Awen and the Druids

Spirituality Attuned to Nature

Tolerance and Respect for all Life and Beliefs

Inspired Practical Living that Sees Wonder in each Moment

A Spirituality based upon Meditation and Individual Study

Brendan Myers, in his Mysteries of Druidry, defines a Druid as 'one who parts the Mists of Manannan, who drinks deeply of the Well of Wisdom, and who speaks the Sacred Truth." A Druid parts the mists by engaging their spirituality through meditation and ritual to recognize the oneness and unity of all life, to perceive the hidden meaning and logic of nature mysticism. A Druid immerses their self in study and learning to acquire knowledge and the application of that knowledge through wisdom to make positive changes in their life.

The Druids were the intellectual class of the ancient Celts. They were the judges, poets, bards, historians, healers, and star gazers. They served as the priests of their people. Because of their power and influence, they were decimated by the Romans as Roman power spread across Western Europe. Later, in the edges of their culture, in the corners of the British islands, Wales, Scotland, and Ireland, their remaining influences were slowly curtailed by the early Celtic Christian church. By the 6th century, even the bardic class were losing their power and becoming mere troubadours and singers at royal courts. Similar to the Eastern philosophies, the Druids kept no written records of their beliefs and practices. A druid would spend decades perfecting memory skills, passing along their knowledge to each new generation.

Modern druidry was born in the romantic movements of the modern era with the first Druidic orders appearing in the late 18th century. (An article on neo-Druidry is available from Wikipedia for background.) Despite any claims, modern Druidry can only claim romantic influences from the ancient Druids. In addition, the terms druid and druidry are used by numerous religious and philosophic groups whose practices may vary greatly. One might easily claim that modern druidry resembles the tree of life, its trunk rooted in the romantic earth of the 18th century with new branches growing upward toward the skies in all directions.

Initiate

(Copyright 1984, C.M. Joserlin, "Raven")

I have seen the sun at midnight, slain the bull at his command,
Used the power of the crystal, felt the force direct my hand,
Thricefold served the silver lady, sailed upon the darkest sea,
Counted corpses in the forest, chanted runes upon the tree;
I have spoken words of power, summoned Hiram from the grave,
Sung Eurydice to ransom, called 'Phrodite from the wave;
I've recited rhymes to order, chimes that echoed in the brain,
That incited love and joy -- or hate and sorrow, fear and pain;
I have built the greater temple and survived the tests inside,
I have stepped on earth and water and been pierced in feet and side,
I have danced around the fire, walked the circle semi-clad,
I have chased the beasts and shared the feasts of bread and wine we had;
I have travelled to the hidden centers, studied in their lore,
Listened to the quiet murmurs and looked deep into the core,
Bound strong servants to their duties, striven long within the craft,
Drawn the dirk and done the work while being warded fore and aft;
'Till the flower opened to me, and I learned the secret ways,
Found the stone and on me shone the black and white and ruddy rays,
Saw with many-colored vision and through many changes passed,
Let myself become myself, and reached my mastery at last.

 


What Do Druids Believe? (What Do We Believe?) by Philip Carr-Gomm (Paperback - April 3, 2006)
Way of the Druid: Renaissance of a Celtic Religion and its Relevance by Graeme K. Talboys (Paperback - Jan 25, 2006)

Walking With the Green Man: Father of the Forest, Spirit of Nature by Bob Curran and Ian Daniels (Paperback - April 30, 2007

Druid Magic Handbook
The Druid Magic Handbook: Ritual Magic Rooted in the Living Earth by John Michael Greer (Paperback - Feb 1, 2008)

Markale's Druids
The Druids: Celtic Priests of Nature, Jean Markale, Jon Graham (Translator)

What Life Was Like: Among Druids and High Kings: Celtic Ireland Ad 400-1200

The Bardic Source Book: Inspirational Legacy and Teachings of the Ancient Celts, John Matthews (Editor)

A Brief History of the Druids, Peter Berresford Ellis

Bonewit's Essential Guide to Druidism
Bonewits's Essential Guide to Druidism by Isaac Bonewits and Philip Carr-Gomm