The Druid's Corner

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The Druid's Corner

A quiet place to learn and discuss Druid magic and Celtic lore......

Location: Under the magickal Oak Cathedral
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Latest Activity: Feb 27

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THE CELTIC ZODIAC

Started by G.O.L DARK RAVEN ONE S.O.L Sep 5, 2014. 0 Replies

The Celtic ZodiacCeltic Astrology was created by the Druids sometime around 1000BC. The Druid religion was based on 3 basic strands of belief: the first was to remember their ancestors and the past;…Continue

DRUID HOROSCOPE

Started by G.O.L DARK RAVEN ONE S.O.L Jun 15, 2014. 0 Replies

DRUID HOROSCOPEThe Druid's belief was that the human race descended from the trees and that each tree had it's own magical attributes. They inscribed the secrets of the trees into the Ogham alphabet.…Continue

Tir na nog

Started by Magistar Feb 28, 2013. 0 Replies

The Legend of Tir Na NogThe Land of YouthLong ago, on an isle of emerald green, surrounded by a sea of azure blue, there lived a young man named Oisin. Oisin liked to explore the moors with the…Continue

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Comment by G.O.L DARK RAVEN ONE S.O.L on February 27, 2017 at 12:53am

well done Raven Ban Draoidh

Comment by Magistar on July 14, 2011 at 10:05am
Comment by Magistar on July 14, 2011 at 9:51am
What was Druidry?


The Druids were the educated elite of what is now called the "Celtic" race. Many historians and archaeologists now argue that there never was an actual Celtic race but for the sake of clarity and to give a sense of familiarity, I will use the term throughout this booklet. The Celts were a tribal people, with each tribe having its own chieftain. They were often at war with one another, raiding nearby tribal villages and stealing their neighbors' cattle. They were a warrior race who, in one of those strange historical paradoxes, created the most beautiful art and inspired a religion which had a deep respect for Nature.


The Roman invasion of the Celtic regions was made easier because Celtic society was so fragmented. The Romans systematically conquered one tribe at a time. The only common link between the Celtic tribes was Druidry. The Druids were the prophets, magicians, seers, healers, royal advisors and judges. Druids could move in complete safety between tribes as their murder was punishable by death. Very quickly the Druids began to unite the tribes and give them the focus they needed against the invaders. This move did not go unnoticed and it was in the year 61CE that two crushing blows were dealt against the British. The first was the sacking of Ynys Mon, the Isle of Anglesey, off the north coast of Wales, which was a major centre of Druidic learning. As the Romans conquered Britain, the Druids retreated to Ynys Mon and became trapped. It was written by Tacitus that the Druidesses were like screaming furies who spat curses across the bay at the assembling Roman armies. Although this chilled the blood of the Centurions, they attacked and won the battle. All of the Druid Groves (sacred clearings within the forests) were destroyed and all Druids, Druidesses and their children were slaughtered. The other blow was the defeat of the Iceni Queen Boudicca whose revolt very nearly put an end to the entire Roman occupation. However, the massacre of the Druids did not destroy the religion. It continued in smaller groups and gradually the Druid was seen as little more than a wandering magician. A far cry from the high status previously held.


The ancient Druids consisted of three "grades", or divisions - Bards, Ovates and Druids.

Bards:
This was the first of the Druid Grades and introduced the student to the stories and traditions of the Tribe. The Bard learned all of the tales of the chieftain's victories and the secret lore of sacred poetry. A Bard was an honoured member of the Tribe who was welcome wherever he or she travelled. They were trained in the Art of Magic using the power of poetry in either praise or satire. Their Lore supplied the foundation to the religious and magical practice of Druidry, telling the nature of the Gods, the deeds of the Ancestors and the sacred places of the land. Through the power of the sacred word, expressed through poetry, storytelling and song, they invoked the blessings of the Spirit of Place, and of the Gods and ancestors of the people.

Ovates:
These were the prophets and seers. They worked with the three realms of past, present and future and entered into trance states, foreseeing the future fortunes of the Tribe. The Ovate was the Druid Shaman.


If the ancient Druids performed sacrifice (there is no hard evidence of this other than Caesar's account, which could well have been propaganda) then the Ovates would have been the people who oversaw such events. When considering the act of ritual sacrifice we must try to understand that the Celtic tribes lived and died by their crops. If the crops failed, then a hard winter of starvation and disease was inevitable. A whole village could be wiped out through lack of food; therefore, when such a catastrophe occurred, the ancients felt they had to offer a gift to their Gods. The true nature of sacrifice was to give somebody who came willingly. To offer themselves as such placed them with their Gods and the Tribe revered them as heroes.


