Pictures in my head

Modern conceptions of the gods

I've been having a couple of email exchanges inspired in part by Taproot: Family, Guests, Ancestors, and Gods. And since my headspace isn't into sharing much else right now, I thought I'd talk about that briefly here.

I'd like to know, how would you depict the gods in modern form?

See for me, the American version of the Celtic gods will always resemble the Southern branch of the family. There are good reasons for this (Cracker Culture: Celtic Ways in the Old South), but it also comes from my family heritage. These are the people I associated with the land and the spirit of the land. Not quite all of them, but close. I pictured them that way before I read American Gods: A Novel, although that definitely made it easier to accept.

I understand that in Wonder Woman comics a few years ago all the Greek and Roman gods were merged and turned into business executives, complete with briefcases. Certainly not my cup of tea. And rabid reader that I am, I turn to fantasy fiction quite a bit. Make that a lot. My fiction reading is made up of about one third fantasy, one third science fiction, and one third other. In fantasy, when the gods are depicted at all, it's usually contemporary with the characters. The gods and characters are part of the same world.

I used to try to invoke the romantic classic godmask, how those gods were depicted before the Romans came to Gaul. Terribly impressive to me at the time, but it wasn't who they were now. They aren't stuck in the third century, they're living entities.

So yep, probably tattooed. Pickup trucks or stock car racing. Sun kissed and not all that modest. Friendly, passionate about who they are and what they represent. Occasionally there are aristocrats, but the kind who still strip to the waist and wrestle during parties and get togethers. War chiefs instead of royalty. In some ways, not all that removed from the people that they live with.

I suspect that Lugh may have had a hand in inventing barbeque. And Somebody certainly inspired moonshine.

Now the Diné gods are different. One of these days when I have a week or so to explain it, I'll go into details. I don't share their beliefs, but I respect them and their land has certainly shaped me and my relationship with my gods.

The pre-Christian image of the Celtic gods isn't the one I use. I believe that gods move among us all the time.

My gods have electricity. They may not use it that much, but they have it.

Posted: Mon - February 2, 2009 at 07:56 AM
 ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊ 

Random selections from NeoWayland's library

Technopagan Yearnings
© 2005 - 2010   All Rights Reserved