Archive for the ‘druid’ Category

Recover health, hope and happiness with the help of trees — guest post

May 7, 2019

Druid Life

This blog is inspired by the principles of the Tree Charter – find out more about it and how to get involved, here – https://treecharter.uk/

There’s no doubt about it that time with trees improves our mental health. They offer a great deal of good to our bodies as well – cleaning air, cooling urban environments and rural ones alike, holding moisture in the soil. Having trees makes for good human habitat. They protect us from excess sun and thus from skin cancer.

Re-greening a landscape is a reliable way of giving people hope. A dead, dry landscape doesn’t support life and offers humans nothing – except the drama of exposed soil. A green landscape can feed and shelter us, give us respite from the weather and blesses us with beauty. In most parts of the world, planting trees is the way to overcome environmental degradation. We have to plant…

View original post 188 more words

Advertisements

STOP ECOCIDE: CHANGE THE LAW -guest post

April 26, 2019

https://rosher.net/2019/04/26/stopecocide-change-the-law/stopecocide1https://www.stopecocide.earth/

Stand out from the crowd: Nimue Brown guest post

February 27, 2019

  As a Druid whose first instinct is to be a supporter and cheerleader of the ongoing whatevers, I am accepting this insight from Nimue Brown as a life challenge.

Druid Life

Standing out from the crowd is on Molly Scott Cato’s list of things to do to resist fascism. I think this is a particularly interesting one for Pagans. For a person who feels afraid, blending in and not drawing attention is a very natural approach to take. To make yourself visible can feel, in hostile environments, like making yourself into a target. However, if we all try to protect ourselves by conforming, what we get is an even narrower range of safe ways of being, ever more pressure to conform and ever more vulnerability for the people who can’t.

Fascism doesn’t like diversity. It doesn’t like there being many different faiths and philosophies, and ways of living and being. Diversity makes people harder to control. It’s worth noting that tyranny generally doesn’t like diversity – you only have to think of the clothing restrictions in Maoist China. Tyranny loves…

View original post 214 more words

Poetry for healing

February 19, 2019

beautiful truth.

Druid Life

Many people turn to poetry for catharsis. While that doesn’t always lead to poems that are meaningful to anyone else, it definitely does work as a cathartic process. Part of this is simply being able to vent. Part of it, however, has everything to do with how you can use language when writing poetry.

The English language doesn’t have a lot of words for describing emotions. To talk about emotions in any detail, we are obliged to say what they are like, or to demonstrate how they play out by using metaphors. If I tell you I am suffering from depression, that will give you a limited idea of what I’m going through. If I tell you that my body is full of lead, and my heart has become a stone, that I am walking through a blasted wasteland where nothing lives or grows and desperately trying to find a…

View original post 340 more words

imbolc blessing from @ADFDruidry

February 5, 2019

Earth Mother,

Spirits of Inspiration,

Ancestors,

Nature Spirits,

Shining Ones,

Let me be creative;

Let fertility of mind, Body, And spirit

Be like a cornucopia

Where all good things come

From me And to me.

Let fertility nourish my Way.

And let bounty be my gift.

So Be It.

flame

dypodkdx0ail66y

 

https://twitter.com/adfdruidry/status/1092800264799703042/photo/1

 

(also happy Lunar New Year of the Pig)

Be more than a visitor: Philip Carr-Gomm guest post

January 23, 2019

I was saddened to hear about the death of the poet Mary Oliver this week. Her poetry so beautifully explores the connection between the human and natural world, reminding us that there is no separation, that nature is our home in the deepest, most spiritual sense. I read a wonderful quote in the Independent that comes from her book of essays, Long Life. In it, she says of herself,

In my outward appearance and life habits I hardly change — there’s never been a day that my friends haven’t been able to say, and at a distance, ‘There’s Oliver, still standing around in the weeds. There she is, still scribbling in her notebook’.
But, at the center: I am shaking; I am flashing like tinsel.

This speaks so brilliantly of her skill to help us glimpse the extraordinary in the seemingly ordinary, both within us and around us; to crack open our dull vision and shine a light upon the magic of this world, enabling us to feel more intimately and powerfully a part of life. The body of work she has left us, is a true gift.