To view ancient civilizations from the standpoint of modern ethics is a mistake. We have supermarkets and world trade, which keeps us supplied with wonderful food throughout the year. Now imagine growing all of the food you eat yourself, without the use of pesticides to protect the crop from blight and insect diseases. Then imagine your crop fails and you face a winter of unimaginable pain and suffering. Now imagine it happened for a second year....

Druids:
Having traveled through the realms of poetry, the Word, the trees and the spirits, the student finally became a Druid - the wise one who had passed through madness and survived. This brought great wisdom and peace; the Druid's role was therefore that of advisor, teacher and judge. In Celtic mythology tribal chieftains each had their Druid to whom they turned for advice during limes of need.


Between 5OOCE and the late middle ages the Druid tradition was kept alive in the tales and songs of the storyteller and wandering minstrel. During this lime two of the grades, namely Bard and Ovate, became merged and it is here we see such characters as Merlin and Taliesin emerging as seer-poets, living on the edge of sanity and completely accepted by the spirits of Nature. Much of the modern Druidic teaching stems from the words of the ancient Bardic tales and the poetry of Taliesin and Merlin.


The Bardic colleges continued to operate in Wales, Ireland, and Scotland, for many centuries, but eventually the last one was closed in the 17th century. However, the pull of this tradition was too strong and soon poets such as William Blake rediscovered the voice of the Bard. These Bardic revivalists, who revelled in the beauty of nature, met in the quieter rooms of public houses at the end of the 18th century, and thus the thread spins on....


What is Druidry today?
With the growing awareness many people have towards the environment, there is an understandable interest in the Nature, or Pagan, religions. Druidry means different things to different people. There are those who take their spirituality from Druidry and blend it with their own tradition, be that Pagan or Christian. And there are others who try to follow a rediscovered "Druidism", ie the Druid faith.


To give an insight into modem Druidry we must start with exploring the symbol and Druidic "sacred mantra" known as the Awen.

The Awen
Central to Druid philosophy is the force known as the Awen. Literally Awen means "flowing spirit" and it is this flowing spirit that guides us through the Druid work and, because the force of the Awen is described thus, it can be seen as many different things. The force of divine poetic inspiration, which is held within the three drops of potion brewed in the Cauldron of the Goddess Ceridwen, to the Christian Trinity of Father, Son and Holy Ghost, both could be described as the Awen. The symbol of the Awen is the "Three Rays of Light" shining from three single points surrounded by three circles. The three points represent the directions of the sunrises of the Soistices and Equinoxes. On the Summer and Winter Solstices the Sun rises east-north-east and east-south-east respectively, whilst on the Spring and Autumn Equinoxes it rises due east. The Awen also symbolises the three drops of inspiration from the Cauldron of Ceridwen. The three circles represent the three Circles of Creation in Welsh cosmology, ie Abred, Gwynvid and Ceugant. The central blackness represents the realm of Annwn. During a Druid ritual, the Awen can be intoned as a single monotone note using three syllables "Ah-oo-en"(some Druid Orders intone the three letters I. A. U. in a similar way). The power held within the Awen mantra can be used in many ways - from initiating poetic inspiration, to drawing down the blessing of the God and Goddess or evoking a change in the atmosphere of a ritual circle. It is truly a sacred word.


Holidays:
Like many others the Druids honour the eight seasonal festivals of our modern Pagan traditions. These being:


The Solar Cycle
Alban Arthan (Winter Solstice): Alban Arthan means the Light of Arthur. Some Druid Orders believe this means the Light of the hero King Arthur Pendragon who is symbolically reborn as the Sun Child (The Mabon) at the time of the Solstice. Others see the Light belonging to the star constellation known as the Great Bear (or the Plough) - Arthur, or Art, being Gaelic for Bear. This constellation shines out in the sky and can symbolise the rebirth of the Sun. At this point the Sun is at its southernmost point almost disappearing beyond the horizon, and the days are at their shortest. This was a time of dread for the ancient peoples as they saw the days getting shorter and shorter. A great ritual was needed to revert the course of the sun. This was probably calculated by the great circles of stone and burial grounds which are aligned to this festival, such as Newgrange in Co. Meath, Eire. Sure enough, the next day the Sun began to move higher into the sky, showing that it had been reborn.


