I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

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Ade Sundog
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Re: I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

Postby Ade Sundog » 29 Jun 2015, 20:14

I found that doing rituals on my own to be great , but amongst other people , not so. It felt like being at drama school or something .
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Re: I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

Postby DaRC » 30 Jun 2015, 11:28

We need to ask ourselves first why we are doing the ritual. "Because the 'Gwers' told me to"! "It's that time of the year"! "It's Monday"! Wrong! You do ritual because you want to, because you feel the need.
Ask yourself what you want from the ritual. If the ritual does not have purpose for you, then don't do it!
To an extent I think you are right... when you are familiar with ritual.

I think early on, during the Bardic Gwersi then "Because the 'Gwers' told me to" is a valid reason. It's a bit like any sort of training, at first a padawan cannot see the point or understand it or is just wilfully against it.
Sometimes you have to practice and experience something before you can understand it.
Once you can understand it then you can ask yourself why you are doing it.
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Re: I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

Postby malcolmb » 30 Jun 2015, 13:01

Darc - I do take your point and fully agree we do need something to get us started. What I am (hopefully!) trying to say is that we need to first stop and think. Why does the Gwers present us with a ritual at this point in our study? What is the ritual meant to achieve for me? Simply reading out the words in the Gwers without previous thought is a bit like reading a telephone directory at random! It may have all the phone numbers you need but which one do you really want?

Of course I applaud those who created the rituals in the Gwers. Considerable thought and experience has gone into putting together the words and I frequently use those words myself in my rituals. But equally I have no restraint in adapting the words to fit my needs. OK, so I am a little bit more experienced than those who are first starting in ritual. But even at the very beginning of my studies, I always asked myself "Why?". I would read the ritual several times and seek the intent. Ask myself if I was really ready for it. Did I understand it? Did I agree with it? Doing anything because you are told to do it limits the meaningfulness of that act. Doing something because you are fully in accord with the intent hugely enhances the act.

I do believe that everyone who takes on the wonderful voyage of discovery that is the Gwers, does so with a yearning to learn and to experience this illuminating and exhilarating world of Druidry. Within that world, we each walk our own Path. Finding that Path starts at the first page of the first Gwers. The Gwers are our Guide, not a statement of absolute and incontrovertible truth. So we must question and challenge, accept and decline from day one to find our own way.

When people say they find ritual silly and feel like an idiot, at least to me, it is because they need to remember that you enter Druidry for yourself, not to be part of a club. Clubs have rules and procedures. Druidry does not. The Gwers are there to help you express Your Druidry. Not mine or anyone else's. If your idea of ritual is sitting at home or under a tree mulling over the words and intent of a ritual, then so be it. That's fine. Just make the ritual your own. And yes (horror of horrors!), if you don't like ritual, don't do it! There is nothing in Druidry that says you have to. Just accept that some people find it deeply meaningful and helpful. But above all, at all times, be your own Druid.
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Re: I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

Postby nightfire » 30 Jun 2015, 14:08

Well said ShadowCat!!!! Just wanted to peek my head in and say that I just found this thread and have enjoyed it. :)

Nightfire /|\
Very valuable responses all above, that really get me thinking too...

I'd like to add something to my earlier response: For me, after years of both simple ritualistic work and being a guest at fullblown rituals with all the bells and whistles (which I love and where I'm always at my best behaviour, because I'm a guest and behave that way), this clean and simple approach for solitary rituals has become a second nature to the degree that ritual and daily life merge. When stressed, holding a warm mug of herbal tea and sniffing the steam coming of it, can take me into wild woods for a moment of peace and cleansing. While cooking, I thank the organic chicken and am aware of the whole downline of hands and workers that have brought her to me in my kitchen, the stirring motion becoming a magic circle. In essence, it's my inner kitchenwitch that got more space to be. And in private ritual, I'm not above cracking a joke and drinking beer from a bottle.

So what I really want to say it that it is useful when starting to practice form, but once you get a gist of the function behind the form, feel free to change the form to suit your personality, at least in solitary work.

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Re: I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

Postby DaRC » 01 Jul 2015, 11:21

it is because they need to remember that you enter Druidry for yourself, not to be part of a club. Clubs have rules and procedures. Druidry does not. The Gwers are there to help you express Your Druidry. Not mine or anyone else's. If your idea of ritual is sitting at home or under a tree mulling over the words and intent of a ritual, then so be it. That's fine. Just make the ritual your own. And yes (horror of horrors!), if you don't like ritual, don't do it! There is nothing in Druidry that says you have to. Just accept that some people find it deeply meaningful and helpful. But above all, at all times, be your own Druid.
yes :applause: totally get your point and I love this, and may steal it or praraphrase it... if that's ok.
Most dear is fire to the sons of men,
most sweet the sight of the sun;
good is health if one can but keep it,
and to live a life without shame. (Havamal 68)
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Re: I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

