"What is Druidry?" Members offer their views.

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Gwydion
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Postby Gwydion » 13 Aug 2003, 23:22

I am a student of the Bardic arts and walk the path of the Druid. Not all Bards are Druids, but all Druids are Bards and they are Ovates as well.
When I say that I walk the path of the Druid this is because many that have gone this path before me cannot be described by any other word and be on point. All of the principals and ideas presented here may sound nice to an interested party looking in, but this offers little hint to the experience. Poetry is used often by Bards and Druids because this is as close as words can get to telling the tale. Sometimes a dream may not make any logical sense to us, but this is how our soul speaks to us, Poetry is a way for us to speak back to our souls in a way that can be understood.
Honesty (good point) trancends the use of words and enters life. To live by your philosophies and principals. There is a triad that gives 3 occasions for speaking an untruth without need for concern. There are times when it is necessary to keep peace, to preserve the dignity of another, and to protect the craft of your wise. But this does not mean that it is okay to live a lie. The backbone of integrity upholds all those that I know that I can call "Druid".
For the onlookers, if you wish to walk the path then do so as your conscience urges. If you are of the curious sort but have not decided, find some Bardic Poetry, take it in. Then, if it feels right, try and figure out the source of the song.

dathlu y taith,
Gwydion

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alfajeffster
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Postby alfajeffster » 14 Aug 2003, 18:00

OKAY- I'm not getting any work done today- this sticky post-it note has entirely engulfed me! :o

Blessings to everyone here who has offered of themselves. I am feeling like the Aboriginal employee about to go walkabout... and the scary thing, is I realize it's healthy for me to feel this way.

:quert:

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shackers
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Postby shackers » 21 Aug 2003, 18:15

I like this question, although i'm not a Druid i walk a very similar path, here from the outside looking in is my view.

Essentially it becomes a state of mind on a journey of discovery, gaining insight and wisdom as well as understanding on the way. The obvious principal of being a Druid have to be adered to and the history & Hertage of this order clarifies this. The connection may of been weakened through modern life, i'm not in the position to say if this is so as i'm not a Druid. It's very difficult in a modern world to maintain standards, i'd like to think they are.

Tradition is very important and has to be kept in place although Druids, priest and Shamans no longer play an integral part in society as once they did. Life is more modern now, people can read & write (well some can hahahhaah) so are not as self reliant. On saying that it's very important that Druids and the like show the way in preserving history, culture, Belief and the Environment with the ancient Philosophies.

You know i could write more but will end on this point if i may.. To teach with regard to History, spiritual well being, herbs & Incense is more important now than it has been for centuries. The land is being killed and like minded people have to stand and be counted, if you like Defend the lands..

Look at the issue of stone henge: http://www.savestonehenge.org.uk/homepage.html

This is madness that is taking Culture, History and the spiritual rights of thousands of us, a cause worth standing up for..

Thanks again for reading. :grin:

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MistWalker
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Postby MistWalker » 23 Aug 2003, 18:37

Greetings All. My name is MistWalker, and the journey has been a long one (please forgive the road dust). I came into Celtic Studies through an intensive study of Irish Mythology and subjects which help one to understand the nature of these profound old Legends. I came into Druidry through a Pagan Spiritual search for the God I have always been able to *sense*. I have so far not taken up Shamanism or Magick, and this has made me an odd fit in certain circles. I tend to stand up for the fundamentals of the source material, which I have collected the best translations in English that I have been able to locate. My Spiritual growth, Earth-Centered all of my life, has been both ongoing and rich. I have just found out that I am able to *communicate* with non-human creatures through an empathic link.

Druidry, to me, is the temporal study of the elder Myths, in an effort to understand what was necessarily veiled, and what is essentially only a differing turn of phrase. Druidry, to me is a connection with the Ancestors and our Celtic heritage in this way. Since I am naturally Earth-Centered, this only strengthens the ties that bind me to the Druid Way. So I guess Druidry, to me, is scholarly, Spiritual and Earth-Centric. I hope my deeply held value for the source material will be welcome here -- it is very important to me. To me, the Elder Myths are both scholarly and Spiritual; after years of study, this relationship is deepening immensly.

I wish Peace to all.