This time of year is very cold and bleak, which is why so many celebrations are needed to help people get through the Winter months. It is significant that many civilisations welcomed their Solar Gods at the time of greatest darkness - including Mithras (the bull-headed Warrior God), the Egyptian God Horus and, more recently, Jesus Christ.


Alban Eilir (Spring Equinox): Alban Eilir means the Light of the Earth. As the Sun grows warmer so life begins to show through the soil. Small signs at first - the daffodils and crocuses - then more green as the bluebells and wood anemones spread through the woodland. Plants are seen by some as inanimate greenery with no actual feelings and life force. But Druids see life in all living things, from rocks and stones, to rivers and springs, plants and trees - all life is sacred. Have you ever thought about how you recognise the beginning of Spring? Is it the plant life? The weather? How does a plant know when it is time to grow? It cannot tell the time or see a calendar. Yet it knows. If it has senses then it has consciousness, if it has consciousness then it is more than an inanimate life form. So it is the return of life to the Earth that is celebrated at Alban Eilir, the time of balance.


One of the inner mysteries of Druidry is the Druid's egg. Life-giving, it is the egg protected by the hare, which is the symbol of Alban Eilir - still celebrated by the giving of Easter eggs by the Easter bunny.


Alban Hefin (Summer Solstice): Alban Hefin means the Light of the Shore. Druidry has a great respect and reverence for places that are "in between" worlds. The seashore is one such place, where the three realms of Earth, Sea and Sky meet. There is great power in places such as these. It is the time of greatest light when the Solar God is crowned, by the Goddess, as the King of Summer. It also brings some sadness because from now until Alban Arthan the Sun's strength is declining and we have entered the waning year. At this time the Dark Twin, or Holly King, is born - he will take his crown at Alban Arthan. Of all the festivals Druidry is mostly associated with Alban Hefin. The wonderful white-robed figures filmed at the dawn rituals at Stonehenge are testament to this. However, to many Druids it is the turning seasons and the cycle of life, death and rebirth - reflected in the Wheel of the Year in its completeness - which are significant.


Alban Elfed (Autumn Equinox): Alban Elfed means the Light of the Water. The Wheel turns and the time of balance returns. Alban Elfed marks the balance of day and night before the darkness overtakes the light. It is also the time of the second harvest, usually of the fruit which has stayed on the trees and plants to ripen under the Summer Sun. It is this final harvest which can take the central theme of the Alban Elfed ceremony. Thanking the Earth, in her full abundance as Mother and Giver, for the great harvest. It is the beginning of Autumn. The Agricultural Cycle


Imbolc: On or around the 1st February – This is often seen as the first of three Spring festivals. It is hard sometimes to think of Spring in what feels like the depths of Winter. But if we look at the ground we can see the first shoots of green beginning to reach towards the Sun. Imbolc can be celebrated on either the 1st or 2nd February, or more naturally when the Snowdrops cover the ground.


Imbolc by Damh the Bard
As the dark, cold morning gives way to light,
And the world shows its face dazzling in her nakedness,
So the twigs and leaf-bare branches,
Bow to the passing dance
Of old Jack Frost.
His crystal breath on the earth,
And the corners of houses weep icicles of joy.
But where is the Sun’s warmth?
Where is life?
A small flower, delicate and pure-white,
Looks to the earth,
As if talking to the waiting green,
“Not yet,” it seems to whisper.
“When I fall, then you can return.”
And she nods her head,
as the Lady passes by,
Leaving more flowers in Her wake.


Beltane: On of around the 1st May – Beltane is the beginning of Summer, or the height of Spring. It is thought that the ancients only recognised two seasons, these being Summer and Winter. Beltane is the time when the Earth is literally buzzing with fertility. Life springs forth in all of its richness, and the land is covered with beautiful flowers, the freshly opened leaves of the trees are a quality of green that they only show at this time of year. At Beltane the Lady of the Land takes the hand of the Horned God, and together they walk into the forest. Their cries of love bring all life from the Earth. Some celebrate Beltane on the dates given above, whilst others look to the flowers of the May tree as their signal that Beltane had, at last, arrived.


Lughnasadh: On or around the 1st August – Lughnasadh is the first of two harvest festivals, the other being Alban Elfed (the Autumn Equinox). At Lughnasadh we see the fields of corn being cut, and for some this is the true time of the festival. In the fields John Barleycorn, who laid with the Lady in the woods at Beltane, has grown old, and now stands bent and bearded with a crocked cane. He looks to the Sun as he has changed from green to gold, and he known that his time has come. His life will feed the people, and it is this sacrifice that we honour at Lughnasadh.


