My Scottish ancestors were doing just fine, until the Christians came along with fire and sword.
Caim – (n.) Sanctuary. An invisible circle of protection drawn around the body with the hand, to remind one of being safe and loved even in the darkest times. The index finger of the right hand was to be extended and pointed at the ground to do this. It was to be drawn clockwise, as God has made the sun and moon rise and set.
The Irish and my Scottish Celtic ancestors lived a naturalistic existence, close to the earth, the plants and the wildlife. Then along came the Christians. They would have none of this mystical hand-waving. They wanted their own brand of mystical hand-waving.
First, the spelling and pronunciation was slurred to ‘Cain.’ In their mythology, Cain was the first murderer, and an evil person, a servant of Satan. No-one was allowed to be saved or protected by such an evil spirit. Union rules said that all such work went to Jesus. The word ‘Caim’ still exists in the Scottish language, but it now describes a Christian prayer for protection.
The Celts were already well aware of the motions of the sun and the moon, but the Christian ‘God’ even creeps into the historical definition, by making them do so. I noted that the definition is Northern-centric. In the Northern hemisphere, the apparent movements of the sun and moon are clockwise, from left to right.
When this word was born, the Christians had not yet invaded the Southern Hemisphere, where the counter-clockwise, widdershins, motion of the Heavenly bodies was obvious, and correct. I wonder what the Christians would think of that?? (Oops, I used the words ‘think’ and ‘Christian’ in the same sentence.) 😯
Click here http://branawen.blogspot.ca/2011/09/celtic-symbolism-casting-ring-of.html caim, if you’d like to have a look at the research for this.
I’ll have a little bit of lighter humor in a week. Hope to see you there.