Friday, 12 February 2016

Einigen Gawr - Some Giant

This a mash-up of various times I've come across Einigen Gawr, one a story written by a Tom Byrne and I can't find it via google. I can't find much on Einigen, so it seems his story is consigned to the hidden recesses of the internet. This is because Iolo Morganwg and his Barddas is regarded by many as a fraud. His is not authentic, provable Medieval knowledge but he suggested it was. The question of quality is not considered, particularly in this digital binary age when the Twitterati and Face-achers leap upon liminal knowledge with a howl of faux-outrage and vent their spleen from the safety of their mobile profile.

However, I suggest it is time to reconsider Iolo's place in the Druidic continuum as his was one of the spark's that ignited the Romantic movement to explore the Celtic Twilight which led to the Meso-druidic movement and then onto today's modern Druidic paths. Many of those interested in the Druidic path have not heard of Einigen Gawr, einigen in German means 'some', gawr in Welsh means giant. Which is about right, Einigen Gawr is some giant that in Iolo's Barddas is the primary giant, perhaps a little like Ymir to the Norse. There is a quality that continues in the symbol of Druidry the /|\ . So here are three views on the Druidic primal giant of wisdom.


This is taken from Iolo's Barddas

  1. The three principal elements 2 of every thing: power; matter; and mode.
  2. The three principal elements of sciences: life; intellect; and affection.
  3. The three elements of wisdom: object; mode; and benefit.
  4. The three elements of memorials: understanding from affection; distinctive sign; and reverence for the better.
  5. The three elements of letters, ; that is to say, from a combination of one or other of the three are letters made.
They are three rays of light. Einigan the Giant beheld three pillars of light, having in them all demonstrable sciences that ever were, or ever will be. And he took three rods of the quicken tree, and placed on them the forms and signs of all sciences, so as to be remembered; and exhibited them. But those who saw them misunderstood, and falsely apprehended them, and taught illusive sciences, regarding the rods as a God, whereas they only bore His Name. When Einigan saw this, he was greatly annoyed, and in the intensity of his grief he broke the three rods, nor were others found that contained accurate sciences. He was so distressed on that account that from the intensity he burst asunder, and with his [parting] breath he prayed God that there should be accurate sciences among men in the flesh, and there should be a correct understanding for the proper discernment thereof. And at the end of a year and a day, after the decease of Einigan, Menw, son of the Three Shouts, beheld three rods growing out of the mouth of Einigan.

AODA - John Michael Greer

The eminent Druid John Michael Greer refers to him in his book "The Celtic Golden Dawn" and paraphrases Iolo as follows.

In the beginning of things Einigen Gawr, the first of all created beings, beheld three rays of light descending from the heavens in which were the all the knowledge there ever was and ever will be. These were three voices and the three letters of one name, the Name of the Infinite One:

  • A, Knowledge, the sign of Gwion, the Bounty of Nature
  • W, Power, the sign of Cerridwen, the Cauldron of Annwn
  • N, Peace, the sign of Taliesin, the Child of Light
GewessiMan says If Gwion, Cerridwen and Taliein don't call to you then Beli, Arianrhod and Lleu may or for us Gewessi we could look at Ingvi-Freyr, Frig and Balder.

Another view

Excerpts from a long story by a Tom Byrne, internet denizen that I can no longer find..."You may have come across the story of Einigan Gawr, the legendary discoverer of the Coelbren. Here is my amplification of the tale:EINIGAN GAWR To meet with their instructors of the soul, The pious pack together in their choir and worshipped an idol.
And does the wind's swift passage have one goal?
And is one briny mass the sea entire?
And is one spark the fierce unbounded fire?
- from the Spoils of Annwn. In unwritten time, Which compressed itself in the memory, not a chronicle, When a word had life for as long as air would resound with it...

But the Hot Years came. And the sun and rain did not shine and fall as they had before, But the sun shone on and excluded all of the cooling rain, And the barley was burned in the ground and the apples on trees. The withered flow thrashed, and writhed ineffectively over scorched stones. And the deaths began. First the lambs and calves on the parched hillsides when the grass was browned, Then the old and young, when their weakened frames could not fight disease. The adherents all stood at their idol and called on his name, But Einigan Gawr dug graves for his wife and his child.

Then he found a cave and the burning sun made him seek the cool, dark interior. And within the cave were a brackish pool and a bed of moss. So the water and mosses, he mixed them together and drank, And when the sun set, he sat at the mouth of his cave and he called:
"What did we do wrong?
At the cave's mouth, Einigan Gawr saw clouds calm the sun's raw ire. For a long time, Einigan Gawr gazed skyward and did not squint. Then the cloud broke apart in three places and sunbeams streamed out.A triad of light, one left and one right and one streaking straight down.

And the air was still, But he heard a voice, and it called him: "Einigan Gawr, your wail Cut a corridor from your mouth through brain, through your heart to soul, And your body became a huge horn for that note of pure grief. Your case has been made. Your anguish is answered, so listen to me: See your vale below. All the life down there is down there to change, to be born and die, And if some die soon, and if some die late, that is as it is...

Then you must reach out in the boiling broth and collect yourself. You must find the "I". Then your thoughts and words and your deeds will flow from one source, which is solid and sturdy, to stand the fierce tides. Integrity then, I name as the second support for your leap. But of course your life will be brushed by storms and by eddied force that you can't control, and from time to time you'll be prised away from the cauldron's rim. When you know this, at once you must turn and kick out for the brim; You must persevere, till courage and honour shall strengthen your grip.
There are three supports: They are Perseverance, Integrity and Courageousness.
They are all required for your salmon-leap from the cauldron broth.

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