YOUR APPROACH TO DRUIDRY

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Generally, and at the moment I relate to Druidry as

My religion
16
10%
A spiritual and philosophical approach as described below
117
72%
A magical discipline/path as described below
29
18%
 
Total votes: 162

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Drui na Samhna
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Post by Drui na Samhna » 30 Oct 2004, 22:21

I consider O.B.O.D. to be a magical order or mystery school, a part of the "Great White Brotherhood" which might include Rosicrucians, Theosophists, Freemasons, and many others groups as well. I believe O.B.O.D. does have a valid initiatic current (through A.D.U.B., etc.) which sometimes I feel is overlooked as the Order has evolved from a Revivalist/Fraternal/Mesopagan order into a more modern Neopagan one. I miss some of the "traditional elements" that have been replaced by more Celtic ones (the Qabalistic Archangels and the Saints versus the elemental animal powers), but I rejoice in the fact that there is no "dogma" within the Order to prevent me from keeping (or adding in) elements from the Revival period. For the record, my "religion" is Spiritualism, but I consider myself an initiate in a Druid order (just as a Christian might belong to a Masonic order). I believe that Druidry can also be a philosophy or a religion, but that does not happen to be my relationship with Druidry.

James
Last edited by Drui na Samhna on 31 Oct 2004, 01:22, edited 2 times in total.
Drui na Samhna /|\
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Seeker
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Post by Seeker » 30 Oct 2004, 23:28

I also voted for number two as the most appropriate statement reflecting my current approach to druidry though I firmly believe that number three plays an important part. Since I am relatively new to the study and am enrolled in the bardic course, I can only state that after many years in Catholicism, druidry has re-kindled a fire in me that was long ago burned out. After traveling this world (this lifetime) for close to fifty years, I have been struck to how callous many religions approach both their relations to "non-belivers" and how close-minded they have remained to what is all around them. Makes me appreciate all the more OBOD's approach to no required dogma.

At least with OBOD, I have found both a philosophy to live by and a group of individuals who are open to discussions regarding the existence of deity/God/Goddess, etc. Not to mention the magic and mystery that exists in everything around us. I wish more people remained open to what our ancestors believed in as opposed to forgetting the past. They are missing the best part of living...
"Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the men of old; seek what they sought."
Matsuo Basho

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Ruthie
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Post by Ruthie » 31 Oct 2004, 00:47

Grrr, Philip!
You only allowed one choice! Grrr, again!!! :lol:
I picked Magical/Shamanic because that is where I am now, but before I came onto this aspect, I would have chosen philosophy/spirituality.
I see druidry for me as a way to connect myself intimately with the outer world(s), and as I delve deeper into that connection, I see the energy is not uni-directional. So I came to Druidry as a philosophical approach and a spirituality, but am now experiencing a more magickal/shamanic side of it as I enter into "conversation" with the Universe. Not so much as beginning something, but realising that as part of it, I am and have always been an active participant in it. What I realised, was that it was possible to be a participant with purpose, and that purpose could be communicated outward, and have rippling effect on the Universe. That is the Magick.
I hope I have answered your question. Besides these polls being good for your research, I'd like to say they are also fun and informative, and they help us to get to know each other's views on things we sometimes don't mention out of politeness or discretion, or, sadly, fear of persecution.
So Thanks for asking! I have made a new friend already out of your polls, and look forward to having many more!
Bright Blessings,
:-D

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Art
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Post by Art » 31 Oct 2004, 09:29

This is an interesting thread. I too voted for #2 however I’m not sure that it’s necessarily exclusive of the other two choices. We can debate the location of a boundary between spiritual philosophy and religion but that would entail coming to a common definition of religion. I tend to think or religion in communal terms which would lead one to the assumption that whenever two people holding shared spiritual beliefs get together, the union constitutes a religion. By the same token, religions and spiritual philosophies without exception reveal transpersonal experiences that would fall lightly into the realm of magic.

I would be hesitant to say that Druidry was a religion but I would say that it could well be an expression of a root source of religious elucidation. For me that interpretation consists of a concept that says there is a golden thread of truth woven through all of the world’s religions, spiritual philosophies and even secular philosophies. While the whole cloth of any religion may be colored by layers of dogma, the golden thread is still there and as a Druid I can be comfortable in just about anybody’s pew, pulpit, grove, circle, temple or synagogue…even if I tend to smirk at some of the rhetoric. However the home base of my personal “religious” practice is founded in the rites, philosophy and practices associated with Druidry.

So while I voted one way I think the three choices are very closely integrated and it takes some mental gymnastics to define where one ends and the other begins

Art

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Post by Stohornugle » 31 Oct 2004, 13:56

I voted for #3 because this is most relevent to me at this time as I am travelling slowly along a Shamanic path. However #2 is also important to me as some of the philosophies and spiritual aspects of druidry enhance my daily life, which has always had a Pagan- Nature focus.
Religion is something I would run a mile from.



In Peace Shapara

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Post by Fae » 31 Oct 2004, 15:59

Hi Phillip:

I voted number 2, I require no outside dogma, I have my own internal dogma.

