Druidry in modern politics

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Blackledge
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Druidry in modern politics

Postby Blackledge » 10 Jan 2015, 21:20

Evening all. Before I came to discover Druidry and accept it as my life path, I often participated in local politics and followed national politics very closely. I still take an active interest because I think it's important but have been increasingly turned off by it all, and would rather take time for quiet personal contemplation and visiting my favourite places in nature. I'm feeling more often that society is something that is now happening without me as I am more frequently removing myself from the constant bustle of modern life.
I wondered if I am alone in this. I would love to know if you take an interest in politics or even get involved. Do you feel there is a political party which in some way represents the shared values that we Druids hold? As a UK citizen it might seem obvious to suggest the Green Party but I'm not convinced. Is this topic of conversation valuable or is it a distraction from what's really important on the planet?
Please share :)

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Re: Druidry in modern politics

Postby DJ Droood » 10 Jan 2015, 21:47

Evening all. Before I came to discover Druidry and accept it as my life path, I often participated in local politics and followed national politics very closely. I still take an active interest because I think it's important but have been increasingly turned off by it all, and would rather take time for quiet personal contemplation and visiting my favourite places in nature. I'm feeling more often that society is something that is now happening without me as I am more frequently removing myself from the constant bustle of modern life.
I wondered if I am alone in this. I would love to know if you take an interest in politics or even get involved. Do you feel there is a political party which in some way represents the shared values that we Druids hold? As a UK citizen it might seem obvious to suggest the Green Party but I'm not convinced. Is this topic of conversation valuable or is it a distraction from what's really important on the planet?
Please share :)

I just joined a centre-left party in my country, as it is an election year and I am quite anxious to see the regressives in power ousted. I may volunteer some time, just to experience the process. I tend to be fairly cynical about the possibilities for real change, but you have to work with what you have, I guess. The Greens in my country would probably be the best fit for the average Druid, but they don't really stand much of a chance, so I am supporting a more traditional liberal/democratic socialist-type party.
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Re: Druidry in modern politics

Postby Sciethe » 10 Jan 2015, 22:11

My feeling (and practice) is that political parties cannot offer the package I want. Therefore instead of joining them I am active with pressure groups in the areas that I care about. Then all political parties have to take me into account, at least to the extent that I/we are successful. It's a more focussed form of caring for our world, and easier to weave into Druidic practice too.
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Re: Druidry in modern politics

Postby Whitemane » 10 Jan 2015, 23:22

Activism is encouraged by OBOD. I would agree that working with pressure groups is likely to be more effective than supporting an outsider party with little chance of success at the polls.

However, if you think a green/environmental party is in with a chance, do everything you can for them.
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Re: Druidry in modern politics

Postby elementalheart » 11 Jan 2015, 16:56

I can identify with what you say about feeling increasingly turned off by society and also removed myself from it to a large extent. There was nothing in politics that I could believe or trust, and no party any better than another in fulfilling election promises.

What changed for me was the referendum on independence last year. Instead of party politics I (and some friends) discussed what we might want of leaders in a potential newly independent Scotland and like thousands across our nation we began to engage in thinking and talking about what a nation might be if taken out of a historical straitjacket of centuries of tradition and 'how things have always been done' and went back to the drawing board with concepts and principles.

While the vote wasn't for separation, the process was incredibly healthy and invigorating to experience. My guess is that politics in Scotland will be far less a matter of apathy and that the electorate (whatever their former political allegiance or lack thereof) will be listening, asking questions and making decisions on a whole new level in the UK elections next year, aswell as the Scottish elections that follow. The essential difference is the 'conversation' amongst communities rather than the 'pick the best of a bad bunch if you can be bothered' voting practice.

I'm not sure how I will vote in either election, but I will be basing my choice on what they offer that is positive, and walk away from any that campaign based on being 'not like them' or 'better without those folk' or in any way negatively directed against the rest be it other parties, candidates, social groups or nations. I will reject any kind of tactical voting and vote for an independent or a smaller party if they offer something I believe in, whether they have a hope of winning or not. Enough people do that and the independents and small parties gain power and things change.
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Re: Druidry in modern politics

Postby treegod » 11 Jan 2015, 19:55

The whole democratic thing from my view is that of neutralising the political extremes: put all the fascists, communists, liberals, conservatives, capitalists, socialists, environmentalists, etc-ists, into the same political system and they'll not bother us too much; they'll be too busy "running" things and arguing with each other. This doesn't make the world a "better place" but gives many people relative freedom and security to do just that in their own lives.

So, as long as I live in a relatively stable, secure and free "democractic" (neutralised) society, then I can live my life with little interference, and if I have that then I have more opportunity to change things for the better, starting with my own life. Voting in a booth comes but once in a while, voting with my feet is a daily practice!