When Death Comes

When death comes
like the hungry bear in autumn;
when death comes and takes all the bright coins from his purse

to buy me, and snaps the purse shut;
when death comes
like the measle-pox

when death comes
like an iceberg between the shoulder blades,

I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering:
what is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness?

And therefore I look upon everything
as a brotherhood and a sisterhood,
and I look upon time as no more than an idea,
and I consider eternity as another possibility,

and I think of each life as a flower, as common
as a field daisy, and as singular,

and each name a comfortable music in the mouth,
tending, as all music does, toward silence,

and each body a lion of courage, and something
precious to the earth.

When it’s over, I want to say all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.

When it’s over, I don’t want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.

I don’t want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.

I don’t want to end up simply having visited this world.

~ Mary Oliver

mary-oliver-c-mariana-cook-2012-1-

https://www.philipcarr-gomm.com/be-more-than-a-visitor/

 

 

reclaimthelaw : The Duty of Care– guest post

December 12, 2018

via reclaimthelaw

excerpts —

…The British Government is voted in, and paid, by the British People to serve the best interests of the British People. To this end therefore the Government is the servant of the British People, and the People are the Masters of the Government.

It is UNLAWFUL for a master to employ a servant to commit a reckless act (the vicarious responsibility of a master for the act of a servant); so if the British Government is reckless in it’s duty of care for the environment, then it is unlawful for the British People to employ -i.e. pay tax to- the Government as long as the Government continues to be reckless.

Our intention is not to persuade people to withhold their taxes (desirable as that may be to a great many of us); to do so would hardly be seen as reasonable, prudent and well intentioned.

It is our intention to inform the people of this country of the facts and thereby to exert as much political pressure as we may upon the Government to cease their apparent recklessness…

…There is a Universal Law of social behaviour which always applies, to any group of creatures, at any time; in the past, and in the present, and in the future; in any place, in any possible universe.

The Universal Law is quite simply that any creatures living in a group do not, as a general rule, injure each other.

If the members of a group injure each other, then that group will get smaller and smaller, until, at the end, if the members continue to injure eachother, there is only one creature left, which is not a group . . .

…In British Law today there is a “Duty of Care” which states that:

“YOU MUST TAKE REASONABLE CARE

TO AVOID ACTS OR OMISSIONS,

WHICH YOU CAN REASONABLY FORESEE,

WOULD BE LIKELY TO INJURE YOUR NEIGHBOUR “

This reasonable standard of care,

as outlined in the “Duty of Care” above,

is applied to all persons in the UK

including the Government, the Bankers,

and the Legal System itself…

THE DUTY OF CARE APPLIED TO Unnecessary Unreasonable Environmental Damage & Destruction

Bearing in mind the huge increase in public awareness of UUEDD over the last five or ten years, it is no longer possible for anyone in a position of responsibility to claim that they are unaware of the threat of UUEDD to the nation’s (not to mention the planet’s) well-being and security.

Therefore, any acts or omissions leading to further UUEDD, committed by person(s) in positions of responsibility are done in the full knowledge that such acts and omissions are already injuring all of us, on a massive scale, physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually.

THEREFORE ANY ACTS OR OMISSIONS LEADING TO FURTHER UUEDD

COMMITTED BY PERSONS IN POSITIONS OF RESPONSIBILITY

ARE RECKLESS AND

CRIMINAL.

14333616_1239135006116749_1735210735432864175_n

guest post from OBOD: AWEN leads to Phoenix art school

August 23, 2018

How Druidry Helped Create a Successful Art School in Phoenix, Arizona

metroarts1-1

Metro Magic and the Subtle Laws of Manifestation: The Story of How Druidry Helped Create a Successful Art School in Phoenix, Arizona
by Matthew Thomas Baker – Druid and Arts Educator

excerpt:

Looking back, years later, I have come to see that we learned in those early years, to live on the creative edge of life itself. There were many other small and medium-size Metro magical moments over the years. Once we became more established they seemed to move from securing our site and on to manifesting for the students themselves. Time and time again the right students have found their way to us. We have grown to over 250 students aged 13-18, and they are all engaged in the creative process. Through the art-making process, they explore the invisible curriculum that teaches how to live on the edge, take risks, and listen for what wants to emerge in their art and by extension their lives.

