial discussion here in this thread, so that if anyone wants to join us at a later time, they won't be too confused by too many threads. Once we've all read the materials, we'll likely move our discussion along with our working documents to Google Docs, where we can all post lists and work on them together in that space.

Sound good?
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Aster Breo

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Re: Group Project: Designing an Ogam Deck
« Reply #19 on: September 04, 2011, 07:31:11 pm »
Quote from: Finn;17871

Sound good?

 
Works for me. :)

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Finn

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Re: Group Project: Designing an Ogam Deck
« Reply #20 on: September 17, 2011, 04:11:18 pm »
Okay everyone! It's the... 17th. Er. I gave you some extra time because I'm just that awesome and accommodating. :whis:


By now, we should all have read our two ogam lists, culled from ERL's Ogam and from Alexei Kondratiev's workshop. We should also have read the original Ogham Tract.

Are there any questions at this point? I tend to forget that other people may not have as solid a grounding in what ogam actually is and what information we have about it as some of us may already have. And I think it's important to know what lists exist, and what possibilities there are for us to develop.

Because the thing that makes this deck different than others is that we're going (ideally) incorporate a lot of information on this deck, not just trees, or word ogams, or whatever. We're going to have a landscape of associations and symbols.

So, we're going to have to collect and come up with a lot of symbols.

Which leads us to some more questions from me to you:

How do you feel about ogam's traditional usage as a mnemonic device to remember groups of words beginning with the same letter as the fid? What I mean is, we're going to have to rack our brains if we stick to this.

Eg: `ban' is to 'beith' (the color white) as 'necht' (clear) is to 'nin'.

There are exceptions to this rule, of course, particularly with the word ogams, which tend to be kennings that relate to a wide set of symbols that each fid is associated with.

Eg: 'Feocus foltchain' (faded trunk and fair hair) is for birch (beith) as 'Cosdad sida', (checking of peace) is for ash (nin).

How do you feel about using associations that are not limited to words beginning with the same letter as each fid? I think it would inform our deck a little better, and certainly be easier to collect symbols related to each fid that were not limited to only words beginning with the same letter!
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Aster Breo

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Re: Group Project: Designing an Ogam Deck
« Reply #21 on: September 18, 2011, 06:33:19 pm »
Quote from: Finn;20653

How do you feel about using associations that are not limited to words beginning with the same letter as each fid? I think it would inform our deck a little better, and certainly be easier to collect symbols related to each fid that were not limited to only words beginning with the same letter!

 
Hmmm.  I think my answer might depend on whether we're "doing" this deck in Irish or in English.

What I mean is:  I don't speak Irish, so using ogam as a mnemonic devise to remember Irish words isn't particularly useful to me.  

The way I've been thinking about it is to first decide on a set of categories that we want to represent on the cards.  F'ex, we might want a tree, a flower, and an animal on each card.  Then we could take the interpretation of the ogam (e.g., "purification" for beith) and come up with items in our categories that all have something to do with purification.  (I think this is sort of what Erynn did in the book.)

So, the "beith" card would have a picture of a birch -- NOT because "birch" stars with a "B", but because birch trees have associations with purification.  Similarly, our flower might be a lily or a lotus because those flowers are used as symbols of purification or purity, and our animal might be a vulture because it's considered a symbol of purification.

To me, that would be a more useful card *for divination*.

The problem is, of course, that we'd have to come up with all those trees, flowers, animals, etc.  And the second problem is that symbolism is subjective.  In one culture, a vulture might symbolize purification, while it symbolizes death in another culture.  We'd probably want to go with Irish, or at least Celtic, culture, since ogam is an Irish creation -- which would make it even more difficult to come up with categories that work.

Another idea would be to "translate" the ogam letter into an English letter, and use items in each category that start with that letter in English.  F'ex, if "beith" translates to "B", we'd use a birch tree, a bromeliad flower, and a beaver -- because they all start with B in English.

TBH, this is not going to be a easy project no matter which way we do it.  :p

I'd love to hear how others are thinking about this.

~ Aster
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Finn

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Re: Group Project: Designing an Ogam Deck
« Reply #22 on: September 25, 2011, 04:31:34 pm »
Quote from: Aster Breo;20865
\The way I've been thinking about it is to first decide on a set of categories that we want to represent on the cards.  F'ex, we might want a tree, a flower, and an animal on each card.  Then we could take the interpretation of the ogam (e.g., "purification" for beith) and come up with items in our categories that all have something to do with purification.  (I think this is sort of what Erynn did in the book.)

So, the "beith" card would have a picture of a birch -- NOT because "birch" stars with a "B", but because birch trees have associations with purification.  Similarly, our flower might be a lily or a lotus because those flowers are used as symbols of purification or purity, and our animal might be a vulture because it's considered a symbol of purification.


This was the way I was thinking about it too, but I wanted to make sure everyone was on the same page. This seems far more practical to me.

Quote

The problem is, of course, that we'd have to come up with all those trees, flowers, animals, etc.  And the second problem is that symbolism is subjective.  In one culture, a vulture might symbolize purification, while it symbolizes death in another culture.  We'd probably want to go with Irish, or at least Celtic, culture, since ogam is an Irish creation -- which would make it even more difficult to come up with categories that work.