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Re: Druidry in modern politics

Postby DaRC » 12 Jan 2015, 13:48

they'll be too busy "running" things and arguing with each other.
Or managing the facade, increasingly globalisation makes the idea of government control and nation states a bit irrelevent, I think. When large global corporates can play nation states off against each other it questions who is the puppet and who is the puppeteer.
I keep hearing politicians say they manage the economy but they seem largely powerless to control either the boom or the bust cycle - they take the credit (and stay in power during the boom) and then aim to vacate the chair (for some profitable global corporation) when the bust hits whilst, hopefully, letting their political opponent take the blame.
Or am I just too cynical on a grey mizzly Monday in January? 8-)
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Re: Druidry in modern politics

Postby treegod » 13 Jan 2015, 09:35

they'll be too busy "running" things and arguing with each other.
Or managing the facade,
Exactly what I meant. :-)
When we vote we vote for the face that power has, meanwhile the hands of power are out of our hands (unless we have lots of dough). :roll:
increasingly globalisation makes the idea of government control and nation states a bit irrelevent, I think. When large global corporates can play nation states off against each other it questions who is the puppet and who is the puppeteer.
For which I'm glad to see there are pressure groups that have influence from outside the political system, which I feel offers some balance. And we still have the freedom not to tie our lifestyles (too much) to the global economy. That's a bit harder because the most common and convenient thing is what the global economy offers, but it's a work in progress.
Or am I just too cynical on a grey mizzly Monday in January? 8-)
You sound quite reasonable to me. Unless I'm cynical, too. :wink:

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Re: Druidry in modern politics

Postby Reuils » 13 Jan 2015, 11:55

Over years of watching politicians (in several countries) they have one common denominator.......they are all self serving, liars and cheats .Having realised this ,they never disappoint me ,as they always reach my expectations of them ! Sad but true

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Re: Druidry in modern politics

Postby Davin Raincloud » 13 Jan 2015, 12:44

I've been conscious of politics and modern history from a young age. A lot younger than my peers. In fact I didn't know anyone of an opinion of politics until they were in their late 20s. So I had a good 15 years headstart on learning the ways of the political world (still learning).

Because I am conscious, I'm under no illusion that all parties are "equally disappointing". The conservatives are pretty much the enemy of anyone who is not over 50, white and male.

If you don't get that, you're either not paying attention, or you have severe privilege that you enjoy and like to protect. Sure, there are some complexities, some shades of grey, but rhetoric at the end of the day must be based on some truth.

What's happening in Australia right now is extremely shocking and jarring. If people think that is okay, you need to seriously pull your head in.

[Edit: When I wrote this yesterday I was fired up and pretty stressed. I didn't mean to hurt anyone with words....]

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Re: Druidry in modern politics

Postby illion » 17 Jan 2015, 09:16

I voted for the Green Party at the last election. They were small, had no chance of winning or getting any influence at all, but I came to the conclusion that I could not vote for any of the other parties and feel happy with myself at the same time. Environment and climate change are important for me, and none of the parties in Norway really stand up for those things. A couple of them say they do, but when they get the chance to collaborate with the bigger parties they sell their environmental friendly initiatives immediately. All except for the Greens. They stand their ground. And by being so tough and clear, more people than expected voted for them, and now they have a tiny little influence on the government and can push them a little bit, and I hope that they will slowly grow bigger and bigger for each election.

I also like to get engaged in activism, but I've been more into working in cases where municipal administration is breaking the law to exploit Nature. I've been engaged in saving salamanders from roadbuilding, and won :yay: I've been working on saving arable land from road building, and won :yay: After that I was asked to join a local political party (not the greens, they are not established in my municipality) but I said no. I don't want to spread my energy on stuff I'm not interested in. I want to work with Nature and Law, and that is it. I don't want my time to be taken away on discussing art and old people and parking lots. Not that those things aren't important. They truly are, but they are not my cup of tea. My cup of tea is Nature. That is what I can. I was also asked to join the board of inhabitants in the area we live in (don't know what it's called in English) but I turned the offer down for the same reasons. I don't want to spend my leisure time arguing with aunt Marhta because her mailbox has tilted, getting phone calls every day, and being frustrated. I want to work with Nature.

I get a little sad when I hear people say that, of course this is a good thing to work for, but I'm afraid it is nothing you and I could do about it without even have tried. Anyhow, isn't it important that the people in charge at least know that what they do is not a popular thing to do. In local cases it is easier to actually meet the people in charge, be a little annoying, but stay factual. Most people hate conflicts, they want their jobs to run as smoothly as they can, and they already have a lot to do. Keep pushing them until they make mistakes. They will in the end.