Blessings Of Earth And Sky... MistWalker

Song Of Caoilte

I am the son of Poetry,

Poetry, son of Reflection,

Reflection, son of Meditation,

Meditation, son of Lore,

Lore, Son of Research,

Research, son of Great Knowledge,

Great Knowledge, son of Intelligence,

Intelligence, son of Comprehension,

Comprehension, son of Wisdom,

Wisdom, son of the Three Gods Of Dana

Sung By The Druid Caoilte

Translation © John Matthews

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Alferian
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Postby Alferian » 25 Aug 2003, 01:49

I have just found out that I am able to *communicate* with non-human creatures through an empathic link.
Greetings MistWalker and thanks for your post -- and thanks everyone else too! It struck me that you have put your finger on the very center of Druidry for me: that empathic connection and communication with the non-human world. That the center lies in empathy goes a long way to explain why words can never do it justice. It is a way of experiencing the world, not a way of talking about it or reducing it to words.

I imagine the old druid sitting with her young student. "What is Druidry?" asks the student. The old druid picks up a birch branch and whacks her student over the head with it.

By sea and star,

Alferian /|\

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lupiana
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Postby lupiana » 03 Sep 2003, 06:24

Alferian and others, I could read and re-read your posts for hours to absorb all the wisdom in them. Thank you! *ducks as Alferian whacks me with a birch bough*

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Alferian
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Postby Alferian » 03 Sep 2003, 06:43

Here's an interesting site I stumbled upon. It sets out a whole series of quotes from various books defining druidry and wrassling with the question of whether modern neo-pagan druids are in any way deserving of the name:

http://www.sophiagroup.org/druid.html

It's worth it just for the snapshots of all those books and references to them (including pictures of the covers of most).

-- A.

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lupiana
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Postby lupiana » 03 Sep 2003, 07:58

Unfortunately the veneration of Druidic wisdom is gone. In a day and age when a shopping mall easily replaces a forest the emphasis is more on greed than making connection with nature. Lacking full knowledge of what the Druids actually did, a romanticised creation of it doesn't sound so bad to me. Certainly we don't want the spears and torches! But to be able to embrace nature and regain a respect for what many think has been put here to be used... that has value.

I was rather shocked to hear that animals were "souless", as I've never considered this part of the Christian faith. It's this cavalier attitude that could bring us to destruction, much less causing us to lose our own spirituality.

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Wolfwalker
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Postby Wolfwalker » 07 Sep 2003, 01:49

Greetings learned Alferian... My name is magewind. I'm of both shamanic and bardic roots, a solitary who lives in Newfoundland... The Awen is a part of my soul, discernable these forty years or more. The shaman came from my mother's side... (half celt, part native & french...). My question is regards not to how I may embrace what I am, have, see, know or am intimately connected with at all times, places and lives, here and in Otherworld. I was for a time even a christian priest, though could not deny my true self, so I left it.
In a singularity of each 'grade' I have been told the bard is the keper of tradition & learning, custodian of the words, poet, philosopher, and student of the Ogham stick... I was told the Ovate works in the process of death and regeneration, the healers among the druids, specializing in divination and the conversing with ancestors, and prophesy. Thirdly I was told the druid is and was the embodiment of the other two, but more... that from times ancient, they were the 'professional' class of daily life; teacher, ambassador, astronomer, geneologist, poet, philosopher, scientist, in Eire a Brehon judge, the leaders of public ritual, though not as christian priests presuming to be an intermediary, but as the director of a ritual as a shaman, guiding and containing the rites... those normally held within the pale of the sacred grove.
Im my life journey in this world I have had no guide to teach me in a set fashion by the gwers, but through study of mabinogian, prose Edda, much obscure materiel I have been able to get my hands on over the years and good texts by sensibl;e & sensitive scholars, placed alongside my teachings in my native roots in medicine, wholeness of all life and through many varied nd unusual passages in my life in this world linked to Otherworld,
I would ask how is it I have been taught and learned, experienced things from all three levels of druidry from my shamanistic roots? Where and how would I begin this study? Some of my bardic skills are known and can be attested to by members of this group, others by those unknown in this board... I wish to learn what I may here, to share it with others in the span I have left before I go once more to Otherworld again as is our destiny. Can you give me some goodly counsel sir?
Bright Blessings And Peace be unto you.
Love people and use things, NOT use people and love things...