*nod*  And you're right: it's not going to be easy, no matter what we decide on. And I think we're all going to have to make some compromises in order to decide on symbols. We may also have to rely on the majority rule, and vote on particularly difficult symbols.

And I think I agree with you: we should have a... baseline for our symbology. I think having it be a pan-Celtic cultural symbol set would be the most appropriate. This means, for instance, that the pig is an Otherworldly animal, a sign of wealth and importance, and not a symbol for, say, gluttony (like it would be in a Buddhist mindset).


So, how does everyone feel about starting to brainstorm some "categories" of symbols to include on each card? Let's get some of the obvious ones out there, the ones that already have ogam lists:

*Trees
*Birds
*Mammals
*Arts/Crafts

I'll add:

*Landscapes (i.e. desert, forest, mountain...)
*Flowers
*Stones (including precious stones/gemstones)
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Juni

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Re: Group Project: Designing an Ogam Deck
« Reply #23 on: September 25, 2011, 05:05:05 pm »
Quote from: Finn;22188
So, how does everyone feel about starting to brainstorm some "categories" of symbols to include on each card? Let's get some of the obvious ones out there, the ones that already have ogam lists:

*Trees
*Birds
*Mammals
*Arts/Crafts

I'll add:

*Landscapes (i.e. desert, forest, mountain...)
*Flowers
*Stones (including precious stones/gemstones)

 
Hm..

*Fish/Shellfish?
*Constellations (this one might be tricky)
*Historical figures (I'm thinking specifically Celtic here, not worldwide)
*Mythological figures (ditto)

That's all that comes to mind at the moment.
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Finn

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Re: Group Project: Designing an Ogam Deck
« Reply #24 on: September 25, 2011, 05:28:25 pm »
Quote from: Juni;22194
Hm..

*Fish/Shellfish?
*Constellations (this one might be tricky)
*Historical figures (I'm thinking specifically Celtic here, not worldwide)
*Mythological figures (ditto)

That's all that comes to mind at the moment.


Those are great ideas! Totally didn't even think about constellations, and my not-so-inner astronomy/astrology nerd would be very happy if we did include those.

I know ERL included astrological bodies (planets and asteroids) in her personal ogam associations. What did you think about them?
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Juni

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Re: Group Project: Designing an Ogam Deck
« Reply #25 on: September 25, 2011, 05:47:44 pm »
Quote from: Finn;22197
I know ERL included astrological bodies (planets and asteroids) in her personal ogam associations. What did you think about them?

 
Honestly I don't think I even looked at them; if we want to include them, though, it's good with me. :)
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Finn

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Re: Group Project: Designing an Ogam Deck
« Reply #26 on: September 28, 2011, 12:04:41 pm »
Quote from: Finn;22188
Let's get some of the obvious ones out there, the ones that already have ogam lists:

*Trees
*Birds
*Mammals
*Arts/Crafts


Oops. Forgot to add:

*Colors
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Aster Breo

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Re: Group Project: Designing an Ogam Deck
« Reply #27 on: September 29, 2011, 01:12:57 am »
Quote from: Finn;22779
Oops. Forgot to add:

*Colors

 
Erynn also includes musical notes in the associations in her book.  I'm not advocating using them; just putting that out there to be thorough.

About constellations:  Do we know anything about how the ancient Celts viewed the stars or about whatever constellations they might have used?
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Re: Group Project: Designing an Ogam Deck
« Reply #28 on: September 29, 2011, 09:26:56 am »
Quote from: Aster Breo;22970
About constellations:  Do we know anything about how the ancient Celts viewed the stars or about whatever constellations they might have used?

 
Hmm. No, I don't think we do.

Also adding Food/Drink to the list!
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Finn

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Re: Group Project: Designing an Ogam Deck
« Reply #29 on: September 29, 2011, 12:25:39 pm »
Quote from: Aster Breo;22970
About constellations:  Do we know anything about how the ancient Celts viewed the stars or about whatever constellations they might have used?

 
So, here's what I have about Celtic astrology:

An article by Peter Berresford Ellis about the fabrication of Graves'-derived 'tree zodiac', in which he mentions that

Quote
Our earliest surviving Irish zodiacal chart dates to the 8th Century AD. Our earliest surviving texts on astrology and astronomy in Irish and Hiberno-Latin date back to the 7th Century. Gaulish Celts, writing in Latin as a lingua franca, were writing about astrology far earlier. Repositories, such as Trinity College, Dublin, are replete with astrological charts, texts and materials, and this is just the tip of a large linguistic iceberg for many such texts also survive throughout repositories in Europe where the Irish from the 7th Century established monastic sites and churches and carried their vast literary endeavours with them.


I wish there were an easy accessible synthesis of the work being done on Celtic astrology, but I haven't found it yet.


And then I have this article by Searles O'Dubhain who... pretty much does his own thing (which I find useful, but mostly because it is fun for me to build similar tables of associations and dink around with calendars...), but provides a handy list of constellation names in Irish.
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