Spheres Of Light


(Information provided by Amethyst)

(Irish, Scottish) The daughter of Ard-Greimne of Lethra.  Scáthach (“shadow” – pronounced “skya”), also known as Scáthach Buanand (“victorious shadow”) is the most famous of female Warriors in Celtic mythology.  Also known as Scota, Scatha, Scath, Scathach nUanaind.  Her name means "Shadow"; "Shade"; "The Shadowy One"; "She Who Strikes Fear".  She lived on the Isle of Shadow in the Hebrides where she had a school to which the greatest of Ireland's warriors came to be trained.  She was famous for invincible battle methods such as the magickal leap and the battle yell, a technique also employed effectively by the Native Americans (the war whoop), and by the Confederate soldiers (the rebel yell) during the American Civil War.  She was Amazonian in size and seemingly ageless.  She was also a powerful mgician, a rival of her sister Aife.

Cuchulain, possibly Ireland's greatest warrior hero, was one of her students, as were many other Red Branch warriors.  Like the Lady of the Lake in the Arthurian sagas, she bestowed on her most deserving pupil a magickal sword.  Scathach did not train women because of a Celtic belief which stated that only women could teach men effective battle skills, and only men could teach them to women.

She was the Underworld Goddess of the Land of Scath; Dark Goddess; goddess in the Destroyer aspect.  Patroness of black-smiths, healing, magic, prophecy, martial arts.

Some texts describe her as living in Alpi, which most commentators have understood as implying Alba [Scotland].  Other texts link her specifically with the Hebridean Isle of Skye, which is then called Dún Scáthaig(e)/Scáith for her.

In magic and ritual, Scathach can be called on for weaving potent magick, to learn fighting skills, or offer protection or invite her to aid you when you are the teacher.

Correspondences:  Shields, swords, garnet.

Scathach, Gaelic Goddess of the Dead

Scathach (skah-thahgh), the warrior-woman risen to divinity, is the Gaelic goddess of the dead, those slain in battle and the passage of the dead to Tir Nan Og.  Once mortal, she was touched by the Tuatha de Dannan in a way usually only seen in the Sidhe.  In her duties, she is similar to the Valkyrie of the Norse.  She searches the battlefields for the souls of the slain, and guides them along the Imrama na Anam, or Death Journey (lit. "Journey of the Soul"), to Tir Nan Og, the Land of Eternal Youth and Beauty.

Scathach is said to be the daughter of the king of Scythia.  Aoife, another fierce warrior queen, is reputed to be her sister, while Uathach, her daughter, is a fellow teacher at her school.  She also has two sons named Cet and Cuar from an unnamed man and trains them within a secret yew tree.  Another source tells that she is mother to three maidens named Lasair, Inghean Bhuidhe and Latiaran, the father being a man named Douglas.

However, although the warrior dead get preferential treatment, Scathach does guide those who did not die in battle when they get lost on the Imrama.  The reason so many vision-seekers get lost on the Imrama is that Scathach does not guide the living.  It is also the duty of Scathach to drop those who acted poorly in life on one of the mystical islands of the other world, where they pay their debts and learn their folly.  Not many living mortals ever make it to Tir Nan Og successfully (Olsin being the most famous exception).

Scathach's Prayer

I Call to you,
My brothers and sisters.
I Call to you,
Fellow sons and daughters.
I Call to you,
All ye children of the Turner Of The Wheel.
I Call to you,
As a fellow child,
To do battle by my side,
To aid me in the conquest of my foes.

Draw close to me now,
Brothers and Sisters of Death Herself.
Let my blade be as your blade,
My blood be as your blood,
My heart be as your heart,
My mind be as your mind,
Together we shall defeat all our foes,
Working as one, we shall vanquish all enemies.
United in heart, mind, body and soul,
All our foes will be destroyed before us.

Should silence, rather than anger, be needed,
We must blend with the shadows.
We must become as the shadows.
We shall move like Scathach Herself,
Silent, swift, sure and unerring.
From the shadows we will strike
With the speed of Death.
None shall expect us when we come for them,
None shall live when we find them.
For we are the Children of Death Herself.

Should anger be the greater part, however,
We shall strike with all the fury in our hearts.
Dougals' forging, Eiluneds' casting, Gwydions' treachery;
These have never been forgiven or forgotten by us.
Should they or any other attempt to stop us,
They shall meet the fury of our blades.
Empowered by Scathachs' great speed,
The speed of Death,
We shall destroy all who attempt to defeat us.
None shall survive our wrath.

It is only in the greatest of times,
The harshest and toughest of times,
That we shall Call upon the Wrath.
The Wrath of Scathach Herself.
All who see this great Wrath will cower before Her.
No smith, sorcerer or ruler shall stop us;
They will die all the swifter before Her.
The Dragon will come to us,
To give us his power and aid us in battle.
None shall stop the blood of our foes from feeding the land.

Information gathered by Amethyst from:

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Spheres Of Light (SOL) is an Australian Pagan group (eg. Witches, Wiccans, Heathens, Shamans, Magicians, Occultists etc) meeting in the Sutherland Shire,
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