Those of you who follow us on social media may have seen the memes we’ve been creating. We’ve added a page to the site to archive the ones we’ve done so far, and where we’ll be posting more in the future: Gaol Naofa Memes.

We’ve been working with a mixture of proverbs, prayers, triads, and quatrains from various Goidelic sources, doing our bit for language preservation and providing links for further info. For regular updates follow us at our Gaol Naofa Facebook page and Twitter account.

Gaol Naofa – New Moon
Original image: Dawn Perry

September 15, 2015

New video: Offerings in Gaelic Polytheism

Since our most recent video – A’ Ghealach Ùr (The New Moon) – which was released back in February, we’ve been working on a number of projects for the website and for future publication. We’ve had such great feedback from the videos we’ve been doing for the Gaol Naofa Youtube channel, though, that we decided it was high time for another one, so we’ve taken a short break from things to put together our newest video, titled Offerings in Gaelic Polytheism.

Offerings are an important part of our religious practice, and – in theory – they are also one of the most simple things a person can do to make the transition from someone who’s interested in Gaelic Polytheism, to someone who is a practising Gaelic Polytheist. Our latest video is intended to be a brief introduction to the subject, giving an idea of why we make offerings, and how we can go about making them:


If you want to find out more about the subject then one of our earliest publications here on the Gaol Naofa website, Offerings in Gaelic Polytheism, is well worth a read. The article has been expanded and revised over the years, and you can also read up on the historical and archaeological evidence over on the Tairis site along with a breakdown of different types of offerings that can be made. The video includes a prayer from one of our publications last year, our article on Children and Family in Gaelic Polytheism, which gives a simple overview of how to get started (whether you have kids or not!).

Wherever you are in the world, we believe it’s important that offerings should be made with respect to the local spirits. Offerings should not harm the environment or local wildlife, and we would urge careful consideration and contemplation about how your offering(s) may impact the local area. In recent times, this especially needs to be stressed when tying clooties or other things on trees. Although traditions evolve naturally over time, and the type of offerings that are being tied to trees are no exception, the increasingly common trend of tying non-biodegradable items (including, for some reason, things like iPhone cases and even nappies/diapers) tightly onto branches ends up stunting the tree’s growth or even killing them. The practice of leaving pennies or other coins worked into the tree trunks or natural cracks in stone is equally damaging. We believe that the Nature Spirits whom we honour will be better-disposed to you if you don’t harm their abodes and if the offering you make is truly something that honours, feeds, and beautifies the tree or sacred site instead of damaging it. Similarly, as much as we try to keep pets from getting at food offerings, there is always the risk of strays getting into them, and in many places wild animals commonly consume the offerings. Small amounts of human foods are usually not dangerous, but just to be on the safe side be aware of local wildlife, and familiarize yourself with what foods may be harmful if consumed by local animals.

As always, we hope you find the video useful! If there are any subjects you’d like us to cover in future, why not let us know on the Gaol Naofa Facebook page.

We leave you with this ‘Good Wish’, excerpted from the Carmina Gadelica #282, Dùrachd:

Gaol Naofa - Dùrachd


Photo credit: John McSporran, used under Creative Commons Licence.

August 24, 2015

New Article: History, Myth and Genocide: Real and Imagined; Or, The Pagan Problem with Patrick

Although it’s been heartening to see that (for the most part) there has been very little of the “black armband/All Snakes Day” crowd in recent years, there are still undoubtedly a lot of misconceptions that abound whenever the subject of St Patrick, and St Patrick’s Day, comes up. This was especially evident in the rather ignorant comments made by (thankfully a minority of) people about “finishing what Patrick started” following the theft and destruction of the Irish Manannán Mac Lir statue in February this year. As such, we feel that there’s still very much a need to dispel these misconceptions and present a more factual view of Patrick and just what, exactly, he might be held accountable for…

Although we’re a little past the usual March madness that reaches a fever pitch as St Patrick’s Day approaches, we feel that this latest article from Sionnach Gorm, History, Myth and Genocide: Real and Imagined; Or, The Pagan Problem with Patrick, addresses some really important stuff that goes beyond the usual topics that are explored when his name comes up.

This is the final component of Sionnach Gorm’s “St. Patrick’s Day Trilogy,” the first part of which can be read at his blog post, Leprechaun Vomit… or why I hate St. Patty’s, and the second part can be found here on the Gaol Naofa site, at Pagans, Polytheists, and St Patrick’s Day.

April 9, 2015

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Bennacht nime, nél-bennacht,
Bennacht tíre, torad-bennacht,
Bennacht mara, íasc-bennacht

Gaelic Polytheism

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2015 Calendar

23 January — Gealach Ùr
25 January — Burns Night
01 February — Lá Fhéile Bríde
21 February — Gealach Ùr
17 March — Lá Fhéile Pádraig
18 March — Sheelah's Day
23 March — Gealach Ùr
25 March — Là na Caillich
21 April — Gealach Ùr
01 May — Lá Bealtaine
21 May — Gealach Ùr
19 June — Gealach Ùr
21 June — Grianstad an tSamhraidh
05 July — Laa Tinvaal
19 July — Gealach Ùr
01 August — Lá Lúnasa
17 August — Gealach Ùr
16 September — Gealach Ùr
29 September — Là Fhèill Mìcheil
16 October — Gealach Ùr
31 October — Oíche Shamhna
14 November — Gealach Ùr
30 November — Latha Naomh Anndra
14 December — Gealach Ùr
22 December — Grianstad an Gheimhridh
26 December — Lá an Dreoilín
31 December — Hogmanay