A History Of Neo-Paganism and Druidry: 4 – Of the following names, identify and explain the importance each has had in Neopagan history and/or the magical revival…

6 08 2017

Of the following names, identify and explain the importance each has had in Neopagan history and/or the magical revival (minimum 100 words for each):

Gerald Gardner

Gerald Gardner (1884 – 1964), a retired British civil servant, was the founder of the modern Wicca movement. He was also an anthropologist and folklorist who was very interested in magic. He spent time in the Far East and after returning to settle in Hampshire, he joined a naturist society. He claimed that, in 1939, he contacted a coven in England and was initiated into it by a woman named “Old Dorothy.” However, Ronald Hutton has demonstrated that while Dorothy Clutterbuck existed, it’s unlikely she had anything to do with Gardner. In 1949, he published a novel called “High Magic’s Aid” in order to teach what he claims he learned in the coven.

With the repeal of the Witchcraft Acts in 1951, Gardner was able to be more open about the religion. He published two more books – Witchcraft Today and The Meaning of Witchcraft, and joined Cecil Williamson at the new Museum of Witchcraft.

In my opinion, Gardner is the most influential person in the history of the Neo-Paganism. He was the one who created Wicca, and arguably sparked the beginnings of the movement. He was the creator (or reformer) of Wicca. He openly publicised Witchcraft and Francis King argues that while there may have been covens before Gardner, it was his influence which led to the massive growth of Wicca.

Aidan Kelly, creator of NROOGD writes “almost all the current vitality in the movement was sparked by…… Gardner.” He argues that Gardner “instituted a major reform” so that it was as different to the Old Religion, as the first Christians were different from the Jews. In particular, Gardner added new concepts such as focusing on the goddess, women being priestesses who can become the goddess and new ways of magic working such as the circle and raising power. He also introduced the concept of naturism in rituals.

Today Wicca is still the largest grouping within the Neo-Pagan movement, and one version of Wicca is named after Gardner himself. Despite his death, Wicca has continued to thrive and is now one of the fastest growing religions in the West. This is his legacy.

 

Robert Graves

Robert Graves (1895 – 1985), was a Celticist and novelist who wrote a couple of books that had a major influence on the direction of Neo-Paganism. The books were “The White Goddess” published in 1948 and Watch the North Wind Rise, published in 1949. Margot Adler argues that the books “had an enormous impact on people who later joined the craft” and that The White Goddess, “has had an enormous influence on women, the Witchcraft revival, and the creation of groups such as Feraferia.”

His books promoted the idea of goddess worship, matriarchy and a druidic alphabet with the months related to tree names (an idea still influential in some Celtic groups today). He emphasised poetry as a “religious invocation of the goddess” and his works were important sources for rituals and theology for Wicca, Feraferia and NROOGD. He also had an influence on the feminist movement and believed that “the return of goddess worship is the only salvation for Western civilisation.” In fact, he saw such goddess worship as an important part of British heritage.

Despite this influence, Bonewits argues that Graves is a “sloppy scholar” who caused “more bad anthropology to occur among Wiccan groups than almost any other work.

 

 

Dion Fortune

Dion Fortune (1890 – 1946), was an occultist and ceremonial magician who founded the Fraternity of the Inner Light. She was heavily influenced by Theosophy, Mediumship and the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn. She wrote many books and articles for Occult magazines. She also corresponded with Aleister Crowley and Israel Regardie.

She had a big impact on Wicca with her emphasis on “all the gods are one god, and all the goddesses are one goddess” as well as her teaching that magical workings required a masculine and feminine polarity. She was influential in making Glastonbury a central site for magic with her claim that Ascended Masters had told her that Glastonbury was once the site of a Druid College. And her writings and novels were owned by many Pagans, having a particularly strong influence on Starhawk.

Ronald Hutton said when it came to Occultism in Britain in the early 20th century, she was the “foremost female figure” in the movement.

 

Oberon Zell

Tim “Oberon” Zell (1942 – ), also known as Ravenheart, had a major influence on Neo-Paganism through his creation of the Church of All Worlds.. The CAW was born out of the Atl movement in 1967, and based on the book “Strangers in a Strange Land.” Within a few years, it had evolved into an earth centred Neo-Pagan religion “dedicated to the celebration of Life, the maximal actualisation of Human potential, and the realisation of ultimate individual freedom and personal responsibility in harmonious eco-psychic relationship with the total Biosphere of Holy Mother Earth.”

