What Druids and some Celtic Pagans call the Three Kindreds are; the Deities (Goddesses and Gods) we honor, our Ancestors, and the Nature Spirits.
When Pagans talk about the Gods and Goddesses all together, they are sometimes called the Shining Ones. People have many different beliefs about what they are. Here are some of those beliefs: the deities are all spirit-parts of the living universe… they are powers, or forces of life… the Gods and Goddesses are the First Ancestors and heros af long ago… some believe that the deities are different aspects, or personalities of one Great Spirit. There are so many different Gods and Goddesses… each deity holds a key to a different way of understanding the mysteries of the universe. Most Pagans and Pagan families have just a few deities that they worship (their patrons), but respect and sometimes pay homage to others.
The Ancestors are also called Mighty Ones by some Pagans. Some of our ancestors live in the Otherworld and watch over us and guide us. We cannot see them, but sometimes they come to us in dreams. Other ancestors may be living a new life through reincarnation. It is a Celtic belief that ancestors will often be reborn into the same family.
We especially honor our ancestors and dead loved ones at Samhain, the Celtic Feast of Summer’s End- October 31st. Listen to the words of the song “Blood of the Ancients” and think about your connection to the Ancestors.
It’s the blood of the ancients / That runs through our veins
And the forms pass / But the circle of life remains
Spirits of Land and Nature
The spirits of land and Nature are sometimes called the Noble Ones by some Pagans. They are spirits of place, inhabitants and guardians of root and leaf and land. In Celtic lands, these spirits are called the Sídhe (pronounced shee)- but more often called the Good People or Fair Folk (fairies). In other places they may be known by other names.
They are not merely little winged creatures, but powerful and noble spirits to be treated with respect. We show them this respect by protecting the environment and treading lightly in their realms. We may also show our respect by making offerings to them of milk and bread.