Postby malcolmb » 01 Jul 2015, 20:34

it is because they need to remember that you enter Druidry for yourself, not to be part of a club. Clubs have rules and procedures. Druidry does not. The Gwers are there to help you express Your Druidry. Not mine or anyone else's. If your idea of ritual is sitting at home or under a tree mulling over the words and intent of a ritual, then so be it. That's fine. Just make the ritual your own. And yes (horror of horrors!), if you don't like ritual, don't do it! There is nothing in Druidry that says you have to. Just accept that some people find it deeply meaningful and helpful. But above all, at all times, be your own Druid.
yes :applause: totally get your point and I love this, and may steal it or praraphrase it... if that's ok.
DaRC - please do, I would be delighted. Amend or adapt as you wish.
Peaceful Earth Grove: https://www.peacefulearthgrove.com/


My original "Druid Music" CDs (all proceeds to the charity "Pagan Aid":
https://lylemusic.bandcamp.com/

My original Celtic / Folk / Jazz music at:
http://www.soundclick.com/lylemusic
http://www.soundclick.com/malcolmbrown
http://www.youtube.com/user/LyleMusic

“So many Gods, so many creeds, so many paths that wind and wind. While just the art of being kind, is all the sad world needs.” Ella Wheeler Wilcox

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Re: I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

Postby Fil.F. » 09 Jul 2015, 04:55

I am new here but I guess that you and me are needing of an icon, a sign for or from your office work in druid or bard path.
And, what can I imagine? I can just imagine it as a ring ... Consacrate it !!!

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Re: I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

Postby skepticskitchen » 09 Jul 2015, 09:52

I've practiced ritual as a monastic christian, wiccan, and now druid. When I first started, I felt much the same as you. To put it bluntly, I felt retarded. Then I came to an important realization...the ritual isn't for the gods or goddesses...it's for me. In time it came to bring order to my day and week.

It's important to do the sacred grove and light body exercise before even casting your circle, as this can sometimes have a very real physical effect on you. When I do the light body exercise, I feel as if I am being immersed into a liquid in reverse. My heart feels as if it's filling up with energy that needs to be released. When I have achieved a sense of "about to overflow," that's when I cast my circle and proceed with the ritual. I leave the ritual with a greater sense of expression and groundedness. I feel as though I have achieved something.

It's also important to have a sacred space in your home, your safe space. I have a little chapel set up in my dressing room with a bonsai oak to the north, a little silver bell to the east, a copper incense bowl to the south, and a black marble scrying bowl to the west with a little altar in the center surrounded by a circle of 12 candles with 4 colored candles at the appropriate quarters. It's the most organized space in my house, and as I mentioned earlier, ritual helps bring a sense of order to my otherwise disordered life. And the bonsai tree needs regular attention (as well as the few others I have in the room as well...it's kind of a mini-grove) so I am frequently in my sacred space, doing "mundane" things and that regular interaction has an effect as well so that those little mundane things become rituals in themselves.

And if the rituals in the gwersi seem "canned" to you, then as other brothers and sisters here have suggested...write your own...it will feel much more genuine. And remember...the gods and goddesses don't need your rituals...you do.
Yours in the Peace of the Grove,
/|\ Colley y Bara

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Re: I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

Postby ShadowCat » 09 Jul 2015, 09:57

And remember...the gods and goddesses don't need your rituals...you do.
This simple statement really hits home and gets me a bit emotional for some reason :oops:
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the whisper of the wind through the leaves
the songs of one's heart
the callings of the universe

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Re: I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

Postby Fil.F. » 10 Jul 2015, 04:42

Get out of the floor ...

This body or mind feeling about rituals is caused by so many reasons. Perhaps
something wrong or omitted was passed by modern books over casting the circle. And
we have to give attention for the materials that enter on this space, and for the
architecture touchs of that. There are no researchs or alerts today about the deseases
that is possible to affect the human body. We are talking about the undesired "witche's mark"
or the "devil's mark", this mark is a mole on derm or a wart. At the medieval times the church
punished and executed severally the people who have this mark on body. Other sickness can be
related to the contact with the floor like parasitosis, principally who have animals on home.

But the true cause is the use of candles, composed by paraffin, at the floor without candle
supports or the remainder in contact with wood. If you use four candles on the circle's casting
put on four candles supports for it. I wrote a new circle's casting for me based on these arguments
where I use eight candles, two for each geographical direction like a gate to the wind.
Each of them on a candle support composed of metal (tin, iron or aluminn and iron steel etc.)
with 1 meter of hight. The circle with a ray of two or three meters delimited by a twine.
This form a celtic cross.

Over the altar what I call a "Tré" from the gaelic, that meaning "three" for three things - three
candles, two of them with the same hight and the third at the center with the biggest hight.

With this circle something happen under the floor, fortificating the underground and local
area against demons invasion and bad faery attack.
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Re: I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

Postby Green Raven » 10 Jul 2015, 10:01

It’s easy to feel isolated, absurd and meaningless when carrying out words and gestures by rote alone in a hidden alcove or glade. Especially in a movement that is dispersed across the globe, the sense of community, vital to faith, learning and purpose, can be missing.