The CAW set up the Green Egg magazine which “connected all the evolving and emerging goddess and nature religions into one phenomenon, the Neo-Pagan movement.” Through the Magazine, Zell created and publicised his idea of “planet earth as deity, as a single living organism”, an idea which was later taken up by scientist James Lovelock in the Gaia Hypothesis.

Zell has also made other contributions, from the creation of Unicorns and the Grey School of Wizardry, to adopting the term “Neo Pagan” from Young Omar and being responsible for the popularity of the term “Neo-Paganism.”

 

Starhawk

Starhawk (1951 – ), an author, activist and creator of the reclaiming tradition, has probably been one of the most influential Pagans of the last 50 years. She began in the Feri tradition, but eventually created the reclaiming tradition in the 1980’s which married Feri, feminism and politics in one. She wrote two very popular books – The Spiral Dance and Dreaming the Dark, which Margot Adler says, “have perhaps reached more women and men than any other books written by a Pagan.”

In 1982, she was part of the blockade of a proposed nuclear plant. The group held the first Spiral Dance, and came together to form the Reclaiming Collective. This eclectic witchcraft movement emphasised spirituality, political action and personal empowerment. Starhawk become its most important theologian, although the movement has no set pantheon or liturgy. They teach that “all systems of oppression as interrelated and rooted in a structure of dominance and control”, that the Earth is alive, a goddess imminent in the cycles of the earth that everything is interconnected and sacred. Ecological awareness is very important, as is a non-hierarchical structure with decisions made by consensus, and the use of chanting and breathing to raise energy.

Her books, as well as the many Witch-camps run by the Reclaiming group, has “led to the creation of hundreds of covens, many of them women’s covens, not to mention an enormous amount of political activism, much of it with a feminist tinge.” Starhawk has taught about ritual and leadership all over the western world. She also wrote an essay on the persecution of witches called “The Burning Times” which was very political, and she has been arrested more than 20 times.

 

Isaac Bonewits

Isaac Bonewits (1949 – 2010), a magician and occultist, is best known as the creator of ADF. He started out in the RDNA as a priest in 1969, and later became the Arch-Druid of the NRDNA. He wrote the “Druid Chronicles” for the RDNA and achieved a degree in Magic from UC Berkeley. He has written influential books including Real Magic, Bonewits’ Essential Guide to Druidism and Neopagan Rites: A Guide to Creating Public Rituals That Work. He has often had a stormy relationship with Wicca because of his emphasis on scholarship. He also worked with others to create the Aquarian Anti-Defamation League which fights against anti-occultism laws and for Witches religious rights.

In 1983, he founded ADF, becoming its first Arch-Druid, as he wanted to create a Neo-Pagan religion, inspired by what the Paleo-Pagans actually did, and that was therefore based on scholarship and focused on excellence. This has now grown into the largest Druid organisation in America, and like Wicca, it is a legacy that has survived the death of its founder.

 

Z Budapest

Zsuzsanna Budapest (1940 – ) is a very influential member of the feminist Wicca movement. After moving from Hungary to Los Angeles, she became involved in the Women’s Liberation Movement. In 1971 she set up the Susan B Anthony Coven, a coven that has since led to many others and by 1976 it had around 20-40 members, with over 300 others attending from time to time. She also set up a shop called The Feminist Wicca.

She is very outspoken and combined spirituality with politics. She was arrested for engaging in a tarot reading in 1975. She used the trial to bring Witchcraft to the public’s attention. She believed in Matriarchy and claimed that Wicca was a women’s religion not for men.

Her biggest influence, however, was in the creation of Dianic Witchcraft in the early 1970’s. This was a women’s only mystery tradition, which focused on the life passages of women, particularly the “five blood mysteries.” It emphasised belief in the goddess as Maiden, Mother and Crone, and held healing rituals designed to counter the effects of Patriarchy. Dianic Witchcraft, along with the Feri tradition, was to later influence Starhawk.

 

Carl Jung

Carl Jung (1875 – 1961) was a psychiatrist who founded analytical psychology. He has had a wide influence on many subject areas including anthropology, philosophy and religion. Though he was not a Pagan, his ideas about Archetypes, the Collective Unconscious and Synchronicity have had a major influence on the beliefs that Neopagans hold about Deity. In particular, the view of gods as archetypes in the collective unconscious.

He believed spirituality and religion was important, that our goal in life was to fulfil our inner potential and that at the heart of religion is a process of transformation or Individuation. He recommended spirituality and religion as a path to this Individuation.

 

Bibilography

Ellis, Peter B. The Druids. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans Pub Co, 1998. Print.

Adler, Margot. Drawing down the moon witches, Druids, goddess-worshippers, and other pagans in America today. New York, N.Y: Penguin/Arkana, 2006. Print.