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Re: Druidry in modern politics

Postby Davin Raincloud » 20 Jan 2015, 10:32

Fun fact: The Tasmanian Greens were the first Green party anywhere in the world.

The Greens have been doing pretty good in Australia the last few years. They recently gained seats in my state recently for the first time in history.

In Australia we have a preference system that can help balance things.

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Re: Druidry in modern politics

Postby DaRC » 21 Jan 2015, 13:22

The Greens here in the UK seem to have mixed Green with far left socialism which will make them unelectable.
I suspect that some of their policies will be counter-productive too BUT if they push the other parties into becoming more green then that is a good thing.
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Re: Druidry in modern politics

Postby Green Raven » 22 Jan 2015, 16:26

Yes, they were packed to the gills with anarchists - pleasant, well-meaning folk with deeply held convictions - when I was a member of the Ecology Party back in the early Eighties. I left as I prefered a more pragmatic approach. Then Petra Kelly (RIP) came along and fired up the whole movement. The parties around Europe then became a bit more ship-shape and electable.

Greenpeace and the Friends of the Earth also blew a cold wind across the established parties and made them blink. The Big Three (UK) are all about perception and obscuring the inexorable trundle of the status quo. It's only when the electorate begin hammering on their doors that they start to dance. There is very little being said now that wasn't being said in the Seventies, except now the science is is further along and better targeted.

So what is a druid to do? Well, the faith is unusually adept at wordsmithing and coherent argument. Most are deeply passionate and well-informed about this fragile sphere. The powers and big business haven't shut down the internet yet. A few soundbites and submissions of lyrics to the popular go a long way in the modern world.
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Re: Druidry in modern politics

Postby DJ Droood » 23 Jan 2015, 01:49

Yes, they were packed to the gills with anarchists - pleasant, well-meaning folk with deeply held convictions - when I was a member of the Ecology Party back in the early Eighties.
Being an anarchist is a terribly romantic thing to be when you are 20, rolling your own cigarettes, going to punk shows....old age and mortgages sort of beat it out of you, though.
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Re: Druidry in modern politics

Postby Sciethe » 23 Jan 2015, 10:44

Yes, they were packed to the gills with anarchists - pleasant, well-meaning folk with deeply held convictions - when I was a member of the Ecology Party back in the early Eighties.
Being an anarchist is a terribly romantic thing to be when you are 20, rolling your own cigarettes, going to punk shows....old age and mortgages sort of beat it out of you, though.
So true. But then you turn into an individual instead, which is maybe no bad thing. :grin:
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Re: Druidry in modern politics

Postby Hereward » 15 Aug 2015, 18:33

On this forum and plenty of others, there's always a lot of talk about how bad the government, this party or that party is. I'd like to get past all that and talk about what it is we or the general public actually WANT. As long as we wait for politicians to fill that in for us, wherever we live, we are unlikely to get what we want.

Although I'm only a newbie here I would like to suggest that (following Druidic principles) we first find out what it is that we do want in terms of how our countries are run. Then we can envision it and potentially bring it into existence. I would love to hear your ideas.

I shall be so bold as to kick it off with something which is probably not very controversial on this forum:

I would like to see a world where everyone has due respect for Nature and every gift She bestows upon us. What form would that take? Probably it starts with education.

Anyone else?
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Re: Druidry in modern politics

Postby Whitemane » 15 Aug 2015, 22:38

There is a conflict between what people want, what they need, and what can actually be done in a sustainable way. If people don't have basic needs met, they're not going to be interested in being told what they can't do. When they have plenty, people are not interested in being told they can have less.

I think the need is to make sure that people have basic needs met, then we can educate them, because there are more of the needy, we can shift the centre of mass of the discussion.
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Re: Druidry in modern politics

Postby Davin Raincloud » 16 Aug 2015, 02:43

A few years back I tried to be 'Christian' and be in online communities.

Dominated by Americans who were Republicans.

But they didn't just stop with choosing to have those politics, most insisted that I had to adopt the politics of the far right wing of America, which was ignorant and racist, if I was to be a 'true christian'.

It was ultimately the final nail in the coffin of my Christian experiment.

So I think it is better that we are all free to choose our politics, instead of insisting a True Druid does such and such.

Read "Journeys of the Soul - The Life & Legacy of a Druid Chief" by Philip Carr-Gomm to see just how left wing Ross Nichols was. Socialist, Vegertarian etc. http://shop.druidry.org/Journeys-of-the-Soul.html

But I dare say, perhaps Ross' politics is what formed the spirit of OBOD today?

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Re: Druidry in modern politics

Postby Hereward » 16 Aug 2015, 10:05

I think that's a very important point and I'm certainly not interested in writing some kind of manifesto, but I do think it is worthwhile discussing where druidry is with respect to politics and how it can motivate a druid to develop his or her own political opinions.
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