*Note* Thank you Wōdgār and Farwater once again. You both help me more than anyone can imagine.*
Bolgoi is a reconstructed Proto-Celtic version of the Latin term, ‘Belgae’. The term is believed by scholars to mean, ‘Those who swell (with fury)’.
The Bolgoi (Belgae) were a mixture of both Gaulish and Germanic speaking peoples who resided in the lands the Romans termed ‘Gallia Belgica’. There are many ideas surrounding the Belgic language(s); That Celtic was a prestige language, and that Germanic was more common; the opposite; or that they perhaps had a lingua franca shared between them (which leads to the idea that perhaps they had a ‘Belgic’ language separate from Celtic and Germanic, or a creolization of both).
Julius Caesar had plenty of trouble subduing them (before finally succeeding that is), as they were reportedly more barbaric than their southern, Gaulish counterparts. The peoples within the scope of the Belgae include: -Ambiani, Atrebates, Bellovaci, Suessiones, Viromandui, Caleti, Veliocassi, Menapii, Morini, Nervii, Caerosi, Condrusi, Eburones, Paemani, Segni, Atuatuci, Treveri, Leuci, Mediomatrici, Tungri and more if we are keen to stretch it a little bit and include some peoples in Germania Superior or Inferior.
The official liturgical languages of Senobessus Bolgon is Gaulish and/or Proto Germanic. This affords modern Bolgoi the opportunity to pursue a more Celtic or Germanic approach to the tradition depending on their preference.
We are explicitly polytheistic and animistic. The Bolgoi know that the Gods are many, real and immanent, with a vested interest in the doings of our world.
- The Bolgoi emphasize worship of the gods attested in Gallia Belgica, while not necessarily restricting themselves to those deities alone.
- The Bolgoi understand the dichotomy of the sacred and profane and thus try to observe ritual purity when communing with their Gods.
- The Bolgoi understand that reconstruction is a methodology and that informed innovation has its place in a real, living religion. They are not averse to syncretism or comparative study and realize that culture and polytheism are fluid and changing things.
- The Bolgoi know that action adds strata to the U̯oberus Tonceton and therefore Drus (explained here), and that they are defined by those actions.
- The Bolgoi understand Dâmi duci Dâs/Dâs duci Dâmi – (I give as/thus/therefore you give, You give as/thus/therefore you give) and how that plays into their relationship with human beings and the numinous.
- The Bolgoi recognize the religious importance of the home and engage in domestic cultus, supplicating house gods and other household or familial spirits.
- The Bolgoi focus on martial and athletic cults and they believe a strong body and keen mind are vital to a warrior’s success.
For ease, the U̯iððua Bolgon gives a general ethical/philosophical guideline for the Bolgoi.
•Obnus dêu̯on •
•Cadsmen nerton •
•Gnîmu u̯ixtâs centiî •
•Urextus ne u̯aslon •
•Damtion ne agrî •
•Limpetus ne anxtûs coimî •
•Ne anatus ari-galâs •
•Do aiu̯î •
In English – (Philosophy/Teachings of the Bolgoi)
• Fear/Be in awe of the gods/Be pious •
As we are polytheistic, this is a self explanatory statement. We do not “work with The Gods” – we love Them and as such, worship and offer to Them.
• Maintain/Train strength •
The Bolgoi understand that Segos comes through effort and discipline. The applies to all of one’s life. While there will be Bolgoi who may struggle with the training for strength, there is always a way.
• Place the goal/mission first •
The Bolgoi are goal-oriented and understand the importance of seeing said goals through to fruition. In order to meet their goals, the Bolgoi live in accordance with their Gods and logically delineate their priorities. The Bolgoi are unwavering in their drive to attain victory and meet all challenges as they present themselves on their path.
• Do no evil •
Just as the Belgae were comprised of many differing peoples, so too should the modern Bolgoi abhor discrimination based on race, gender, sexual orientation or any immutable characteristic.
Those who speak ill of the Gods and do not pay them the respect they are due are not to be considered Bolgoi. Those who evade their responsibilities to their comrades, family and to their personal goals are, likewise, not to be considered Bolgoi.
• Never accept defeat •
The Bolgoi are not defined by the circumstances of their birth, but instead by how they react to strife, fear and misfortune. There will be times when victory is seemingly impossible and struggle overwhelming, but the Bolgoi should remain steadfast in their commitment to overcoming these challenges.
• Never leave a fallen comrade •
Bolgoi do not abandon those they choose to associate with, or those who are bound to them by religious ties, unless they do evil.
• Never quit •
As Bolgoi are steadfast in mind, so too should they be in body and in action – refusing to yield in times of duress.
• Do this forever/always •
These teachings are to be followed ad infinitum by the Bolgoi.
Some final words for aspiring Bolgoi:
•Smoχtus Geniet Segon•
Discipline births strength/victory/force.
•Ne Angetu. Glanndetu tou Nerton•
Fear not. Shine your strength.