Hutton, Ronald. The Stations of the Sun: A History of the Ritual Year in Britain. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1996. Print.

Bonewits, Isaac. “Defining Paganism: Paleo-, Meso-, and Neo-.” Web.

Bonewits, Isaac. “Frequently Asked Questions about Neopagan Druidism.” Web.

Bonewits, Isaac. “The Origins of Ár nDraíocht Féin.” Web.

Bonewits, Isaac. “What Neopagans Believe.” Web.

Bonewits, Isaac. “The Reformed Druids of North America and their Offshoots.” Web.

Hopman, Ellen Evert. “The Origins of the Henge of Keltria.” Web.

Meith, Vickie, and Howard Meith. “The Origins of the Celtic Traditionalist Order of Druids.” Web.

Thuin, Dylan Ap. “The Origins of the Insular Order of Druids.” Web

https://www.britannica.com/topic/The-Golden-Bough

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Graves

http://www.keltria.org/

http://pss.uvm.edu/ppp/articles/holgreens.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yule

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Handfasting_(Neopaganism)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dion_Fortune

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hermetic_Order_of_the_Golden_Dawn

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hermeticism

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ceremonial_magic

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carl_Jung





A History Of Neo-Paganism and Druidry: 3 – Describe several examples of authentic folk customs absorbed into Neopaganism, and describe how they have been adapted.

6 08 2017

Describe several examples of authentic folk customs absorbed into Neopaganism, and describe how they have been adapted. (minimum 300 words)

There are a variety of authentic folk customs that have been absorbed into Neo-Paganism, however it is arguable whether they go right back to Paleo-Pagan times. These can mostly be seen at the festival times.

The midwinter festival of Yule has incorporated a range of authentic folk customs into Neopaganism. The Roman festival of Saturnalia that occurred at this time include elements such as gift-giving, feasting and decorating the home with evergreens. Decorating with evergreens or mistletoe may also date back to Druid and Viking periods. It is also possible that the folk tradition of the Yule Log may date back to Paleo-pagan times and has been incorporated in modern heathenry.

Imbolc too has many folk customs that modern Neopagans include in their rituals. These include the use of candles or candle-making because the date was turned into Candlemas by the Church. Many Neopagans make a bed and doll of Brighid, a Brighids cross and leave cloth outside the window sill for Brighid to bless. These are folk customs that can be traced back at least several hundred years. Modern heathens may bake cakes and put them into the earth at this time, following the words of Bede in his writings on the Anglo-Saxon month of Solmonath.

Beltane is another festival with revived folk customs. There are early references to the use of fire at the festival, such as “lucky fire i.e two fires Druids used to make with great incantations, and they used to bring the cattle against the diseases of the year to those fires” and “they used to drive cattle between them.” Another reference says, “a fire was kindled in his [Bel] name at the beginning of summer always, and cattle were driven between two fires.” Today many neo-pagans hold bonfires on this day and bonfires have been recorded on Beltane right up to the 19th century, and even today in Edinburgh. Similarly, the customs of “Bringing in the May” and the use of a Maypole can both be traced back to folk customs over 700 years old.

Lughnasadh or Lammas, is the festival beginning the harvest in Neopaganism. There are references to “Lammas” as a celebration of first fruits in the Anglo-Saxon chronicles and Lughnasadh has a long history in Ireland, originally being a celebration of the goddess Tailitu. The blessing of bread in churches is a folk custom that has been adopted into Neopaganism as modern Neopagans bake bread and offer some of it to the gods on this date. It was a date when large assemblies were often held, and some modern heathen groups hold an annual meeting on this date too.

Samhain contains many older folk customs that have survived thanks to the popularity of Halloween. The carving of pumpkins originated as the folk custom of carving turnips, and many Neopagans continue the practice today. Divination practices such as casting nuts into a bonfire or throwing apple skins over one’s shoulder are folk customs that have been absorbed into Neopaganism today.

Finally, there are other authentic folk customs which have been adopted into Neopaganism such as the use of hand-fasting in marriage ceremonies. This custom can be found in Scotland and the word appears in Old English too.

Bibilography

Ellis, Peter B. The Druids. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans Pub Co, 1998. Print.

Adler, Margot. Drawing down the moon witches, Druids, goddess-worshippers, and other pagans in America today. New York, N.Y: Penguin/Arkana, 2006. Print.

Hutton, Ronald. The Stations of the Sun: A History of the Ritual Year in Britain. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1996. Print.

Bonewits, Isaac. “Defining Paganism: Paleo-, Meso-, and Neo-.” Web.

