Following Your Path At Work

Gainful employment is a reality for most Druids. This forum is a place to discuss challenges and opportunities facing Druids in the workplace.
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AbhainnLee
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Re: Following Your Path At Work

Postby AbhainnLee » 21 Feb 2011, 04:07

I'm a high school English teacher in Texas, US. Religious material comes up in class often, and I'm pretty open about being pagan (especially when talking about the Romantics), though I am not allowed to discuss exactly what my beliefs are, even if the students ask. Most of my students are very open-minded, and I haven't had any serious problems. I wear a simple pentacle necklace every day, and an amethyst bracelet for tranquility.
"Better to be the river, not the stone in the middle.
Best to be the changing water, not the pebble dragged along.
Cross the sky; cross the water. You are Mercury's daughter,
and the world will envy you your gypsy song."

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snowbud
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Re: Following Your Path At Work

Postby snowbud » 21 Feb 2011, 15:05

Hi all

I'm really glad that I found this thread as I'm having a real dilemma with trying to balance work and druidry.

I follow a similar route to quite a lot of the posts here as I don't openly advertise my beliefs but will happily discuss them if the topic comes up. I'm very new to being a Druid and OBOD so although I know that I have found the right path I am still very new to the rituals etc. As such I don't currently have anything on my desk (or on my person!) that I feel is an anchor to druidry and this is bothering me as I find my work very suffocating and not really enjoyable (it's finance, need I say more?!).

I understand that it's all very personal but if anyone has any suggestions for symbols or similar that I could keep on me or my desk I'd really welcome any advice.

Thanks
Snowbud

P.S. I am not good with plants (I know, I know, VERY distressing for a druid to admit) so a house plant may serve only to plunge me further into a fug!!

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Lily
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Re: Following Your Path At Work

Postby Lily » 21 Feb 2011, 20:45

A rock will do fine, snowbud, or a neckace with something like a bardic symbol, or how about a special cup that you can drink tea from?
bright blessed days, dark sacred nights

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snowbud
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Re: Following Your Path At Work

Postby snowbud » 21 Feb 2011, 20:52

Hi Lily

I really like the cup idea (I'm a water fiend!!), thanks for the inspiration

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White Star
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Re: Following Your Path At Work

Postby White Star » 25 Feb 2011, 17:40

Everyone at work knows what I am and there is more open minded curiosity than anything else. My supervisor affectionally calls me "The Dark Lord." for some reason. :D
I drive trucks so I am not around the office much, but I wear an Awen pendant underneath my shirt. Being out and about means I get to see and be close to the earth in all her moods and beauty and sometimes it is even more breathtaking than others; such as a sunrise over misty fields, that always catches my breath.
I used to have issues regarding my path and the undoubted pollution caused by large heavy vehicles, but we can't all work in a totally enviromentally friendly job, and even Druids have bills to pay, so I am now at peace with that.
Oh yeah....and if I'm blocking your lane on the motorway....unlucky..... :wink:

Blessings
"No one has any right to buy and sell the earth for private gain. By theft and murder, they steal the land; Now everywhere the walls rise up at their command." The Diggers c. 1649

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Aitrus
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Re: Following Your Path At Work

Postby Aitrus » 26 Feb 2011, 00:47

Hi all

I'm really glad that I found this thread as I'm having a real dilemma with trying to balance work and druidry.

I follow a similar route to quite a lot of the posts here as I don't openly advertise my beliefs but will happily discuss them if the topic comes up. I'm very new to being a Druid and OBOD so although I know that I have found the right path I am still very new to the rituals etc. As such I don't currently have anything on my desk (or on my person!) that I feel is an anchor to druidry and this is bothering me as I find my work very suffocating and not really enjoyable (it's finance, need I say more?!).

I understand that it's all very personal but if anyone has any suggestions for symbols or similar that I could keep on me or my desk I'd really welcome any advice.