Samhain: On of around the 31st October – This is the festival of the dead, a festival of remembrance and honouring of our dear departed friends and relations. It is said that, at Samhain, the veil that separates the worlds is at its thinnest. So our world, the world of Faerie, and that of the dead, blend as one. It is no wonder then that this night has become so wrapped in superstition. It is a night of wonder, and magic. On this night the Cailleach (the Crone) comes to strip the leaves from the trees, to quicken the decay of the flesh of the year, so that it may feed the new life to come. We can also ask Her to take the unwanted aspects of our personal year away, so that this too might be transformed. Yet even on the darkest night of Samhain, whilst our minds ponder our mortality, if you listen carefully, you can hear the sound of a new-born child crying for its Mother’s breast, for shortly it will be Alban Arthan, the Winter solstice, and the Wheel will turn once more.


Druid Ritual
Druid ritual takes many forms and has many functions. Druids draw on various sources for ritual - including mediaeval and later Celtic literature, previous generations of Druid revivalists, archaeology, poetry, and other traditions. But they draw mainly on their own judgement, and experience, of what is right for a given moment. Most rituals begin with the call for peace for, as is said within Druid teaching, "without peace can no work be". The Druid will approach each quarter and say "May there be peace in the (direction)." Then the Sacred Circle is cast, followed by calls to the Spirits of the four directions. Rituals are frequently composed for a particular combination of time, place and people. They vary from the open celebration of the Bardic Gorsedd to the intimacy of personal Rites of Passage. They may take place anywhere - from great Stone Circles to private rooms. Most take place outdoors, since contact with the Earth, Sea and Sky is very important to the practice of Druidry. Group rituals commonly celebrate the eight major festivals. Rites of Passage include the naming or blessing of children, the onset of puberty, Druid weddings (handfastings), and passing on. Rituals may also be directed towards healing or spiritual growth. Most of the common elements of Druid ritual are those associated with the Bardic tradition. These include the Gorsedd Prayer, written by lolo Morganwg:

Grant, God/dess, thy protection,
And in protection, strength,
And in strength, understanding,
And in understanding, knowledge,
And in knowledge the knowledge of justice,
And in the knowledge of justice, the love of it,
And in that love, the love of all existences,
And in the love of all existences, the love of God/dess and all goodness.


Although this prayer occurs widely in Modern Druidry, there are many who do not use it.


Another widespread element of Druid ritual is the Oath of Peace:

We swear by peace and love to stand,
Heart to heart, and hand in hand,
Mark, 0 Spirit, and hear us now,
Confirming this, our Sacred Vow.

Druid ritual brings the participants into contact with the Spiritual. Thus our lives are touched with the deep sources of inspiration, creativity, wisdom and healing.

Oh that I could see to the Other Realm –
that I could learn the magic of the Ancients.
Oh that the secrets of the Druids
could be whispered in my ears
that I might know their beauty and their power –
that I might love again this land
and hear the voices of the Goddess and the God
in the trees and in the rivers.
Comment by Cherish Moondancer on March 10, 2011 at 4:20am
I am very interested in the Druid's. I do not have time to take it on. Does anyone want to moderate the group? Thanks, Bro, for the chants, very nice.
Comment by Shadowdancer on March 7, 2011 at 6:05pm
Maryelle, I saw your comment about doing the ritual solo. I don't have anyone to do them with either so I would just bypass the part where all others repeat the words being said.
Comment by Magistar on March 7, 2011 at 2:32pm
Saint Patrick's Day is an Irish bank and public holiday held on March 17th every year, relating to Saint Patrick who made all the Irish become Catholic CE 400 by using shamrocks... so we are told… but historians agree that the man who did this great conversion by bringing the Catholic religion to Ireland was called Palladius (who was married with children), he was most definitely not named Patrick, nor was he Irish and there were no snakes in Ireland for either he or Patrick to eradicate and neither he or Patrick ever mentions shamrocks. As the current calendar is less than 250 years in use it cannot be used to establish dates in the early medieval period so it is highly unlikely that he died on March 17th 460ad. So, what is his true story?

