September 2020

Turning the Wheel of the Year

2020-10-15T18:30:41+00:00

The turning of the wheel of the year is something which is always with us. At the summer solstice, I stood watching the sunset at the Browland Standing Stones in Garmouth, one of the villages on the Spey Estuary. The standing stones make a four-poster circle which is an unusual stone circle configuration for the [...]

Turning the Wheel of the Year2020-10-15T18:30:41+00:00

August 2020

Lughnasadh, Lunastal or Lammas: The Celtic Harvest Festival

2020-10-15T18:32:07+00:00

Lughnasadh is a festival where the first fruits of the harvest are celebrated on the 1st August. It has its origins in two separate festivals. Firstly, it is the Celtic festival of Lunastal, Lunasdal or Lughnasadh, making it one of the Gaelic quarter-day festivals along with Imbolc, Beltane and Samhain. Later the quarter-day festivals would [...]

Lughnasadh, Lunastal or Lammas: The Celtic Harvest Festival2020-10-15T18:32:07+00:00

June 2020

Calanais: The Sun, The Moon, The Goddess and The Stones

2020-10-15T18:05:34+00:00

Many people visit the Calanais Stones, on the Isle of Lewis at sunrise on the Summer solstice. They have heard a legend about the arrival of the ‘Shining One’ and go there in the hope of catching a glimpse of this being. But what is the story behind the myth and why are the Calanais [...]

Calanais: The Sun, The Moon, The Goddess and The Stones2020-10-15T18:05:34+00:00

The Feast of the Nine Maidens: A Christian Feast or a Pagan Memory

2020-10-15T18:15:24+00:00

The 18th of June is the Feast Day of the Nine Maidens in Scotland. But who were these women? Did they ever exist? Were they Christian reworkings of an ancient religion tied to Goddess worship? What is the connection between the Nine Maidens, the Cailleach and Brìde? What is their connection with Edinburgh and King [...]

The Feast of the Nine Maidens: A Christian Feast or a Pagan Memory2020-10-15T18:15:24+00:00

April 2020

Beltane Brìde

2020-10-15T20:38:13+00:00

In Scotland, Beltane and May Day are almost synonymous. May Day is a Spring holiday celebrated across Europe on May the First. It has ancient origins, some which extend back into the pagan rituals of the Romans. For the Gaelic-speaking people it aligns with Beltane (or Beltainn), celebrated each year on the 30th of April. [...]

Beltane Brìde2020-10-15T20:38:13+00:00

January 2020

Are the Scots a Nation of Pyromaniacs? Midwinter Fire Festivals in Scotland

2020-10-15T20:58:25+00:00

I am convinced that the Scots are a nation of pyromaniacs. I used to work in a laboratory connected to a famous Scottish food factory located on the banks of the River Spey. The guys that I worked with were obsessed with lighting fires and causing explosions. Alright, so when ‘Fire Starter’ was playing on [...]

Are the Scots a Nation of Pyromaniacs? Midwinter Fire Festivals in Scotland2020-10-15T20:58:25+00:00

October 2019

Halloween Origins: Samhain and the Cailleach

2020-10-16T18:24:31+00:00

The origins of Halloween date back to an ancient Celtic festival known as Samhain (pronounced sow-in) which celebrated the harvest and the arrival of the Cailleach. For the Celts who lived some 2,000 years ago, November 1st was their New Year. It was a time when the early farmers met together, bonfires were lit and [...]

Halloween Origins: Samhain and the Cailleach2020-10-16T18:24:31+00:00

December 2018

The Curse of Clava Cairns

2020-10-16T18:37:50+00:00

The Highlands of Scotland are shrouded in myths and stories of ancient guardians who protect the sacred sites and burial mounds of our dead ancestors. The area surrounding Inverness is particularly rich in legend, haunted history and tales of the supernatural.  The folklore surrounding the Loch Ness Monster is known throughout the world and there [...]

The Curse of Clava Cairns2020-10-16T18:37:50+00:00

March 2018

The Deil Stanes: Urquhart’s Recumbent Stone Circle

2020-10-16T20:37:41+00:00

Spooky Scotland has taken us on some amazing journeys and we have made some exciting discoveries along the way. There is a mystical quality about Stone Circles. The sun was shining, although there is always a cold bite in the air in February in Scotland. We were standing in a field, a great mound of [...]

The Deil Stanes: Urquhart’s Recumbent Stone Circle2020-10-16T20:37:41+00:00
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