by Sybok Pendderwydd
Awhile back I received an email from someone who wanted to know if we “knew the TRUE meaning” of the seven pointed star. I think at the time I blew him off, thinking that this was a symbol that was thousands of years old, so how can it have a “true meaning?” It’s meaning is whatever the individual or group wants that meaning to be. But in reflecting back, that seems like a rather lame explanation, so I’ve done a little more research.
Wikipedia has an extensive article which gives a good overall view, but just scratches the surface. You can view that article here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faery_star
In my research I have found that long before it was adopted by “Otherkin” or by the “Feri Tradition” it was a recurring symbol amongst the ancient Druids. They called it the “Seren Derwydd” and it often times was hidden among Celtic knot work designs. It was first discovered by itself by an archeologist, Dr. Ebrill Ynfytyn, digging near the Ars river in Brittany. He found what he thought was a simple stone square plate, the symbol having been carved on it sometime in antiquity. As he dug further, the plate was the top of a longer marker, about 3 feet long, with an inscription in Ogham on four of it’s sides. Later he translated the inscription, which was from the ancient Welsh, and found that it was a grave marker for the grave of an ancient Druid. Now this was an important discovery because heretofore it had been assumed that Druids always cremated their dead, and indeed this was usually the case, but carbon dating this marker indicated that it came from a much earlier time, perhaps before the practice of cremation was adopted, centuries before the Roman invasion of Gaul.
Digging further, it was discovered that the marker was actually the top of a long buried mound. Bones and grave goods were found within, further confirming that the grave was that of a high ranking Druid.
The Order of the Mithril Star has used the seven pointed star since it’s beginning in 1996 (years before anyone decided they were “Otherkin”) as it was a symbol that spoke to the co-founders. Since then it has been adopted by the greater Reformed Druid movement.
Perhaps the author of the original letter didn’t mean “true meaning” but rather the “deeper meaning.” If so, the following links will take you to a series of articles exploring that very question:
Part 1: http://druidsegg.reformed-druids.org/newsimbolc08-07.htm
Part 2: http://druidsegg.reformed-druids.org/newsbeltane08-18.htm
Part 3: http://druidsegg.reformed-druids.org/newslughnasadh08-05.htm
Part 4: http://druidsegg.reformed-druids.org/newssamhain08-10.htm
Part 5: http://druidsegg.reformed-druids.org/newsimbolc09-14.htm
Part 6: http://druidsegg.reformed-druids.org/newsbeltane09-14.htm
Part 7: http://druidsegg.reformed-druids.org/newslughnasadh09-14.htm
Want to learn more about Reformed Druidism? The best place we know of to start is with The Druid Path course. You may in addition wish to explore a recommended book list maintained by elder Druids: The Bibliography of Essential Druidic Knowledge.