I also believe the magic is in the turning of the wheel, I observe it each and every day.
Peace from the branches of the Mighty Oak
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Post by Lily » 31 Oct 2004, 21:50

Hmm. If I could resolve my agnosticism I would consider it my religion, but until then it will be mainly my spirituality and philosophy.

that should do it, ambiguous enough for a druid.... :)
bright blessed days, dark sacred nights

Lily


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Post by Kernos » 01 Nov 2004, 02:38

I certainly approach Druidry as a spiritual and philosophical approach to life and as a way to search for answers to the Great Questions.

I view religions more as political systems which defines a spiritual path for others. I feel that many humans and perhaps even cultures have outgrown the need to have their spiritual path defined for them by others.

I don't know what magic is, though I am searching for an answer that resonates with my spiritual and philosophical life.

Kernos
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Post by Ravensdaughter » 01 Nov 2004, 02:41

:ravens: :wolf: :yew:

Hello, Philip -

Hmmm....well, to be perfectly honest, I see Druidry as a philosophy, a spiritual path AND a Path of magic and shamanism. For me, I cannot separate those things.

For example, I spend a part of every day in the hollow of a Yew tree, itself (along with everything else) a part of the great MotherTree. I walk her branches into other realities. This is both literal and not. I actually do experience talking with Beings who usually don't live in my part of the universe. And when I walk in some of those worlds I change shape and experience my being from a different perspective.

At the same time, it is a philosophy - one that encourages me to accept my own, innate sense that the world is far more alive and conscious than most people realize. This provides a powerful set of guidelines about how I walk the earth, how I treat all of my relations and what kinds of ethical standards I have.

And it is a spiritual path, in that it helps me recognize my connection with the underlying Reality out of which all of everything comes.

So, you see, since I can only choose one thing to vote for, I am having a bit of a time trying to decide what that one thing would be.

Peace and Bright Blessings,
Samantha Ravensdaughter

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Post by Crow » 01 Nov 2004, 02:42

This is interesting because I've been debating this very issue within myself. Druidry has the "feel" of a religion, and so for a time I was inclined to call it one.

But one of the very things that makes it attractive to me -- the freedom of choice with regard to deity -- now makes Druidry seem a little too "loosey-goosey" to be a religion, at least in my mind. To me, a religion is characterized by a group of people who unite and proclaim some commonality about the god they worship, and the methods by which they do so.

In Druidry, individuality is encouraged, and no one is forced to do things with which they are uncomfortable. While people following a druidic path may share many similar views, their concepts of deity can be all over the map. For this reason, I chose #2, a philosophy, though I reserve the right to change my mind at any time!

:raven:
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Post by Brigantiorum Jihana » 01 Nov 2004, 03:09

I voted for #2 because I could not vote for #1 AND #2 and had to make a choice. Deep down Druidry is my religion, with a leaning towards the feminine side of Deity; however, because I would like very much to progress through the bardic, ovatic and druidic levels, with the changes in outlook that they must necessarily bring, I decided to play it "safe" and declare it as a spiritual philosophy. Having written down the words "spiritual philosophy" I feel that they fit nicely. Hence, really my answer is a combination of #1 and #2.

Peace...

Jihana

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Post by Kaya-Nita » 01 Nov 2004, 03:20

i am of the Red Road yet too of Druidry i have combined both into one path and one with out the other just does not seem to be right for me. It would be like trying to walk with only one leg or carry on a conversation with out words.
Both have made me much more complete as a Spiritual being or rather my Spirituality is now as a whole. Both work hand in hand the Pipe Prayers is for speaking to the Powers to be and Druidy helps structure the ritual of the Pipe Prayers. Light and Body still ground and help clear the mind.
But alone it would be like Ying with out Yang it does not seem to work that way for me. so both now have rooted themselves into my life...well i shouldn't say now they have. For they were there my whole life, i just was never aware of it till recently in the past two years. but they have given me a strenght i would have never had before.
So i am so totaly greatful to the "Creator, Great Mother Earth, The Great Spirits of the Four Directions, Godds and Goddesses" all have played a valuable part of my life and will continue to till it is my turn to sail to the Summerlands.

Mee-gwitch Philip :drum: :brnbear: :awen:

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Post by Alferian » 01 Nov 2004, 05:58

Dear Philip and all,

I voted for #2 but would perhaps have chosen "All of the Above" if I could. I try to avoid the term "religion" and yet certainly Druidry has come to occupy the place in my life that most people would consider the place of a religion. I know it's not a test: There's no "correct" answer, but I think that the unique thing about Druidry is that it does offer all three of these things.

Blessings,

Alferian

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poll

Post by Wren MacDonald » 01 Nov 2004, 09:36

I chose "my religion" but I really would like there to be a fourth option... "all of the above." ^_^

I used to consider myself a Christian-Druid but found as time went on that the Christian path was not the right one for me and now I'm entirely pagan. I also had quite a few bad experiences with some fundamentalists which sadly I think have made me a little guarded. And yet at other times I'm totally open and even blunt about it. Go figure.