The school has, of course, gone on to deal with other serious challenges, for each stage of organizational growth presents its own unique hurdles to overcome. Yet, in all those stages the underlying faith in the process that was established in the early years continued to guide me and the school. Even in the face of deep criticism and even betrayal, we have continued to listen for what wants to arise in the space. At each hurdle we have found a way through or around the challenge. The path has always been one of learning, the most meaningful of which has also been deeply humbling, for it is always something just out of one’s capacity to see or understand that must be learned.

Creative transformation is the underlying process and purpose of magic. It is, in essence, what the universe is up to. After all these years of connecting to the source of my own inspiration and letting the AWEN flow through, I have come to see that magic works because we align ourselves with what is already happening and wants to happen. Sometimes, we do not want certain things to happen, but we cannot see all the ways in which the unfolding of the story is part of the larger tapestry of our growth and development.

Perhaps, in the end, we are all destined to become both mystics and magicians. Perhaps we are designed to connect with the radiant source of our inspiration while we learn to midwife the inspired dreams of our shared hearts into existence. If we can sense and trust what wants to emerge from within and learn to rest in the underlying unity of what is, then we can develop the magical capacity to shape our world into a more beautiful and elegant place.

Epilogue:

Metro Arts continues to thrive and has moved into stage three of organizational development. This later stage of growth ensures that Metro will last long after the founders are gone, and will continue to be of service to the many young people who find their way to the school. Today Matthew Baker continues as Head of School, while at the same time he feels called to the next stage of life’s adventure. He has co-founded a new institute which is committed to braiding together the insights of the Nondual mystical traditions with the creative and deeply transformative capacities of the Shamanic traditions. These two wisdom streams have been and continue to be an integral part of the development and management of Metro Arts. Matthew’s goal is to develop tools and pathways that help others help themselves to bring their own authentic contribution to the world, and in that process develop meaning and purpose in their lives.

https://www.philipcarr-gomm.com/how-druidry-helped-create-a-successful-art-school-in-phoenix-arizona/

art by Frida Kahlo

Nimue Brown guest post: Community and conflict

July 16, 2018

https://druidlife.wordpress.com/2018/07/15/community-and-conflict/  

These are Nimue’s paragraphs, but I have put them in a different order.  For the original, use the link to her Druid blog, above.

I’ve been in communities that shrug shoulders over conflict. I’ve watched people leave those spaces in all kinds of states of distress and discomfort. I’ve been the person who leaves. I’ve also been in spaces with people who take responsibility for the wellbeing of the community as a whole, and who wade in when things get difficult. I’ve seen problems solved, and people challenged in good ways, to do better. I’ve seen vulnerable people supported, and socially awkward people helped. I’ve seen confidence built, and boundaries fostered. I’ve seen wellbeing improved, and the communities in question grow stronger for making the choice to act in these ways.

If someone bullies, exploits, abuses, controls or otherwise mistreats a person, it is not because of something inherent in the victim. It is because the abusive person is an abusive person. They can and will do that again. If a person lacks the experience, empathy or insight to navigate relationships well, they will keep having the same problems – either because they don’t hold the boundaries they need, or because they don’t deal well with others. Either way, it helps when the people around them respond to this and take on some responsibility for fixing it.

It’s easy to see conflict in personal terms, and understand it purely as being about those directly involved. Two people appear to fall out, and so we take the moral high ground by not getting involved, not taking sides, not asking what happened. If one of the people involved pulls away and leaves, we shrug, and say it’s a shame, and carry on with life. We all bear the losses quietly, because this is normal. We all bear the impact of the original problem, directly or indirectly.

One of the things this does is to tacitly support bullying and abuse. If one person mistreats another and we all nobly sit on the fence and refuse to pass judgement, we enable misbehaviour. It is the victim who will be pushed out. The person who was acting out will do it again, and probably get away with it again. This is not in anyone’s interests and does not make for a good community.

If we recognise that all relationships are held in a wider community context, we can look at them differently. It does not seem so acceptable for a community as a whole to react to a conflict by shrugging its shoulders. It becomes necessary for the community to find out what’s going on, make judgements and take action. These may be small measures to smooth over troubles and build bridges. There may be larger moves called for to challenge unacceptable behaviour. It may be necessary to identify what is intolerable.