The saint called Paddy/Pat/Patrick was not Irish. Historians agree that Patrick was born in 373 CE giving two possible locations – Dumbarton in Scotland or on the west coast of Roman Britain i.e. Wales. The Romans are said to have exited Britain by 410 CE. Patrick eventually retired to Glastonbury, England, where he died at the age of one hundred and eleven on the 17 March, 460 A.D. These dates do not add up; 460 – 373 = only 87 years of age, so was he 87 or 111 years old when he died? It depends on which spin you read… The man who is so well known to us as St Patrick was originally called - Maewyn Succat or Magonus Saccatus Patricius. His father Calpurnius, had been a deacon and a decurion and his grandfather was a priest, his mother was called Conchessa.

Pope Celestine gave Maewyn Succat or Magonus Saccatus the name of Patrick. The Pope gave him the mission of bringing the Catholic Faith to Ireland. He gave him many relics and other spiritual gifts, and gave him the name "Patercius" or "Patritius". This name is derived from two Latin words pater civium meaning the father of his people. The designation is like Patricus, a Latin / Roman upper class name similar to Patrician. Rome had three classes – Patrician, Plebeian and Paganus. Patrician was the ruling class, while Plebeian was the working and middle class leaving Paganus to be the name / rank for all those who did not obey the rule of Rome.

We are told that he was taken into slavery at 16 years of age and sold in Ireland where he worked as a sheepherder for 6 years. It was during his time as a slave sheep minder that he began to have religious visions. These visions re-enforced (so we are told) his Catholic Faith. During one of these visions he heard voices that told him where he could find a getaway ship. He escaped, went to France where he became a priest and later on he returned to France to become a bishop.

He also burned many Druid books if his confessions are to be believed. 150 Druid Books were burned and on Tara he caused a competition with a Druid Book and the Bible to be thrown into a barrel of water – needless to say the Druid Book sank proving that the Bible was a better book. But hang on, we are repeatedly told that the Druids did not have books!

He also prayed for an old Druid to die – we are told that Arch-Druid Lochru was lifted up high in the air but Patrick knelt in prayer and the Druid fell and was dashed to pieces upon a rock. St Patrick is said to have caused the murders of almost eight hundred Druids. The folk tale of a she-beast called Caoranach that he banished to an island in the middle of Lough Derg in Donegal is accompanied by the tale of a woman who followed him very closely and that after he had banished the she-beast, this woman was never seen again... The pilgrimage today to the retreat centre on Lough Derg is a trick for the followers of this St Patrick religion because it is on the wrong island… the Pagan cave temple on the island that the Catholic Church tried to use was not hospitable to them so them moved their Purgatory to another island in the same lake and achieved some commercial success for a while.

He also caused two young princesses to die at the Ogulla Well, aka Cliabach Well. Here he baptised of Eithne and Fidelma, daughters of King Laoghaire of Tara. They were attending the great Druid school of Cashel Manannáin at Rathcroghan. The two sisters were washing when St. Patrick came upon them. He told them that the only way to see God is after death. St. Patrick then baptized them after which they both died. Not a good plan – this seems to be a cover story for something else.

The designation or title of ‘saint’ for this Patrick has never been acknowledged by any of the Roman Catholic Popes. The Irish church tells us that it was by public acclimation that Patrick got this title. Yet this is just spin. He was called Naomh, which means holy, just as Brigid was holy (ie Naomh) but by being in control of the native language the church changed the meaning of many words and Naomh changed from being holy to being saint. When this happened, no one could say anything because the church wielded the power of life and death and social ostracisation / excommunication against its detractors. Today, we are told that the head of Patrick, like that of Columcille and Brigid rest in a Jesuit Church in Portugal. Their 3 bodies are buried in Downpatrick in the North of Ireland.

Stories claim that when he was 60 years old, St. Patrick choose to go back to Ireland, the land of his slave years - to give the Gael the Catholic word. This was a very advanced age for the time and today the equivalent age may be near 90. His charisma converted many people and in the written records the church scribes tell us that he used the three-leafed shamrock to share the idea of father, son and holy spirit make God. In Ireland, we have five types of 3-leaf-clovers - trifolium dubium (lesser trefoil), trifolium repens (white clover), medicap lupulina (black medick), oxalis acetosella (wood sorrel) and trifolium pratense (red clover). These 5 trefoils have easy to spot differences and most could be found anywhere on the Island but St Patrick never even mentions one of them. Think about this – Patrick never mentions Shamrocks or Seamrogs once, never.

The Irish word for Shamrock is “seamrog” and it means “summer plant”. It grows in the wild all over the northern hemisphere, at high altitudes in the tropics and even in Africa and believe it or not even in South America. Many of these countries have snakes, some of which are huge, others deadly. The type of shamrock given by our Taoiseach to the US president is originally from Morocco, but don’t tell either of them.