Thanks
Snowbud

P.S. I am not good with plants (I know, I know, VERY distressing for a druid to admit) so a house plant may serve only to plunge me further into a fug!!
You could shop around until you find an affordable small desktop running water fountain, then decorate it / personalize it by putting stones in/around it from your walks through the woods, keep a plucked flower floating in the pool, put a coin with an animal on it (Canadian Looney, etc) in the bottom of the water resivor, etc. You could also keep a small aquarium, provided your work allows it. Some might not think it's druidic to keep a fish "caged", but I think that providing a fish a safe haven, plenty of food, and friends to swim with is downright druidic.

The water fountain is a project that I'll be doing this summer.
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Re: Following Your Path At Work

Postby Ghostrider » 13 Mar 2011, 03:53

My colleagues know of my beliefs. Some are more 'interested' than others. Mostly, it is left alone, as it doesn't matter what we believe, as long as the work gets done.
The only time my beliefs come up, is when my (Christian) supervisor brings the subject up for discussion, which is fine w/me.

I don't have any altar at work, as we rotate workplaces, but I wear Thor's Hammer and a Drakkar-pendant round my neck. Also, there's a tattoo on my fore-arm which is pretty conspicuous :grin: . I have no need for an altar, as I believe that by living my life in a good way and recognising the little 'miracles' around me, the Gods and me have sufficient repore.

There are many ways to honour your beliefs and incorporate them in 'daily' life. I don't think an altar or any outward displays are necessary. The things that I wear / have which might identify me as a Pagan / Heathen / Druid are for MY ' pleasure', not for confrontation or anything else.
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Dendrias
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Re: Following Your Path At Work

Postby Dendrias » 18 Mar 2011, 18:29

I thought that being a teacher would be a great thing for a druid.
My work is to teach children and young adults to think about what people of ancient times thought and wrote. Latin literature encompasses philosophy, history and myth, and even the youngest ones (year 6) get to know a culture by story and myth. I act as the Hermes to make them understand quite strange thoughts and take a stance to it. Some other recurrent themes are German poems, modern stories, but also the basic understanding of any kind of text. I help my pupils to express their thoughts properly and scrutinise others' thought thoroughly.

Justice and truth are my guidelines. The thing I hate the most is corruption incited by power. I know some colleagues who are treating pupils very rude or let their ego overcome their objectivity. So I make an effort to treat pupils and rate their accomplishments by pure justice. But I won't forget that, as a human, I have a narrow perspective. So, well-meaning is always a part of my work. I'm always willed to take a disadvantage in order to act as I told I would.

I'm judge and peacemaker. When I see someone dropping litter - he has to take the consequences; when two are having a fight - they have to solve their problems (or I will); when two are having an argument - I'm trying to help them understand each other.

Most enjoyable is the work with the children and young adults; the "trying to educate" part. (I know, some of the American guys will explode in horror, but yes, my task is to educate children in team with the parents.) I make an effort in living my ideals and values: I apologise as soon as I notice that I made a mistake, I'm fully engaged in my message (the importance of myth, for example), stand to scrutiny, have humour when necessary and pay full respect to all my pupils (to the odd ones as well), even if they are cheating, treating someone badly or lying in my face - punishment is not disrespect. I try to help them become a full member of society, not by pushing them, but by supporting their finding a path into it. Of course, I accept the borders they are setting up against me, as well.

So, I think I'm following my path at work. As it doesn't include rituals (yet), altars, gods and the like, it's nothing that could cause offense. I'm wearing a triskele under my shirt. But that's it. My "best friend" is a RE teacher and we talk about religion, spirituality, philosophy and the weather a lot, but I don't even feel the need to say things like "I'm lurking in a druid forum". I don't pretend to be a good christian either.
I still don't know what would happen, when I wanted to have the role of "agnostic-and-or-paganlike sort-of-druid counsellor" for the pupils with affinity to pagan metal. (I met one the other day. He didn't know the word "pagan", nor did he really know what was meant by it. That was funny!) I think, although it's my wife who is working in piet-cong-city, that the parents and/or administration wouldn't be very pleased to have someone with such a background teaching their children. But I'm not sure and don't want to test it.