Has anyone tried setting up informal “virtual groves” for rituals, using web conferencing? Or even downloadable mp4 rituals to join in with at the Full Moon or Wheel of the Year festivals? Connecting with, say, Philip or Damh at significant times would aid memory and learning, perfect cadence and timing, building both kinship and identity.

Just a thought.
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Re: I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

Postby DaRC » 10 Jul 2015, 11:35

Has anyone tried setting up informal “virtual groves” for rituals, using web conferencing? Or even downloadable mp4 rituals to join in with at the Full Moon or Wheel of the Year festivals? Connecting with, say, Philip or Damh at significant times would aid memory and learning, perfect cadence and timing, building both kinship and identity.
I have been thinking about this too, perhaps the use of Google+ Hangouts, but firstly it would need a Virtual seed group.
I'm not sure if people here are keen on the idea? Then there's the issue of arranging a time when people could connect...
http://www.google.com/+/learnmore/hangouts/
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most sweet the sight of the sun;
good is health if one can but keep it,
and to live a life without shame. (Havamal 68)
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Re: I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

Postby Whitemane » 10 Jul 2015, 13:30

The idea of virtual rituals has been floated a few times over the years. I think it has a lot to offer for solitaries and the non-traveling types (like me.) :old: I honestly think it would be massive if we could have a ritual where one of us was at sunrise and another at sunset. :yay:
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Re: I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

Postby DJ Droood » 10 Jul 2015, 13:34

There actually is,or at least there was, an OBOD "cybergrove"...I think they used a program called IRC to do their thing. Not sure how to contact them, if they are still around.
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Re: I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

Postby treegod » 10 Jul 2015, 17:27

I think it was called NOBOD, but it doesn't seem to be active.

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Re: I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

Postby Selene » 10 Jul 2015, 23:08

NOBOD and various offshoots and similar groups were Yahoo! group-based e-mail lists for OBOD members. Some seem to still exist, at least in a rudimentary fashion, and some seem to have gone extinct.

NOBODGrove is apparently at least somewhat active; I haven't tried to join any of their discussions in a long time, but they have (or had) an IRC channel on which they hold/held online rituals. I still get announcements for their weekly Bardic Grove Rituals and monthly Meditations for Global Peace, but I don't know if these are auto-generated or if people still get together. They used to hold online rituals for the seasonal festivals, for which they'd have scripts the members could download and use, but I see none later than 2010.

NOBOD-L has had no activity is a long time, but there were a few posts last fall, so it may be that there are still members who, like I, get e-mails when someone posts to it.

The links to these groups are in a post in OBOD General Discussion; click the link to OBOD Groves and Seedgroups, then in the announcements section, the link that says OBOD Yahoo Groups: On-line Groves and Seedgroups. The fourth post has the links to the various groups; follow the links to apply to any you are interested in, being aware that some (many?) may not work any more.
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Re: I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

Postby skepticskitchen » 11 Jul 2015, 14:59

It would be nice if there was a functioning cyber-grove to have rituals together with. I can't travel and my closest grove is an hour and a half away in Ann Arbor. I may see about arranging transportation with the grove, but it would still be nice to not have to travel. I downloaded mIRC and tried the NOBOD group, but I never saw anybody logged in and gave up after awhile. I still do solitary rituals, it would just be nice to have others to celebrate with.
Yours in the Peace of the Grove,
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Re: I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

Postby DJ Droood » 11 Jul 2015, 15:03

I think if it was to have a chance to work, it would have to tie in with the board or Facebook so people would know about it and could coordinate. Listserve is a bit 2001....
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Re: I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

Postby skepticskitchen » 11 Jul 2015, 18:39

I think it should also be a flash chat application so that some people dont have problems with java security settings. I went to the NOBOD website which has an html java chat applet for several different chat rooms but none of them would load due to java security. That's why I downloaded mIRC and ran the IRC chat as a separate program. Flash chat applications can be tied to and load from the OBOD website directly.
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Re: I feel like a total idiot when it comes to rituals?

Postby Green Raven » 12 Jul 2015, 21:49

I like the look of the Google+ Hangouts’ group video calls – Google would reliably update the software as necessary - but, as was mentioned, time zones may prove an impediment to a single global feed. So time zone-based seed groups or an effort to join a particular feed at an agreed time? It would be the personal quality of sound and vision in the mystically-linked sacred circles that would bond the community. Live feed text is just another email really.

It would make a major festival (Samhuinn / Beltane or Summer / Winter Solstice) very special to be joined by the Chosen Chief or the Pendragon for a joint recitation of the rites as taught in the gwers. If members prefer a more customised event then a little rejigging to insert the live video call into your festival is not too complex. A bit like making time for the Queen’s speech after Xmas lunch at your Nan's :)

It might be necessary to insert a ‘mad minute’ (or two) space so that the ceremony has a gap for everyone to speak their personal prayers, send positive energies, etc, at the same time. Also a general accord to stick to the script at these events for cohesion.
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- Myrddin Wyllt, Hoianau / Greetings (to a Pig)


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