Because there is no mention of the three-leaf clover / shamrock in Patrick’s writings we can conclude that this claimed association is quite simply modern propaganda by his promoters. The first written reference to shamrocks in conjunction with St Patrick was made in 1571; over a thousand years after St. Patrick had passed over. The Seamróg became the badge of St Patrick’s Day in 1681 in America. The first written record of the shamrock being a symbol of the Catholic Trinity appears in 1727. So it can be easily understood that the myth of St Patrick had a shamrock symbol added to it only a few hundred years ago – it may be obvious to some that this was a commercialisation tactic as well as displacement of native practices honouring the Spring Equinox.

The shamrock is not the official symbol of Ireland – this honour is reserved for the Celtic Harp. The shamrock now represents the culture of the Catholic Church hero of St Patrick. The shamrock became a symbol of rebellion against the oppression of Queen Victoria, who made it a capital crime (punishable by death) to wear the shamrock. This was probably the most influential reason for the worldwide adoption by Irish people and their sympathisers of the Shamrock as a symbol of Irishness.

Legend has it that Saint Patrick drove all the snakes out of Ireland -- that they all went into the sea and drowned (more on this later). There is no reason to believe there were actually any snakes in Ireland ever. There is no archaeological proof of snakes anywhere in Ireland at any time in the past. As this knowledge becomes more available we got fed the notion in to our mainstream consciousness that “this is probably an allegory for the driving out of paganism (snakes were a revered pagan symbol in some places)”. But this is just not so for Ireland, there were not and are not any snakes in Ireland so adding in bits of foreign snake lore is just disinformation.

The famous mountain of Croagh Patrick or as its more commonly known in Ireland “The Reek” was a place of Pagan Pilgrimage long before the Christians became Catholic in 325ad. It is a round cone shaped mountain that looks like a pyramid from a distance. This holy mountain is quartzite with seams of gold throughout, it sits on the western seaboard overlooking the Atlantic Ocean and the setting Sun.

Croagh Patrick aka the Reek was once know as Cruchan Aigli or in English; Eagle Mountain, it is 2510 feet above sea level. It has always been a holy place with pilgrimage on the last Sunday of July (during Catholic times), which is of course the wrong day as the Sun magic happens later in the month but the plan was to disconnect the people from the Sun and connect them to a foreign religion. This last Sunday of the month of July is now used because of traditional connection to Lughnasa, the harvest festival of Lugh, a bright god of the Tuatha De Dannan and in his day it may have been called Cnoc Lugh. Archaeological investigations backed up by excavations show that a hill fort with stone ramparts and dwellings and 30 hut sites are to be found on the top of the Reek. There are ancient cooking sites, megalithic tombs, standing stones, burial mounds, ringforts and today’s’ modern Catholic Church. I doubt that many Catholic Pilgrims know that this holy mountain was sacred to Lugh. Its old name of Eagle Mountain may refer to the practice of excarnation, de-fleshing of the dead by carrion birds before burning of the remains and finally – internment of the remaining bones in an earthen mound. This practice was not uncommon in prehistoric times.

It was on this holy mountain that St Patrick supposedly did his greatest magic – when he summoned a great host of loathsome and venomous creatures and then commanded them to cast themselves over the edge of the mountain, thus freeing the Irish countryside from all kinds of reptiles. This included dragons, snakes and all types of reptiles, none of which ever existed in Ireland. We are told that St Patrick did this by verbal command. The actual truth is that there were no snakes in Ireland and long after he was dead and his head was gone into Jesuit care somebody just added this trick to St Patrick’s name. It was as if the Pagan traditions were still so strong with the Lughnasa pilgrimage to the Reek in August that something had to be done to displace the old ways and such a fantastic story as dragon/snake banishing fitted the bill. It had to be long after St Patrick’s death or else everyone would know it was just made up fantasy.

So, St Patrick’s famous mountain was the most revered place of pilgrimage to the Pagan God Lugh. Hang on a minute – there were no snakes to be banished and he never mentions shamrocks in his writings, no Pope would call him saint and his most famous site is a place of ancient Pagan Pilgrimage! Maybe there was something else that was being occulted from our view by those who would impose a foreign religion on the indigenous practices of our people.