P.S. I forgot a druidic (as far as I understand it) aspect of being a teacher that is quite important for me: I have been a quite shy guy, so to say. "Leadership" and pointing out my opinion in groups has never been my thing. But, hell, did I improve on a personal level! I have been gentle up to the point of being a masochist. I really have come around, now. Being a teacher is an improvement on a personal level. It can really be body-building for mind and personality.
Of course, I have to scrutinise my judgment, my methods, my actions, my reactions, my goals, my knowledge and opinion, my material and my motivation. I have to be my own judge and act on it. That's hard to do, but improves your view on yourself a lot. So, personal growth is a big part of being a teacher ... and personal growth is what "my path" is aiming at.

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Re: Following Your Path At Work

Postby forest_dweller » 17 Apr 2011, 21:09

I work in secondary education and have shared an office with two christians , one is studying to be a vicar . we have great conversations and mutual respect for each others calling, nearly all members of staff are aware that i'm a Druid (pagan) including the headteacher as I talk openly about the camps, festivals, friends and grove I belong to.
they are also aware that I attend shamanic drumming in the lsle of sheppey monthy and as it turns out there is a witch (wiccan) in the school next door according to the community police officer :)
we have met and she is also out of the cupboard in her place of work. :hiya:
I was also approached by the head of RE when a group of girls wanted to write about pagan beliefs , my colleague suggested they requested an interview with a member of staff who was know to be a pagan. he asked me if i was ok with this before directing them to me.
he was very impressed with their report , i will not hide who i am or what i believe as to hide it only encourages ignorance within the general community.

I am seen most mornings within the school grounds greeting the morning sun , smelling the rain before it arrives , listening to the breeze as it moves between the school buildings or talking to the wildlife that lives in and around the school.

miss is a cool hippy and excepted by the students and staff alike :curtsey:
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Re: Following Your Path At Work

Postby MiriamSPia » 04 Jun 2011, 18:07

I work in secondary education and have shared an office with two christians , one is studying to be a vicar . we have great conversations and mutual respect for each others calling, nearly all members of staff are aware that i'm a Druid (pagan) including the headteacher as I talk openly about the camps, festivals, friends and grove I belong to.
they are also aware that I attend shamanic drumming in the lsle of sheppey monthy and as it turns out there is a witch (wiccan) in the school next door according to the community police officer :)
we have met and she is also out of the cupboard in her place of work. :hiya:
I was also approached by the head of RE when a group of girls wanted to write about pagan beliefs , my colleague suggested they requested an interview with a member of staff who was know to be a pagan. he asked me if i was ok with this before directing them to me.
he was very impressed with their report , i will not hide who i am or what i believe as to hide it only encourages ignorance within the general community.

I am seen most mornings within the school grounds greeting the morning sun , smelling the rain before it arrives , listening to the breeze as it moves between the school buildings or talking to the wildlife that lives in and around the school.

miss is a cool hippy and excepted by the students and staff alike :curtsey:

:old: :innocent: :thinking: :duck: LOL, I work from home as a writer. A lot of the time it doesn't matter, but in truth I do believe Jesus Christ was a Messiah and that I am "saved" thanks to him, but I have also done goddess rites. Politically, my preference is god & goddess both, for balance of energy and power, with neither truly dominant over the other. Each has their rightful place. As a woman, its nice to work with goddess energy after all the male centered stuff, but last time I read The Bible it turned out that Jesus Christ wasn't anti-woman in belief, teachings or politics although I had been told that RC church especially and Christianity are both "sexist" against women. :( So, at work, as a writer, I like spiritual writing and I will enthusiastically write for Christians or pagans. I got to edit for a Muslim a few years ago and viewed it as "getting to work for God". So, it does make me uncomfortable at times - like a fence-sitter, but that's really what I'm like. I wrote 40 articles on witchraft this year - back in the Winter, and am halfway through the Ovate grade with OBOD, and took Communion from Lutherans the week before Easter this year, and have been listening to Buddhists for months. However, if you click on Unitarian Universalist, the general answer you will get is: This is viewed as acceptable. :boggle: So, that's my work. I guess I"m telling you that because I know that some Christians and some pagans will just scream "Hypocrite!" and "Fence sitter" whereas others will see what's going on.

