The Basque people or culture occupied Europe before the spread of Indo-European languages to Europe. Analysis of Basque genetic patterns has shown that Basque genetic uniqueness predates the arrival of agriculture in the Iberian Peninsula, 7,000 years ago.
The mythology of the ancient Basques largely did not survive the arrival of Christianity in the 4th century AD. Most of what is known about this original belief system is based on legends, the study of place names and scant historical references to pagan rituals practised by the Basques.
The main figure was the female character of Mari. The other main figure was her consort Sugaar. Mari is depicted in many different forms: sometimes as various women, as different red animals, as the black he-goat, etc. Her consort Sugaar, however, appears only as a man or a serpent/dragon.
Mari is said to be served by the sorginak, semi-mythical creatures impossible to differentiate from actual witches or pagan priestesses. The cadre of witches near Zugarramurdi met at Akelarre field and were the target of the Spanish Inquisition’s largest witch hunt at Logroño.[…]Basque Mythology, Ancestral Religion, Spirituality, and Modern Religions — a Convention Biarritz
AN INTERPRETATION OF PAGAN BASQUE RELIGION — giorno pagano memoria
[…]The Basque language is the only one in western Europe that doesn’t belong to Indoeuropean languages’ group.
Basque paganism is mostly a feminine one. This paganism recognized the magic in life and reproduction as they meant continuity of the life itself. Like in every other paganism, the presence of more than one consciousness causes conflicts that produce other consciousnesses. Without these Consciousnesses, other Consciousnesses wouldn’t be born. This is true for all the Beings of nature and for the self consciousness of Nature-Being.
This is the first breath of paganism. The first blow taking Human Beings into the magic of life, leading them to go beyond the shape to penetrate the noumenia of the existence.
The Earth as the mother is the fundamental element of Basque religion with an absolutely original variation. The Earth-Being is called Lur, and allows the existence of Nature-Being and the development of all those Self Consciousnesses who form her. Lur was honoured by leaving pieces of gold in caves, so giving back to the earth what belongs to her. The original feature is that the earth-Lur was the home of Mari, “The Lady”. Mari was considered an infernal deity; actually, Mari was the Vital Fource coming from inside the Earth to the surface. The Vital Fource originated by the Self Consciousness of the Earth. The Vital Fource that ensured bountiful harvests. The Vital Fource needed by the Nature-Being and by all the Self-Consciousnesses that compound her in order to nourish the changes to become. This Power of Being of the Earth-Being was a power that the Basque knew very well, whose memory was fading little by little with the spreading of christianity, which was killing the Basque’s ability of to relate with the surrounding world and especially with the earth.
Basque paganism underwent incredible violence. First it underwent battles between catholic Franks and Spanish arian christians, then the fights between muslims and catholics Franks. The Basque people has been the only one succeeding in stopping muslims in western Europe but underwent religious tensions so hard that they lost their original perception of the surrounding world.[…]AN INTERPRETATION OF PAGAN BASQUE RELIGION — giorno pagano memoria