Ritual for the Burning of the World

The Druid's Garden

As I write these words, fires are ravaging Australia. It’s a bleak situation, ecologically and politically. The firest at this point are about the combined size of the entire state of West Virginia and are all through the entire continent, particularly along the coasts. Ecologically, this is a disaster with severe and long-ranging consequences for Australia and the world. While billions of lives have been consumed in the fires (animal, insect, bird, fish, reptile, amphibian, plant and fungi), the Guardian reports that it is likely that numerous species will go extinct from the fires because sites that house critically endangered species are all burning—in some cases, all of the protected habitats of these species are on fire. The situation in Australia is being made worse by current Australian leadership, who, rather taking a firm stance on climate change and human causes, instead are digging in their heels and pandering to…

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Create Your Own Personal Haven—Anywhere

Good Witches Homestead

Stress! It’s the scourge of our contemporary society. And the thought of retiring to a safe haven where you can banish stress, repair your nerves, and renew your life is a concept whose time has come. Creating a personal sanctuary, whether it be in a bedroom, bathroom, patio, garden, or the Great Outdoors, seems to be a cherished goal for many of us stressed-out people.

But how to go about fashioning such a retreat? What elements are required, and can you do it in a limited space and on a tight budget? These questions and many others form the contents of my book, A Sanctuary of Your Own. Perhaps you’ve read books, visited websites, and watched TV programs dedicated to this subject. With wild enthusiasm, you’ve started designing your space, and you’re halfway there. But, somehow things aren’t quite gelling. So in this short article, I’ll distill some of…

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The Evergreen Cult – Podłaźniczka

Soul Dreamers

By Phoenix –I love trees, especially large pine, cedar, juniper, oak trees and sequoias. The Pines and Cedars are great medicine trees, and I love when I am in a Pine forest or surrounded by cedars of every kind. I don’t know why, its not really something I can explain how good they smell and how good I feel when I am surrounded by them.

Oaks that are very full and big, supplying the world, including humans and animals with fire and warmth, with the building of homes and more. And of course the ancient giants, Sequoias are spectacular ancient trees and remind us how truly small we are in comparison.

These are some of the things that makes my heart feel connected to mother earth. There have been times in ancient cultures and even today where the tree is honored for what it gives us so we can…

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A Druid’s Guide to Homestead Bird Flocks and Flock Happiness

The Druid's Garden

On the Druid’s Garden homestead, we have many feathered friends. I think a lot of people see birds just as livestock, but here, we see them a little differently. Thus, I wanted to create a short guide for people who were thinking about cultivating a relationship with a backyard flock of birds but they weren’t sure what kind of birds they might want!  Of course, this is my own druid perspective on homestead bird flocks, which might be a bit different than what you’ll find on more general sites.   In this guide, I’ll talk about a variety of backyard flock breeds, how they might help your garden and homestead, challenges, temperament, and more. I will also note that I haven’t raised birds for meat, so I won’t talk about that much in this guide. I’ll cover four common backyard flock birds: chickens, ducks, geese, and guinea fowl.

 

Entering Into…

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The Bee and the Machine: Moving Beyond Efficiency and towards Nature-Centeredness

The Druid's Garden

Animals have spirit!

Over the course of the last four centuries, the Western World has created a set of “unshakable” principles concerning the natural world: that nature is just another machine, that animals don’t feel and do not have souls, that plants and animals aren’t sentient. Descartes, writing in the 1600s during the early rise of mechanization, was one of the first to make this claim. He posited that animals are mechanical automata, that is, they are beings without souls, feelings, or pain. These same ideas were not limited to non-human life; we see the same kind of thinking being applied to justify slavery, genocide, colonialization, and a list of other atrocities. When we combine this kind of thinking with the economic ideas of “growth at all costs” and “efficiency”, we end up in the dystopian fiction we find ourselves living in right now. I want to take some time…

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On Being a Minority Religion and Paths to Building Respect

The Druid's Garden

“I’m sorry, I’m unavailable to meet on that day.”