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Re: Following Your Path At Work

Postby whitehorse » 04 Jun 2011, 21:42

I work as a lawyer in a large insurance company. After 10 years I've been confident enough this year ('that I could get away with it') to create a 'mini altar' type installation consisting bronze cast 'mortar' - that looks like a very small cauldron, also some of my favourite stones and another small item made of copper ( that I won't attempt to explain) that are special to me. Above this I've put up a splendid Cernunnos picture mini poster (a piece of artwork by Gordon Napier). When asked by senior colleagues (who have decorated their desks with their personal pictures and momentos) I explain that it is my 'celtic art' and I don't attribute any mystical significance' though to sympathetic colleagues I am a little more open.

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Re: Following Your Path At Work

Postby rabenfrau » 05 Jun 2011, 13:05

Hi everyone,

I work in a microbiological lab, so it is not easy for me to "show" my beliefs with pendants or such stuff, cause such things aren't allowed at all in laboratories. Just a security thing. An altar is also not possible, so one had personal things there. But inside the door of my locker there are some symbols. ;)
But people there now who and how I am, some of them are really interested, some of them accepting it and that's it. I also had colleagues which are visiting me at home (I give to some of them reiki regulary), and everyone who visits my flat first asks me out, cause there are things which make them always wonder (altar, books, decoration stuff, you know).
I don't have to tell everyone about me and my faith, so it's ok if there are people at work who don't know. YThey don't have to know all about me. ;)

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Re: Following Your Path At Work

Postby djinn » 20 Jun 2011, 22:35

I my workplace, I merely shared some generic things and interests that the others could relate to or think about without going eek. Mostly, I kept my beliefs to myself, how I perceive the world is just for my close and loved ones to know.

For my path, I keep in check with the seasons with a pretty photograph on my computer-desktop of whatever meadow, flowerfield, lake, river or hillside in the world, so that looking at my computer could be like looking out of the window and getting in touch with something beautiful that is there to see in that time of year. During the 8 festivals some special image and celebratory lights on my computer-desktop, and at those days a subtle choice in colour in my clothes, that is not too 'out of touch' with the direct working environment though. And I wear a small stone around my neck at the days the especially stressing and scheming managers or coworkers happen to be there. It keeps me grounded and catches whatever vibes they radiate to me. O yes, and I put some plants in the office space.
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Re: Following Your Path At Work

Postby DarcArchona » 07 Jul 2011, 04:22

well just got the fun 'you are going to hell because you are a satan worshipper and not Christian' rant at work today. I must say it's a great way to come back to work after being off for 5 days...

some older lady in another office in my building apparently noticed my thor's hammer pendant I wear everyday out in the open and decided she needed to speak up about it, I'm just glad her supervisor was right there because he stopped her and even included me on the email sending to Human Resources about his employee's behavior. Sadly enough, nothing will really happen other than a slap on the wrist and maybe she'll have to take some classes to fix her issue.

Hope everyone else's lives are going better than that!

~DarcArchona / Brian
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Re: Following Your Path At Work

Postby Asch » 08 Jul 2011, 14:44

Ack, that sucks. When I came out as a Pagan, one of my oldest friend's mothers tried to lecture me on religion etc from my deceased mother's perspective. When I politely but firmly request that she A. Debate from her own experiences and perspective and leave my mother out of it and B. Actually respect me in her responses, I was summarily dropped by her daughter (whom I'd known since I was four) and received a barrage of foul language and insults on a public blog I keep.