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Alferian
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Postby Alferian » 09 Sep 2003, 03:44


I would ask how is it I have been taught and learned, experienced things from all three levels of druidry from my shamanistic roots? Where and how would I begin this study? ... Can you give me some goodly counsel sir?
Greetings Magewind! Sorry I didn't see your post till now. For some reason the message board is not automatically notifying me of new posts to this thread. Gremlins.

Anyway, your thoughts are in accord with mine. OBOD places the teaching of ogham in the Ovate grade along with other forms of divination, but otherwise, the grades are seen essentially as you describe. One difference in modern Druidry,though, is that the Druid grade -- what we might call the Druid of the White perhaps -- does not have the same kind of automatic status and social role as did the Druids of old. Yet, one can certainly take up the mantle to teach and lead a much as the "druid community" may desire.

If you have not already done so, spend some time perusing the Avalon College thread. It's interminably long (actually there's an earlier thread which is also very long), but one of the topics under discussion is whether Nova Scotia might be a good location for the college. Some are fearful of the mist and snow... I'd be interested in your opinion as one from Newfoundland.

Please feel free to send me a p.m. if you have other questions about the study of druidry. There are others at this pub wiser than I but few who blather on and on as much. :wink:

By sea, stone, and star,

Alferian

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Wolfwalker
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Postby Wolfwalker » 12 Sep 2003, 03:16

My shaman past is drifting into my druidic side such that I thought to post a reflection of what for me druidry is, accomplishes or seeks.
Wherever you may go in this whole world,
you have an opportunity...
to meet some of the best people this planet has to offer,
and also some of the worst examples of humanity,
living side by side.
When we think about bridging the gaps between ourself
and the person we feel is the best,
remember they may help us to build more bridges...
ones to allow the worst to meet the truly good person or even us,
and for a moment life has balance,
for us all to be better for the experience of that moment in time.
[PJS (me); 9-11-03]
:zen:
Love people and use things, NOT use people and love things...

DraigMor
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Postby DraigMor » 02 Nov 2003, 16:50

Most interesting start and responses. I thank you one and all for this enlightenment.
I am one of the solitary practioners of druidy as I have come to know it. And all that I read on web pages and msg brds like this bring sme that much closer, but splitting off from the original thread and yet in the same light, as" who are / what are druids" I have anoither question to pose.

I have been through several religions in my life from stought roman cathlic upbringing to episcapalian in the teens as a youth group, and only once in my life has anyone ever asked me about my religious preference, that was when I went to college and boarded in a house with the "brothers of pope pios the 2nd" WHo incendentally made a fantastic mixed drink.
anyway when I went to get lodging there, as there was no place else to stay they asked me what my religon was.

My question is this do you outwordly tell others that you are a druid? blatantly? or do you simply have your beliefs and leave it at that?
Interested to know what others do as I have gotten strange looks from those that I have told.

ps I like the simplefied version best. although the rdna simpliefied it even farther as "Nature is good."

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Wolfwalker
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Postby Wolfwalker » 03 Nov 2003, 01:36

welcome friend... y'are what y'are is a truth, but there will times you don't feel like broadcasting it either. Until I 'got over it' I tried to live the 'christian' life, as a priest in the Anglican (Episcopal)church for 16 yrs and denying a lot of what I was studying and doing... I have only one person who I have not been so open with, my aged mother (83) because her heart is weak, and she really wouldn't understand anyway... I mean if she went the way she did when my sister came out, why sould I tell her I'm bi also... she was upset enough when I left the priesthood under the conscience clause and told her my "heart wasn't in it anymore..." she hasn't given up the hope but probably knows inside I'd never go back to that hypocrisy either... be who and what you are. If asked you can judge for yourself at that time and place... a 'seeker for truth', or a 'traveller on the journey' of life can silence many questions, or stimulate intelligent discussions... a 'wayfaring bard in search of lodgings for the night means you'd better have a poem or a tale or songs ready after the meal... but if you do, it is the best of the m all... you tell no lies and share a taste of the druids' life with them while maintaining your own privacy...
If there's b-thumpers about who ask "do believe in God?" ask which ones? and they'll tend to leave you pretty muich alone... or "are you saved" to reply "I wasn't aware you were holding me hostage... I'm not sure..."
anyway, as you cvan tell, I am as saucy as the wolf who is my totem and the rabbit who guides me... peace...
Love people and use things, NOT use people and love things...