Read on and re-discover the hidden Pagan importance of this unique place with its amazing similarity to El Castillo where the Mayans of Central American honour the spring equinox. El Castillo is the name of their great pyramid of the Equinox and as the sunsets on its western face light and dark compliment each other creating a very special pattern of a diamond backed snake descending the pyramid. This solar magic has always been known as the "The Return of the Sun Serpent". See http://www.druidschool.com/site/1030100/page/765341 for a full story of the Equinox.

Here in Ireland, we too still have the natural magic of the land and the sun rises and sets that were known to our ancestors – such as at Newgrange, Knowth etc. But there is also an ancient walkway from Cruachan, the huge royal complex in Connaught (famous for Queen Meave, Rath Croghan) to the Reek on the western seaboard where we have unique solar magic still happening twice a year. Ireland’s Druidschool is located just a few miles from Cruachan and just over an hours drive to the Reek and from our hill on a clear day we can see the Reek standing proud on the horizon. Along the Pagan Pilgrimage causeway to the Reek many churches, abbeys and settlements were established and most of these have long since gone. In 1987 Gerry Bracken re-discovered that that the setting sun rolls down the northern slope of Croagh Patrick / Reek - this spectacular event can be seen from Bohea, 7km (just over 4m) east of the Reek on the ancient causeway from Cruachan. At Bohea there is a remarkable rock outcrop decorated with cup and ring marks that we as Druí today see as ancient sacred geometry.

This solar phenomenon lasts about twenty minutes and is seen at sunset on the 18th of April and the 24th of August. The 18th of April and the 24th of August and the 21st of December make a year of three parts. Normally, the Sun disappears behind the Reek, but on the 18th of April and the 24th of August the Sun itself climbs to the very top of the Reek and then the Sun begins to roll down the northern slope of the Reek as if it is a ball on the edge of a hill. This was what our ancestors saw – stand in the right place at the right time and see the magic of the Sun and Land.

Images of this magnificent sun set and the sacred geometry on the stone can be seen here

The Catholic Church displaced this Pagan practice with their last Sunday in July as the special day, but now that we live nearby we will visit the Bohea stone on April 18 2011 before sunset and witness this long lost phenomena for ourselves as we join in with the locals in re-establishing the connection to this ancient time cycle. It promises to be a spectacular Sunset as we also have a Full Moon on the same day! Even more fortunate is that this day is in one of our Study and Live weeks – so Druí Daltaí studying with us at this time will also get the opportunity to see this amazing event.

The conclusion offered is that this legend of Patrick was fabricated because he did not bring the Catholic faith or Christian beliefs to Ireland, he wasn’t Irish, it is highly unlikely that he could live to be 111 years of age when the usual life expectancy was maybe 50ish, he was given immense powers of traveling the entire country building churches and digging wells, killing dragons, snakes and reptiles that did not exist, burning 150 Druid books that did not exist, praying for old Arch Druids to die, killing or causing 800 Druids to be killed, having a female follower who was close to him disappear linked to a she-beast story, causing two princesses to die by his baptism, he never mentions shamrocks in his writings and he was given the totem of a shamrock long after he was dead, his title is not recognized by the leader of his own religion because no Pope would call him a saint and his fabricated importance was set up to displace a Pagan God. His most famous place was and is sacred to the Pagan God Lugh where we can still see incredible Sun and Landscape magic as our ancestors did. The reality today is that on the 17th of March many rivers are dyed green and people wear funny green hats and drink far too much alcohol especially green beer and pretend to be Irish. Do people make drunken fools of themselves on this day because they reckon that is what St Patrick did? He has out lived his usefulness to the Church that fabricated him and has become an alcoholic embarrassment for them – he is now a champion golem to excess commercialism, this is today’s true story of St Patrick.

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Comment by Magistar on March 7, 2011 at 11:26am
modern day druids are nothing more than witches as this was a splinter off of druidism, druids of old were so dark and evil sacrificeing maidens and children nothing is known about the druid system as it is a mishmash of ritual.
the old witcchcraft was a slinter off of the druids but no books were found as only those in a high position could read so the book of shadows belongs in the movies not in witchcraft.
this is why ritual was done in ryme as to remember the mystic words . so what is a modern druid nothing more realy than a witch or should i say a human in touch with the earth
Comment by Shadowdancer on March 7, 2011 at 5:04am
What is a Nemeton? Also,
under the Fire part, where you place strips into the vessel - is this vessel burning inside with fire? And
when putting the branch into ground with ribbons on it - what is and where is the "Base of the Bile"? I like how you wrote this being descriptive with how others answer and when drumming occurs, etc.
Comment by Magistar on March 7, 2011 at 3:04am
rrior:

Primal Dark Ones who defied our Gods and Goddesses
We give you this tithe and establish the boundary
Enter not this Nemeton, for this is holy ground

We likewise banish from ourselves
That which troubles us in our deepest heart
No pain, no fear, no doubt
Shall enter this Nemeton, for this is holy ground

Attendees: This is holy ground!

