Ecoregional Druidry: Adapting and Localizing Symbolism

Elemental Wheel with Traditional Animal Symbols

The Druid's Garden

To follow up from two posts a month or so ago on ecoregional druidry and the wheel of the year  and celebrating rituals, observances, and activities, I want to continue thinking about how druids can adapt basic practices of druidry to their local ecosystems.  This is particularly important for those of us in diverse ecosystems around the world: part of nature spirituality is being with nature as she is in your region. Thus far in this series, we’ve explored a druid’s wheel of the year that is seasonally-focused on a local ecosystem as well as the different ways we might celebrate this wheel of the year with rituals, observances, and activities.  Also tied to these spiritual practices are symbolism associated with the elements and directions; framing symbolism that weaves its way into our practices in a variety of different contexts. And so, in this post, we’ll delve into thinking…

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Taking up the Path of the Bard, Part I

The Druid's Garden

Bardic Artistic Expression through Clay, Sand, and Straw (cob)! Bardic Artistic Expression through Clay, Sand, and Straw (cob)!  (This is part of a tree piece I collaborated on at Strawbale Studio in Michigan)

A group of people sharing stories and songs by the fire. A fine pair of leather shoes. A beautiful woven garment. A tale full of twists and mystery. Finely wrought iron doors. An amazing wood carving on a stump. A marble sculpture. A wildly painted mural on a wall. A cob structure with whimsical trees and forms. A song that reaches deep within you when you hear it.  A rousing speech. Each of these, and so many others, represent the natural creative expressions of humanity. Taking up the path of the bard is one of three paths in the druid tradition (along with the work of the Ovate and the Druid). Yet, many people aren’t sure how to take up the path of the bard because…

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Witches of America | Alex Mar

“Witches are gathering…”

When most people hear the word “witches,” they think of horror films and Halloween, but to the nearly one million Americans who practice Paganism today, witchcraft is a nature worshipping, polytheistic, and very real religion. So Alex Mar discovers when she sets out to film a documentary and finds herself drawn deep into the world of present-day magic.

Witches of America follows Mar on her immersive five-year trip into the occult, charting modern Paganism from its roots in 1950s England to its current American mecca in the San Francisco Bay Area; from a gathering of more than a thousand witches in the Illinois woods to the New Orleans branch of one of the world’s most influential magical societies. Along the way she takes part in dozens of rituals and becomes involved with a wild array of characters: a government employee who founds a California priesthood dedicated to a Celtic goddess of war; American disciples of Aleister Crowley, whose elaborate ceremonies turn the Catholic mass on its head; second-wave feminist Wiccans who practice a radical separatist witchcraft; a growing “mystery cult” whose initiates trace their rites back to a blind shaman in rural Oregon. This sprawling magical community compels Mar to confront what she believes is possible—or hopes might be.

With keen intelligence and wit, Mar illuminates the world of witchcraft while grappling in fresh and unexpected ways with the question underlying every faith: Why do we choose to believe in anything at all? Whether evangelical Christian, Pagan priestess, or atheist, each of us craves a system of meaning to give structure to our lives. Sometimes we just find it in unexpected places.

Source: Witches of America | Alex Mar

ArchDruid Emeritus Ian Corrigan Visits Candelo’s Corner

 

ian-corriganMonday, February 18 at 8pm est, Candelo’s Corner on KDCL Media, welcomes ArchDruid Ermeritus Ian Corrigan.

Ian Corrigan has been teaching, learning, singing and playing in the American Neopagan movement since 1976. He has decades of experience in a variety of occult, pagan and magical topics.

Having received his 3rd degree initiation in Celtic Traditional Wicca in the early 80s, Ian has led eclectic study groups, a traditional Wiccan coven and a Druid Grove. Ian has been well-known for decades at Pagan festivals as a bard, ritualist and teacher.

For the past 30 years Ian’s primary path has been Celtic polytheism and especially Neopagan Druidism. Ian has been a primary author and teacher in Ar nDraiocht Fein (ADF). He is a founder of Stone Creed Grove, ADF’s oldest working congregation, and served as ADF’s first Chief Liturgist and first elected Vice Archdruid.

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