Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Aenghus: The Celtic God of Love

Aenghus was considered the god of love, youth, poetic inspiration and health. He was also known as Aenghus mac Og, " Son of Youth" in the Irish tongue. Mabon ap Modron, " Youth, Son of the Mother" in the Welsh tongue. Other names that he was known as was O'engus ( old Irish ), A'engus ( Middle Irish ) and Aengus / Aonghus ( Modern Irish ).

Aenghus was conceived when the Dagda, the good god, fell in love with Eithne which was also called Boann, the goddess of the Boyne River in Ireland. She was a river goddess. Boann was the wife of Elcmar of the Brug. During Boann's pregnancy, the Dagda sent Elcmar on an errand. Meanwhile Dagda used his magic to make one day last 9 months by halting the sun. At the end of the 9 months, Aenghus was born. Some say that he was born out of time. The Dagda brought Aenghus to Midir to be fostered and raised as his own son for 9 years. When Aenghus was playing with a Fir Bolg boy he was insulted or teased about not having any parents. Aenghus went to Midir and asked him about his parentage and this is when he learns that he was the son of the Dagda. When Aenghus became of age he went to his father and demanded a home and some land. The Dagda being cleaver tricks Elcmar out of his home the Brug or the Boyne River Valley. Some legends have it that Aenghus was raised by the Celtic Sea god Manannan mac Lir.  Aenghus became the ruler over the Neolithic tomb at Newgrange which was viewed as sacred and viewed by the Irish as the home of the god and an entrance to the Otherworld.

Another version of the story it was Aenghus who tricked his father, the Dagda, out of the Boyne River valley. The Dagda had already divided out his lands to his children when Aenghus arrived so he asked his father could he stay at his home in the valley for a day and a night in which Dagda agreed. To the Irish " a day and a night " covered all time, so Aenghus took possession of the valley permanently.

The love god was the harpist of the Tuatha De Danann. He had a harp that played irresistible music and his kisses would turn into birds which flew around his head that carried messages of love.  His sisters were Brigit and Aine and his brothers were Aed and Cermait.

He was considered a god of the Otherworld because his underground palace was considered on the banks on the Boyne River which could be entered by the tomb of Newgrange.

Aenghus had a dream of a beautiful young maiden which tormented him every night. He fell in love with this mysterious maiden. His mother, being worried about her son, searched the whole island of Ireland for the maiden for a year but didn't find her. His father, the Dagda, also looked for the maiden for a year and again she couldn't be found. Finally Dagda asked his aide, Bov the Red, to look for her as well. After a year of looking and searching the emerald island he found her. He took Aenghus to a loch known as the Lake of the Dragon's Mouth and there he saw 150 maidens all chained together in pairs in gold chains. Immediately Aenghus saw and recognized her. Her name was Caer, the daughter of Ethae and Anubal, a prince of the Dananns of Connact. Every November the 1st, her and all the maidens were transformed into swans for a year. Aenghus made a deal, if he could identify Caer while she was a swan he could marry her.

On the first of November, Aenghus went out to the lake called to his love. When he found her he turned himself into a swan and joined her. They flew off together singing a beautiful song and all who heard them would fall into a sleep for 3 days and nights.

Aenghus had a son called ' Diarmuid of the Love Spot '. One night while Diarmuid was hunting he met a maiden who place a magical love spot on his forehead. Whenever any woman look upon him she couldn't resist falling in love with him. Diarmuid meet Grainne and they both fell in love. Aenghus helped the fugitive lovers escape Fionn MaCumhal's vengeful wrath. He pleaded their case with Fionn and secured their freedom from his pursuit.

Aenghus is also known for abducting the unhappy Edain, the wife of Midhir from her imprisonment in the fairyland.

You can call upon Aenghus for music magic, any aid in romantic love, seek protection for lovers, any dream work and creative inspiration. Sacred objects connected to Aenghus is bowls, sapphires, cinnamon, clay, red roses, copper and rose quartz.