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Post by DaRC » 01 Nov 2004, 12:54

Ahh Philip,
once again like herded cats we are ;-) :grin:
My views are similar to many people above. My primary reason to be a member of OBOD is the spiritual / philosophical approach that it offers.
However, like many here, Druidry does colour, influence and often direct any religious or magical / shamanic work.
So if I had to pigeonhole myself it would be as an Asatru Druid. Unfortunately Asatru has too many neo-nazi association so I just use the Druidry as that is the tap-root for all three shoots (hmmm a bit like Yggdrasil). As a person I tend towards the Philosophical, more than the Religious or Magical so my view reflects my personality as well.

The religious context for Druidry means that I work with the Norse / Anglo-Saxon Pantheon.
Within the magical / shamanic side I work within a 'Northern Tribes' structure - by Northern Tribes I regard the Celt, Teutonic, Finno-Ugric, Slavic and other Northern/Western European peoples as having a long, mutually interdependent culture. In many ways the Northern Tribes are one people separated by language.
To digress, I think that is where Tolkien tapped into such a deep root in his Middle Earth by incorporating mythic elements from all the Northern Tribes.
I also see Proto-Indo-European as the attempt to re-create the time when we all spoke one language.

Cheers, Dave.
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Post by AutumnMoon » 01 Nov 2004, 15:34

:) I veiw Druidry as all of choices given but being asked to choose I decided on the second.
I have only just started the Bardic course I feel as if I have come home if that does not sound daft to you.
I have always felt close to nature and have had done so from being a child. I have always had a feeling that I can never put into words. It is like the feeling whe you have been away from home for a long time and you walk into your home and the feeling of warmth and comfort that you get. Well that is how I feel about Druidry fro first reading the poster about Druidry and what it is about to actually putting things into practice it all fells right to me. :)

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Post by mandahr » 01 Nov 2004, 16:32

Philip,

I am able to agree with all of the replies on this thread because the freedom of opinion and personal path is (to me) what Druidry is all about.

Some of us had to be 'pushed' out of their current 'path' of worship and self discovery in order to realize just how static and rigid some paths can be.

I was brought up Roman Catholic and as I grew I realized that many of my philosophies and practices were not compatible with that path. I drifted spiritually for a while and was lucky enough to meet my beautiful wife. She showed me how to expand my spirituality without giving up any of my morals.

I am now slowly studying the Druid path and I like everything about it. It seems to fit me. I have always had a great love for nature. I flounder on semantics such as; is it God or Goddess or both or something else. I am learning that it isn't the label, it's the message and feeling that counts.

Thank you for listening to my opinions and thoughts.

:duir:

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Your approach to Druidry

Post by GreenOak51 » 02 Nov 2004, 22:12

Hi, Philip

Poll number two was far more thought provoking to me than poll number one. After three days of contemplation and questioning my understanding of spiritual and philosophical and then of magical/shamanic, I have cast my vote for #2.

However, IMHO, #2 and #3 are inseparable.

Druidry, by it's teachings (and, as was pointed out, we're speaking of OBOD Druidry), encourages us to seek more, to understand more, to experience more - on a physical sensory/existence level as well as a spiritual level. Our spirit continually grows and expands as we are on this path and we cross over, at some point, into my own perception of shamanism without consciously being aware that we have entered a new realm.

Magick was a little more difficult for me to define, hence my taking some time to answer this (old threads do come in handy). I'll be brief and say I would not be aware of the impact on my world (unintentional or intentional magick) due to my existence without the spiritual journeys that druidry has introduced me to. Through druidry, I am able to influence more directly ("do"? magick) the world around me.

I hope the polls help. Good luck,
T

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Post by Chris Raines » 03 Nov 2004, 00:46

I posted Druidry as my religion. The celebrations of the 8 festivals and the work in the gwers have been my framework for the way I experience the God and Goddess. I don't really get a bad taste in my mouth from the word religion, because through my work with the gwersi I have been able to deal with my issues that I associated with that word from my previous religious experience.
I think the best part about OBOD is that we all are allowed to experience it in whatever way we need to.

Peace of the Grove,

Chris

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Post by Eilthireach » 03 Nov 2004, 09:43

Druidry is certainly my spirituality, but I would not apply the term "religion".

I think that the term "religion" describes a form of spirituality that is becoming outdated in the Western World. In the aeon of Horus more and more people (druids and others) are searching for their own access to the sphere of the Divine, while in a religion this access is usually only available to a group of priests who deal out their insights to the masses. I have therefore selected #2.

If we want to follow Crowley in his famous definition of "magic" as "the science and art of causing change in conformity with the will" I would say that magic plays a role in my life, but not so much in OBOD druidry. But this, as the rest of the question, pretty much depends on how you define magic (religion, spirituality, philosophy).

With greetings from the colorful foothills of the Bavarian Alps,

Eilthireach /|\

I wish to learn the things that are
and understand their nature
and to know God.
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