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Postby CopperLion » 03 Nov 2003, 02:30

Greetings DraigMor,

I do not have as enchanting a bardic tale to spin as my tall evergreen friend before me *copperlion rubs his butt against Magewind's trunk then scratches his claws on the bark*
My thought on your question is this; Druidry is first, and foremost, a path of inner work and discovery. Unlike Christianity, it does not require that we "bear witness to others and show them the path of salvation".
On a practical level, discretion is wisdom. Why make yourself a target, it serves no purpose.

CopperLion curls up at the base of his big old firtree friend for a catnap.

:henge: :ravens: :zzz: :realacorn:
"We are made wise not by the recollection of our past, but by the responsibility for our future. "
- George Bernard Shaw

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Wolfwalker
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Postby Wolfwalker » 03 Nov 2003, 02:58

In the westerly breeze the mage doth call... upon a kitty's head many fir cones fall...
:-) aww... poor pudytat, didum's get hurt?
:lol:
You're welcome to shelter beneath my boughs anytime you have need to my brothers and sisters, just don't pee on me, scratch the finish or soil my ground with your shite please (use the spruce down the hill if you have to go potty...)
blessings... Peter
Love people and use things, NOT use people and love things...

Breoghan
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Postby Breoghan » 12 Nov 2003, 00:22

On whether we let it be known we are Druids; well, the university charges us $700 per anum to park on campus, but at the same time provides a free, unlimited pass to the metro, which I took advantage of when I lived closer to campus. I was making use of the commute time by reading the gwersi of the Bardic Grade one day when a woman asked me what I was doing. I responded that I was "studying to become a Druid." She responded "you have to study for THAT?" Then realised how that came out and backed off a bit.

Essentially, Druid = crackpot in mainstream society. So I only discuss my Druidical pursuits with those who would understand. One mustn't profane the sacred or allow it to be subjected to ridicule. This is the reason stated in the gwersi for keeping them within the membership of the order.

Basically, I don't care what anybody thinks; but I don't talk about it at work.

Breoghan

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CopperLion
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Postby CopperLion » 12 Nov 2003, 00:40

Your words ring of wisdom Breoghan. I've found that if you tell someone your studying Wicca they either ask if you can cast a spell to turn someone they hate into a Newt, or they back away from you with a look of fear & trepidation in their eyes. If you say your studying Druidry they have a quizzacal look on their face and a reply something like "Well allrighty then . . . " :? :lol:

CL :awen:
"We are made wise not by the recollection of our past, but by the responsibility for our future. "
- George Bernard Shaw

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Galadriel
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Postby Galadriel » 12 Nov 2003, 03:10

they either ask if you can cast a spell to turn someone they hate into a Newt,
I generally smile sweetly and tell them that there's no sense in being redundant. Most times, they don't get it. :o

:raven:
Galadriel

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Wolfwalker
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Postby Wolfwalker » 12 Nov 2003, 15:00

:-) liked that bit...
well, my two oldest sons had two different but accepting views. Tim who's out & on his own, grinned and said, well that's it... be what you are. Ben, who's in High School said he can understand a bit why I felt I couldn't believe in christianity as a valid path for me, he'd respect my choices and beliefs and let him believe what he wants to... What coould I say? What I did say is basically that we're about letting others be on their own path, not into recruiting like the holy rollers in the warehouse 'church' a mile up the road from us...
That said, if someone is asking me about it or wants me to share with them I have nothing to fear as far as I know, so a couple of friends have been 'visiting' the site, looking at OBOD as a possible place to find what they've been seeking in life...
Love people and use things, NOT use people and love things...

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CúChulainn
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Postby CúChulainn » 23 Nov 2003, 01:32

Im not new to the ideas or teachings of druidry but I would like to learn it....Although I dont exactly know HOW....Id like to be in the bardic region or druidic region as I am rather knowledgeable(more so than most people) about these subjects... Do I need a teacher or is it more a solitary pursuit?


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