Most of us in English speaking countries do not live in tight knit communities where people depend on each other to survive. As a consequence, unlike most of our ancestors we can afford not to be too invested in the idea of community. When things go wrong, we can just move on to another space. What this overlooks of course is the deep feeling of unrootedness and un-belonging that comes from changing your social context to deal with conflict. We might not need our communities to survive the winter, but we do need them for emotional wellbeing.

And for all these reasons, please do not be a fence-sitter.  Let Awen inform your voice as well as your actions. 

Happy Equinox

Truth and Stories

June 6, 2018

flame

There is an expression for communicating among humans– ‘breaking news’.   It refers to very fresh, not old, information that is sufficiently significant that the old reality, the older news, will be changed by it.  Like a newborn emerging from its eggshell it presents a fresh perspective upon our shared world.

Often our view of the world is a bit stale and habitual. Habits are a source of comfort , as old friends.  However, since things constantly change with the passage of time, it may be necessary to freshen up our grasp of reality, of truth itself, if our position isn’t comfy anymore, if our rear ends sag too near the road upon the life path.

What do you take as a ‘given’ that might not be so?  Is there anything that simply won’t ‘come true’ no matter how hard you believe it?  Have you begun to no longer trust your own thoughts, your own feelings, maybe your own senses?  Danger, danger!  No matter how the New Agers sell the power of ‘manifesting your perfect life’.  it has to be do-able here upon the Earth-Mother. 

It may be time to still yourself, ground yourself, reconnect with your own heart and soul, where in truth we are already part of perfection.  Make certain that the news you pass along is truth.

There is also a Druid slogan, ‘Truth against the world.’  That truth is known as Awen,  insight into the eternal and immutable.  All things that manifest can only do so to the extent that they are part of that Truth.  Check it against inner Awen, if you have come across it out in the World.

 

Salman Rushdie has written things that ring true, even presented as fiction, enough to perturb many people whose perspectives are a bit rigid.  He wrote recently about the dilemma of #fakenews  that can get its readers or listeners confused about how our world actually is.  Those who shout loudest that something is #fakenews may actually want us to instead stop thinking and trust the brand of expertise or authority they are touting at the moment.

 

“I have argued, for much of my life as a writer, that the breakdown in the old agreements about reality is now the most significant reality, and that the world can perhaps best be explained in terms of conflicting and often incompatible narratives. In Kashmir and in the Middle East, and in the battle between progressive America and Trumpistan, we see examples of such incompatibilities. I have also maintained that the consequences of this new, argumentative, even polemical attitude to the real has profound implications for literature—that we can’t, or ought not to, pretend it isn’t there. I believe that the influence on public discourse of more, and more varied, voices has been a good thing, enriching our literatures and making more complex our understanding of the world.

“And yet I now face, as we all do, a genuine conundrum. How can we argue, on the one hand, that modern reality has become necessarily multidimensional, fractured and fragmented, and, on the other hand, that reality is a very particular thing, an unarguable series of things that are so, which needs to be defended against the attacks of, to be frank, the things that are not so, which are being promulgated by, let’s say, the Modi Administration in India, the Brexit crew in the U.K., and the President of the United States? How to combat the worst aspects of the Internet, that parallel universe in which important information and total garbage coexist, side by side, with, apparently, the same levels of authority, making it harder than ever for people to tell them apart? How to resist the erosion in the public acceptance of “basic facts,” scientific facts, evidence-supported facts about, say, climate change or inoculations for children? How to combat the political demagoguery that seeks to do what authoritarians have always wanted—to undermine the public’s belief in evidence, and to say to their electorates, in effect, “Believe nothing except me, for I am the truth”? What do we do about that? And what, specifically, might be the role of art, and the role of the literary arts in particular?”

Salman Rushdie

We tell a story of ourselves by the very act of living our lives each day.  Nimue Brown has written about that recently, too.  Because we live with other humans, and in fact need to do it that way,  there is always a balancing act between their realities and ours.  Sometimes, they conflict badly enough that one story will try to over-write another.  Danger, Danger again!  How much of your own truth are you willing to amend just to keep the peace?