Bonewits, Isaac. “Frequently Asked Questions about Neopagan Druidism.” Web.

Bonewits, Isaac. “The Origins of Ár nDraíocht Féin.” Web.

Bonewits, Isaac. “What Neopagans Believe.” Web.

Bonewits, Isaac. “The Reformed Druids of North America and their Offshoots.” Web.

Hopman, Ellen Evert. “The Origins of the Henge of Keltria.” Web.

Meith, Vickie, and Howard Meith. “The Origins of the Celtic Traditionalist Order of Druids.” Web.

Thuin, Dylan Ap. “The Origins of the Insular Order of Druids.” Web

https://www.britannica.com/topic/The-Golden-Bough

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Graves

http://www.keltria.org/

http://pss.uvm.edu/ppp/articles/holgreens.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yule

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Handfasting_(Neopaganism)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dion_Fortune

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hermetic_Order_of_the_Golden_Dawn

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hermeticism

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ceremonial_magic

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carl_Jung





A History of Neo-Paganism and Druidry: 2 – Name and describe several of the literary sources that contributed to Neopaganism in the first quarter of the 20th century, and discuss their impact on its development.

6 08 2017

Name and describe several of the literary sources that contributed to Neopaganism in the first quarter of the 20th century, and discuss their impact on its development. (minimum 300 words)

In 1921, Margaret Murray, an Egyptologist, folklorist and anthropologist, published “The Witch Cult in Western Europe. In the book, she looked at the Inquisition’s witch trial documents and argued that in Pre-Christian times, the ancient religion of Europe was Witchcraft. She argued that they had a deity who could incarnate in male and female forms. The male being a two-faced horned god, and the female being named Diana who was the leader of witches. She said that it was a fertility cult with the god dying and being reborn according to “the cycle of the seasons and the cycle of crops.” She said they had eight main festivals called Sabbats and met in covens of 13. Her writings had a major influence on later Paganism, especially on Gerald Gardner and his new religion of Wicca. In fact, it formed a major basis of the myth of Wicca. However, her theories have been discredited by scholars, especially by Norman Cohn.

Another very influential book was “The Golden Bough”, published by anthropologist James Frazer. This was originally published in 1890 but again in 1900 and 1906-15. Frazer argued that ancient Pagan religions were originally fertility cults. This study of comparative religion, looked at a large number of spiritual beliefs and practices worldwide and argued for an evolutionary progression “from magic to religion to science.” His theories are now rejected by scholars but still had a major impact in contributing to the Myth of Wicca.

Finally, is Arcadia: The Gospel of the Witches by Charles Leland, published in 1899. In this work, he describes a Pagan religion in Italy which had apparently survived through the ages and included a Witch cult worshipping the goddess Diana and her daughter, Aradia, who was sent to earth to teach Witchcraft. Again, it had a big influence on Gardner and through him Wicca. In particular, passages influenced Doreen Valiente in writing the modern Wiccan rite “The Charge of the Goddess.” It is also where the often-used phrase “the Old Religion” first appears. A final influence was the books emphasis on women having an equal or superior role to play. It has therefore played a prominent role in feminist versions of Wicca.

Bibilography

Ellis, Peter B. The Druids. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans Pub Co, 1998. Print.

Adler, Margot. Drawing down the moon witches, Druids, goddess-worshippers, and other pagans in America today. New York, N.Y: Penguin/Arkana, 2006. Print.

Hutton, Ronald. The Stations of the Sun: A History of the Ritual Year in Britain. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1996. Print.

Bonewits, Isaac. “Defining Paganism: Paleo-, Meso-, and Neo-.” Web.

Bonewits, Isaac. “Frequently Asked Questions about Neopagan Druidism.” Web.

Bonewits, Isaac. “The Origins of Ár nDraíocht Féin.” Web.

Bonewits, Isaac. “What Neopagans Believe.” Web.

Bonewits, Isaac. “The Reformed Druids of North America and their Offshoots.” Web.

Hopman, Ellen Evert. “The Origins of the Henge of Keltria.” Web.

Meith, Vickie, and Howard Meith. “The Origins of the Celtic Traditionalist Order of Druids.” Web.

Thuin, Dylan Ap. “The Origins of the Insular Order of Druids.” Web

https://www.britannica.com/topic/The-Golden-Bough

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Graves

http://www.keltria.org/

http://pss.uvm.edu/ppp/articles/holgreens.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yule

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Handfasting_(Neopaganism)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dion_Fortune

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hermetic_Order_of_the_Golden_Dawn

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hermeticism

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ceremonial_magic

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carl_Jung





A History of Neo-Paganism and Druidry: 1 – Define Paleopaganism, Mesopaganism, and Neopaganism, giving examples of each.