3 bell chimes.

I. Opening:
Lively drumming. Attendees are aspersed and censed as they enter the Nemeton.

Senior Druid:

We come here to honor the Moon in its fullness, during its height of power.

Grove Bard (chanted after Senior Druid recites opening):

Kerridwen of the Cauldron, Arianhrod the Silver-Wheel
Kerridwen stir your cauldron, Arianhrod spin your silver-wheel

Grove Seer:

You who silver the waves
You who bring forth shadow
You who are the keeper of magick
Cauldron of the Night, we honor you

All: Cauldron of the Night, we honor you

Senior Druid:

Let the song of silver open our inner selves to magick and mystery as we close our eyes, and center.

9 bell chimes alternating with group vibration chant.

II. Sacred Center:

Well:
Grove Bard:

Come we into the Well
The waters of creation, the well of wisdom
Let us pour our prayers
That the sacred waters may cleanse us
Of that we desire to relinquish

Water is poured into vessel that is passed among Grove. Bard leads:

Well Song:

We pray at the Well of Wisdom to cleanse us body and soul
We come to the Sacred Waters let your blessings be known


Fire:
Grove Seer:

Come we into the Fire
The flame of creation, the light of inspiration
Let us send our prayers
Of that we wish to transform in our lives
On the sacred smoke of our Nemeton

Prayer strips are placed into vessel that is passed among Grove. Bard leads:

Fire Chant:

Sacred fire and rising smoke raise our magick to those above
Hear our voices, we call to thee bring us Vision that we may see

Tree:
Senior Druid:

Come we into the Sacred Bile
The Tree of Life which upholds us through all worlds
Let us bind our prayers to its branches
Of that which is in our hearts
That our magick travel through the boundaries

Attendees bind a ribbon onto the prayer branch that is passed among the Grove while singing:

Full Moon Chant:

We are gathered in the light of the Moon
We do worship by the blessings of the Moon
Full in Your journey, across the starry sky
Through Well, Fire, Tree, to you our prayers rise

III. Calling the Moon:
Moderately paced drumming.

Senior Druid:

We call upon the Great Eye of Night
In our lives, bring us your mystery

All: Bring us your mystery

In our Nemeton, be here with us

All: Be here with us

In our working, lend us your magick

All: Lend us your magick

Keeper of Night, we invoke thee

All: Keeper of Night, we invoke thee

Moon of Mystery, we invoke thee

All: Moon of Mystery, we invoke thee

Muse of Magick, we invoke thee

All: Muse of Magick, we invoke thee

Lively drumming and dancing as Senior Druid focuses and directs energy raising. Branch with ribbons tied on it is driven into the Earth at the base of the Bile at culmination of energy raising.

IV. Blessing Cup:
Calming drumming.

Senior Druid:

We have come together on this even of the Full Moon, the night of increase, of magick and potential.

Let us charge and share this Horn of Blessing. As we stand here, united in circle, round as the Moon above us, may our magick be stronger by our bonds of unity, may our magick be radiant in the Silvery Light, may our magick be united as we take into ourselves the Mead of Mystery. Send forth your prayers and charge our cup with magick as it passes your lips.

Strong, slow, hypnotic drumming. Cup is passed as attendees discuss their magickal need while visualizing putting her/his goal into the mead, then drink from it.

V. Personal Working:
Attendees are instructed to do whatever personal work they will. Length of time allotted is based on situational discretion.

VI. Re-Centering:
Grove Bard calms, re-focuses and re-centers the attendees.

VII. Thanking:
Senior Druid leads round of thanks to the Moon for aiding the work and the attendees for gathering that evening.

VIII. Closing:

Senior Druid:

With our work being done, by the power of the Moon in its fullness may our magick journey onwards. This rite is ended. Let us come together and join hands as we sing:

Let Us Journey On:

Let us journey on
Kindred of the Earth
Carry the Nemeton's blessings
Into our lives and work

As we journey on
Kindred of the Earth
Carry the Nemeton's blessings
In peace to home and hearth
Comment by Magistar on March 7, 2011 at 3:02am
no hun i will give you the full moon ritual if you wish
 

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