A pause, “well, why is that? This is an important meeting.”

“Because it is a major holiday for me, and I am taking a personal day to celebrate it.”

Another, longer pause.  “Wait, your holiday is Halloween? That’s not a religious holiday.”

“No, my holiday is Samhain, which is a holiday dedicated to my ancestors. Modern Halloween traditions actually derived from this much older holiday.”

Another pause. “Can’t you celebrate it on another day?”

“No.  The timing is critical to the celebration. Would I ask you to meet on Christmas or Easter?”

Another pause. “That’s not the same thing.”

The above interchange is a fairly common interaction fairly typical of my workplace experiences in being a minority religion, a druid, here in the USA. In fact, I had this exchange with someone just last week. Since this kind of thing seems…

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Shoes

Many people take their shoes off to keep the negative energy from the day out of their house.

I don’t know if it’s still a practice, I’ve been married nearly 35 years, of tying tin cans to scare off evil spirits and shoes to the bumper of the transportation the newlyweds use to leave the wedding beginning their new life together.

secretsoftheserpent

We have lost what the shoe symbolizes in today’s world.  If you look up on the internet what the symbol of the shoe means, it will tell you that it represents authority and power, humility and servitude, our direction and focus in life, or our faith in god.  How you get faith in god from shoes is beyond me?  What I have found will make way more sense and will answer a few of questions.  One of those questions being, why would someone throw a shoe at President Bush?  

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The Witch Reborn in Autumn: Spiritual Death and the Dance of Bones | Spirits Dance Bones

Good Witches Homestead

The Wild Witch and the Dance of Bones

The moon ascends from her primal cave,
And my feet twitch in excitement.
For this is the long-awaited call
Back to my soul’s home.
I become a wild witch once more.
Hail Autumn,
With your winds of change,
Blowing me free of what has passed,
Dancing in the delight of freedom.
Spiraling joyfully towards the darkness that is my truth.
Spinning onwards to Hekate’s Cave,
The font of magick and mystery.
The spirits of the season join me and the leaves, in our delight,
Knowing deep in our souls that we are connected,
In our pursuit of the deeper truths.
Swirling wildness embraces me,
As I proclaim
My place among them.
Our dance calls forth the spirits,
Of the departed and the mighty,
Night wandering under the pale light of the moon,
Onwards, our steps in harmony,
Towards the crossroads where we…

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Earthen Nature Spirit Statues with Cob

The Druid's Garden

An earth spirit statue in my greenhouse, freshly made with sticks and an oak gall

A lifetime ago, myself and a dear friend dug some clay out of a hillside.  We each took half of it.  My half of the clay was used to form an earthen statue, a guardian statue, for that same friend who was struggling with terminal cancer while still in his early 20’s. It had a wooden tree knot head, stones for its belly, a stick staff, and an earthen body.  My friend accepted it reverently, and it went with him everywhere, even till the end. As he struggled with his battle with cancer, it grew nicked and chipped.  The wooden head fell off, just as my friend’s brain cancer grew more serious. When he passed on, the earthen statue passed on with him, returning to the earth. This statue was an impermanent being; fashioned of…

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The Ways of our Ancestors: Review of the Mountaincraft and Music Gathering

The Druid's Garden

Here, in the center of our camp, the sacred fire burns. This fire is tended for the four days we are together, never being allowed to go out. This is an ancestral fire, and all of us at the Mountaincraft gathering have the responsibility of feeding it. This is where we remember that learning primitive and earth skills is the work of our ancestors. This is where we gather for a quiet moment to commune with those ancestors, and will our bodies and hearts to remember. This is where, each morning, we gather as a group to hear about the day’s classes, call to the directions, hear a word of intention, and recieve a water blessing from Nancy Basket, a tribe elder. This is where, at each meal, some of us may find ourselves, talking with each other or engaging in quiet communion with the flame. This is where, each…

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