The Horned God of Wicca
The God of Wicca is the Horned God the ancient God of fertility: the God of forest, flock and field and also of the hunt. He is Lord of Life, and the Giver of Life, yet He is also Lord of Death and Resurrection. Like the Goddess, the nature of Her Horned Consort is also dual. For the Horned God is not only the Hunter, He is also the Hunted; He is the Sun by day, but He is also the Sun at Midnight; He is the Lord of Light, but He is also the Lord of Darkness: the darkness of night, the darkness of the Shadows, the darkness of the depths of the forest, the darkness of the depths of the Underworld.
The Horned God is the group soul of the hunted animal, invoked by the primitive shaman and the tribe: and as such, He is the Sacrificial Victim, the beast who is slain that the tribe might live, a gift from that group soul, who was often revered as the tribal totem or ancestral spirit. The Celts believed they were the descendents of the God of the Underworld, who was also the God of Fertility: the Latinised form of His name was Cernunnos, which means simply, the Horned One.
The Horned God is also the spirit of vegetation, of the green and growing things, whether of the vine or of the forest or of the field, Dionysus, Adonis, and many other vegetation and harvest Gods were all often depicted as horned, wearing the horns of the bull, the goat, the ram, or the stag: of whichever of the horned beasts has held sacred in that place and time. This aspect is the Dying and Resurrecting God who dies with the harvest and is rent asunder, as the grain is gathered in the fields; who is buried, as is the seed; who then springs forth anew, fresh and green and young, in the spring, reborn from the Womb of the Great Mother.
The Horned God is Osiris, who was often depicted with the horns of a bull. Osiris was believed to be incarnate, in a succession of sacred bulls, and worshipped in that form as the God Apis. This was yet another form and manifestation of Osiris as the God of Fertility and also of Death and Resurrection. And Osiris bears the marks of a lunar, rather than a solar God, for Set tears the body of Osiris into fourteen pieces, the number of days of the waning moon; and then Isis, the Great Mother, gathers those pieces together and restores Osiris to life again.
The Horned God is the Great God Pan, the Goat-foot God with a human torso and a human but goat-horned head, the God whose ecstatic worship was so hated by the Church that they used His description for their “Devil” and called Him the lord of all evil. Yet, to the ancients who worshiped Him, and to the modern Pagans and Witches that worship Him still, “Pan is greatest, Pan is least. Pan is all, and all is Pan”.
The Horned God is not “the Devil”, except to those who fear and reject nature, and the Powers of Life, and God, and human sexuality, and the ecstasy of the human spirit. The Horned God is the God of Wicca.
I am a stag of seven tines,
I am a wide flood on a plain,
I am a wind on the deep waters,
I am a shining tear of the sun,
I am a hawk on a cliff,
I am fair among flowers,
I am a god who sets the head afire with smoke.
I am a battle waging spear,
I am a salmon in the pool,
I am a hill of poetry,
I am a ruthless boar,
I am a threatening noise of the sea,
I am a wave of the sea,
Who but I knows the secrets of the unhewn dolmen ?
Origin obscure but certainly Celtic