I wasn't angry or even hurt so much as profoundly and deeply disapointed and sad that I'd waste such time on someone that would treat me like. In the end, it's for the best I think, I just wish it had ended more positively.

I'm glad that the bigotted woman's supervisor was there and you're being included in the loop regarding HR. Best of luck now and in future!

Stay classy folks. ;)

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Re: Following Your Path At Work

Postby Willowen » 04 Aug 2011, 04:10

I work in a library and live in a very conservative community. Some of my colleagues know of my beliefs but on the average I keep fairly quiet about it because it was hard enough for these people to accept me being a "biker chick" with tattoos. Tattoos are kept covered but I do like to wear my Bardic pendant as well as my Ceridwen pendant. Anything more than that would not be accepted.
Still my work with OBOD has really inspired me to keep going with my senior outreach program. Especially after I was told at work that I would never be able to achieve my goal. I now have an outreach program where I deliver books to the "long term care center" and the "assisted living center." :D
"The Way itself is a strengthening of spirit, a growing closer to the balance that governs the world. Progress is slow along the Way, but every step of the journey is like a note in the oldest tune of all. When you have the tune complete, you complete yourself." from Moonheart by Charles De Lint

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Re: Following Your Path At Work

Postby Morgan2010 » 05 Sep 2011, 18:08

I haven't been on here for a long time and this was the first thread that caught my eye.

I had an amusing conversation in work the other day. I just started a new contract and we're spending a lot of time twiddling our thumbs waiting for work to come in from the client. This has naturally lead to people chatting a lot more than normal and religion came up in discussion as 2 of the people I was talking to had just had days off for the end of Ramadan. We had quite a long and polite conversation about various people's beliefs and how their families would feel if the married someone of a different faith. After a while someone asked me about my religious beliefs and (as I'd been asked a direct question) I said I was a Druid (not much point going into whole Bard, Ovate and Druid explanation). I was quite shocked by the reaction I got off one person (who was a Catholic) who said "I'm disgusted that you said that I'm offended that you call it a religion" I tried to explain but he just went on a rant and I ended up near enough laughing in his face.

Good job I'm difficult to offend.
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Re: Following Your Path At Work

Postby lenabear » 08 Sep 2011, 23:43

My work is kind of what brought me to druidry. I work as a nurse providing in home care for hospice patients, and the daily exposure to the sacred energy around life's end was what pushed me to seek a path that would respect and incorporate the natural rhythms of life. I have a few work friends who I can discuss the more pagan aspects of my beliefs with, but really most of the people I work with have a deep understanding and respect for life. I don't keep any pagan articles on my desk, but I do have a goddess hanging from my rear view mirror(I spend a lot of time in the car!). My work grounds me in something that is sacred every day, and I'm very grateful for it.

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Re: Following Your Path At Work

Postby Nova Gladius » 10 Sep 2011, 03:03

I work as an apprentice florist and I only have one coworker: my boss, the florist. We specialise in functions such as weddings and don't carry many potted plants in store, but my boss made a comment today about me "communing with the plants" because I put so much care and dedication into what little soil-dwelling flowers we have, HA. In terms of my beliefs, I'm not "out" at work because my boss and I don't often discuss things on a personal level and it's just never come up. If she were to ask I wouldn't skirt around the topic, but I honestly don't think it will ever become necessary to talk about. I don't have a desk or a workstation to display anything related to my beliefs and any pendants I wear are safely tucked away so they don't get in the way of my work.

That said, I enjoyed reading this thread and the experiences some of you have had in your workplaces!
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Re: Following Your Path At Work

Postby naturewalker » 20 Sep 2011, 01:07

Like ShadowWeaver, I carry a hemetite stone in my pocket for grounding, I wear various necklaces under my shirt. I have a couple of things at my desk, a living bamboo, and a water fountain to help keep me grounded. A couple of people at my work know I'm a pagan, but it's not something I get hung up about. If someone asks, I'll share with them.

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