Recently my faekin discord removed a user. I am not going to link to their callout post, nor reveal their name or contact details because I do not want to escalate the situation even further, nor do I want to boost the signal of their own post. Ultimately the booting was not because of the views they had, but of the demands they made of the person that eventually booted them, and if that person wants to comment I will allow them to reblog/respond to this post about it. Debate about these matters is definitely permitted on the server.
I will instead talk about the crux of the argument that took place, which is going to be mostly about Celtic cultural erasure, about spirit animal bonds, and in general about the ethics of a culture claiming a spiritual concept as exclusively their own. I will also disclose immediately that I am of over 80% celtic blood and very involved with my culture as well.
The subject of spirit animals and spirit animal bonds is a touchy subject for me because the Celtic practice and relationship with animal spirits has been practically erased from history to the point where we are not even allowed to talk about it for fear of backlash. I usually just let this go on Tumblr because I know I can’t fight the tide, but the fact is, brace your triggers please, Celtic Animism was and is a real thing.
The Celtic people recognized the spiritual nature, of nature and revered it. The druids represent the pinnacle of this practice and belief system, the study and practice of natural magic and communion with the spirits. Whether or not they could actually transform into their spirit animals is left up to the readers’ opinion, but the Druids were effectively the spiritual leaders of our overall belief system common to the Celtic people.
We worshipped the Old Gods. Not Zeus and the Greek/Roman gods, those were the gods of our oppressors. Not YHVH and the Elohimic, those were the divinities of those who came to erase our culture. To us, their gods were newbs. I speak of ones like Cernunnos, Annwn, Phliedas (I hope I spelt your name right), ones that were around before anyone put a pen down to write the book of Genesis. And our ways were a walk with nature, and with the Fae, the fae were as real to the Celts as the Sun and stars and elements, as nature itself, as any living thing or being around us.
I still walk with those gods. And I walk with them knowing who and what I am and who and what is around me and who and what is part of me.
And we had spirit animals, and we still do. This might be hard to hear in the world of Tumblr and the politics of appropriation and what is considered the acceptable narrative here, but every time I hear that narrative that spirit animals belong exclusively to another culture, it makes me want to claw my own eyes out.
When someone asserts that things that are part of my culture can no longer be accessed by me because it is theirs now, I feel that this is wrong. It is specifically offensive to Celts who have been working with and having bonds with animal spirits since before Christ was squeezed out.
Neither I, or any other Celtic person, nor anyone else that I can think of, is denying anyone of any other culture, their relationship with nature and with its spirits. But when the inverse becomes true ad I am told that I have “guides” and not “animal spirits” even though my experiences are directly contrary to this (I will only get specific if asked), then I feel that my own culture is being disrespected, and being erased due to another culture denying part of my own to claim it as their own.
Telling us Celts that we do not have spirit animals pisses on the graves and funeral pyres of every single one of us that did, it attempts to invalidate the practice of Druidry and Celtic Animism in its entirety, it pisses all over the beliefs of the Celtic people tracing back, not just past the time of Christ but before the time of the Elohimic era, and reaching towards the beginning of the Holocene era itself.
I did not do that to this person that is “calling me out”. They did this to me. I let it go unanswered on Tumblr because I cannot fight the tide of the acceptable narrative about it, but in my own space, I cannot let it stand. And every one of you who allow this narrative to continue have contributed your parts in erasing Druidry and Celtic culture. We have never asked anyone else to give up this part of their culture for our sake, but we should not be asked to either.
The person calling me out tried to start a conversation about who’s culture was more abused and violated, who’s culture was violated for longer, and other such arguments, and then complained about feeling triggered and unsafe when the debate was not going their way. But me, I didn’t WANT this. I didn’t want to have a culture war take place on my server. I merely wanted him to meet my culture half way on a cultural aspect we shared. We could have shared our experiences about it, and discovered what was different and the same between our experiences, and understood our cultures better. This is what I wanted.
I believe that this is all I can say about the matter, and I have wrote this mostly so that the accusations made will not stand alone and people can understand why I have been hurt by the things that were said to me and the total disregard for my own Celtic culture or the things we suffered through over the last 2000 years. I want to use this in conclusion to invite other faekin to my server and the link will follow, but I would indeed suggest that if you are one of those who believe that some cultures have the right to claim exclusive right to spiritual and magickal ideas to the exclusion of other cultures that share those ideas, that this server may not be right for you.