Cailleach: Death goddess & ancient ancestress


Imagine an ancient time, way past civilizations, past agriculture, past humans when the continents were in a different position – this is the time of the Cailleach. They were the earth shapers, a race of ancient, primal crones. The dropped boulders from their aprons to form the mountains and the land, and often hurled house sized rocks at other Cailleachs.

The Cailleach is the crone face of the triple goddess. While Brighid brings in the first light of spring at Imbolc as the energy of late summer begins to wane she faces west to the waters of the Atlantic. She returns to the great whirlpool of Corryvrecken (whirlpool of the plaid) and takes her mantle from her shoulders. As she washes out the rest of the season she rings her plaid dry and as she throws it out over the landscape of Scotland she invokes the first frost over the Scottish mountains.

With Samhain we begin our descent into darkness – some fear it some love it as the darkness is a place to hide. It’s a time to draw our inspirations and commit those things we wish to die – like the Cailleach who walks the land striking down any signs of life dead with her mighty staff.

Join me on the 23rd October at Mother Grove to create a Ancestor Holder with a guided meditation evoking the Cailleach, the death goddess and our most ancient ancestress.


Ancestor Holder Workshop. Cost $30, Location: Mother grove Goddess Temple, you can find directions here: http://www.mothergroveavl.org/directions.html

At this time of the year, more than any other we hold our ancestors dear. We call on them with collective memories, in prayers, with offerings.  As part of your ancestor veneration join me in an afternoon of creating an ancestor holder. We will use recycled fabrics and beads with special symbols, photos, jewelry, natural pieces – anything that is special or cherished.

These holders help in our focus of working with ancestors – they hold offerings, prayers, affirmations, celebrations, thanks, spells, wishes – however it works for you. We will begin the workshop with a guided meditation on the Cailleach Bheur (the blue hag of winter), and share a Bran Brack – a traditional Scottish divination cake!

The cost of the workshop is $30 – you will leave with a decorated fabric Ancestor Holder and a handout on Scottish Samhain. While all materials are provided please bring any personal item you’d like to use in the making or the decoration of your holder.

Please confirm if you’d like to attend this workshop by emailing me at judelally@gmail.com

Ages 15 and older.


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One thought on “Cailleach: Death goddess & ancient ancestress

  1. Pingback: Prepare, prepare as she is coming! The Cailleach awakens. « Celtic Soul Craft

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