“People will fight and kill to protect their stories and their take on reality, even when those stories are clearly harming them. As the person breaking the story, you are perhaps more likely to be seen as the destructive oppressor, and not the rescuing angel you may imagine yourself to be. Those still in the story may simply recast you so that they can keep the story going. “You used to be such a nice little girl. I don’t know what went wrong.”

“Sometimes, the only way out of a story is to break away from the people whose story it is. Sometimes, the only option is to play the role consciously and then escape into spaces where you can properly be yourself. Sometimes to do that, a safe house is required, a new identity, police protection. Sometimes you have to ask difficult questions about the price of your relationships, and the implications of leaving them. People can die as a consequence of misjudging this.

“If you call out a story as a lie, even if you can evidence it, people may fight you. They may fire you, take you to court, lie about you, attack you on social media. They may deprive you of key resources. If you refuse to play your allotted role you may be harassed, ridiculed, threatened or abandoned. You have no control over how other people respond when you stop acting in line with their story.

“But you have the right to live your own life, and you have the right to be safe. So, if you’re wrecking a story, plan your escape routes first – more or less literally as required. Do some risk assessment. Consider the consequences. Try to break the story as calmly as you can, with minimal drama. There is nothing like drama to keep a story moving, because even as you think you’re resisting it, you can find the energy of it being sucked in and used to reinforce the existing story. You were always a useless child. Now you’re upsetting everyone with this stupid idea that you can do something. It’s all your fault… These are the outcomes to avoid.

“It’s natural to want justice, to want recognition. It’s reasonable to want the people who have miscast you to realise their mistakes. It’s also very likely that you won’t get that. If you choose to stay and fight, you may be pulled back into the old story. Sometimes, it is better to go quietly and start a new story of your own somewhere else.”

Nimue Brown  

Sometimes another person is so afraid of your view that they insist upon calling you wrong, or a ‘bad guy’, even insisting that what you see with your own eyes, hear with your own ears, is not so.  Danger, Danger yet again.   If your own senses cannot be relied upon you are severely crippled for handling living. Best to stay true to them, and to yourself, and get far away from one who can only thwart you.  They are ‘gas-lighting’. If you remain with this person,  soon everything will be labeled as your fault.  It never helps to feel that way;  the person who constantly refuses to take responsibility for their own truth will try to get another to do it for them.

The world is our teacher.  Sometimes it is our culture that presents itself, other times we can go right to the Source, to Nature.  Nature has no bias.  No matter what direction a culture may sway us, Nature will not care.  The better a culture harmonizes with Nature, the more successful it proves.  But too often cultures are ossified and losing touch with Nature; they are the ones that are most concerned with the obedience of individuals.

It is one thing to observe and to learn, and another to be a mere follower who depends on the views of another.  If your world has become a prison of fears and prejudices,  it’s time for an open door policy and a good sweeping out.

The Third Reich built its powers by scapegoating minorities and poisoning the public opinion to allow for atrocities against ‘lesser’ populations. Secrecy shielded the worst of the genocide from ordinary citizens. Lies of omission were very common.

Truth is not meant to be hidden.  There is nothing to be ashamed of.  If you have anything in your story that you think you need to hide, please heal it.  If someone else in your world gives you shame for a thing,  do not accept that present.  Or if you find it has been delivered, put it in the compost.

“In Germany, after the Second World War, the authors of what was called Trümmerliteratur, or “rubble literature,” felt the need to rebuild their language, poisoned by Nazism, as well as their country, which lay in ruins. They understood that reality, truth, needed to be reconstructed from the ground up, with new language, just as the bombed cities needed to be rebuilt. I think we can learn from their example. We stand once again, though for different reasons, in the midst of the rubble of the truth. And it is for us—writers, thinkers, journalists, philosophers—to undertake the task of rebuilding our readers’ belief in reality, their faith in the truth. And to do it with new language, from the ground up.”

Salman Rushdie

If you find yourself unsure about a story which is not presented as fiction, but as truth,  be careful of it.  Even the people you trust can be fooled.  Try tossing it all against the wall and see what sticks.

adfsigil

peace, peace, peace