6 08 2017

Define Paleopaganism, Mesopaganism, and Neopaganism, giving examples of each. (minimum 100 words for each)

The Roman term “Paganus” was originally a derogatory term for a country dweller. It is thought that people living in rural areas were slower to adopt the new religion of Christianity in the Roman Empire and continued following the older polytheistic and animistic religions for a long time after the official conversion and therefore they were called Pagans. Today Paganism is being revived as a polytheistic or pantheistic religion. Isaac Bonewits distinguishes between three types of Pagans, however these are not clear categories and can overlap at times.

First are Paleo-Pagans which are the “original, polytheistic, nature centred faiths of tribal Europe, Africa, Asia, the America’s, Oceania and Australia, when they were practiced as in tact belief systems.” He also adds the modern practices of Taoism, Shino and Hinduism to this list and argues that billions of people are following them today. Examples of older Paleo-Pagan religions include the religions of the Celtic, Anglo-Saxon, Norse, Greek and Roman religions being practiced 2000 years ago.

Second is Meso-Paganism, which is a “term for a variety of movements both organised and unorganised, started as attempts to recreate, revive or continue what their founders thought were the best aspects of the Paleo-Pagan ways of their ancestors.” However, other worldviews that were “monotheistic, dualistic or non-theistic” also had a big influence on these, thanks to the cultural dominance of Christianity, Islam, Zoroastrianism and Buddhism. Examples could include Freemasonry, Rosicrucianism, Theosophy, Spiritualism, Voudoun, Christo-Paganism, Mahayana Buddhism and Thelema. It also includes Revival Druidry traditions such as the Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids.

Third is Neo-Paganism, which, is a “term for a variety of movements both organised and (usually) disorganised, started since 1960ce or so (though they had literary roots going back to the mid 1800’s), as attempts to recreate, revive or continue what their founders thought were the best aspects of the Paleo-Pagan ways of their ancestors, blended with modern humanistic, pluralist and inclusionary ideals, while consciously striving to eliminate as much as possible of the traditional western monotheism, dualism and puritanism.” Neo-Pagans tend to share beliefs in multiple gods and goddesses, emphasise the immanence of deity, be committed to environmentalism and perform rituals and magic, while avoiding racism, sexism and homophobia. Examples include the Church of All Worlds, Wicca, Asatru, Fyrn-Sidu, ADF Druidism and Reconstructionist groups such as Gaol Naofa, Nova Roma, Dun Brython and Hellenismos. The term Neo-Paganism was popularised in the 1960’s and 70’s by Oberon Zell of the Church of All Worlds.

Bibilography

Ellis, Peter B. The Druids. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans Pub Co, 1998. Print.

Adler, Margot. Drawing down the moon witches, Druids, goddess-worshippers, and other pagans in America today. New York, N.Y: Penguin/Arkana, 2006. Print.

Hutton, Ronald. The Stations of the Sun: A History of the Ritual Year in Britain. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1996. Print.

Bonewits, Isaac. “Defining Paganism: Paleo-, Meso-, and Neo-.” Web.

Bonewits, Isaac. “Frequently Asked Questions about Neopagan Druidism.” Web.

Bonewits, Isaac. “The Origins of Ár nDraíocht Féin.” Web.

Bonewits, Isaac. “What Neopagans Believe.” Web.

Bonewits, Isaac. “The Reformed Druids of North America and their Offshoots.” Web.

Hopman, Ellen Evert. “The Origins of the Henge of Keltria.” Web.

Meith, Vickie, and Howard Meith. “The Origins of the Celtic Traditionalist Order of Druids.” Web.

Thuin, Dylan Ap. “The Origins of the Insular Order of Druids.” Web

https://www.britannica.com/topic/The-Golden-Bough

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Graves

http://www.keltria.org/

http://pss.uvm.edu/ppp/articles/holgreens.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yule

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Handfasting_(Neopaganism)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dion_Fortune

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hermetic_Order_of_the_Golden_Dawn

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hermeticism

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ceremonial_magic

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carl_Jung





Liturgy 1.16 – Describe how ADF liturgy corresponds with your personal or group practice.

23 07 2017

Describe how ADF liturgy corresponds with your personal or group practice. (minimum 100 words)

I follow the ADF Core Order of Ritual structure for my rituals at each of the eight high days of the year, as well as for my New Moon celebrations. My altar is focused around the Fire, Well and Tree. I follow an Anglo-Saxon hearth culture primarily so my ritual symbolism and wording is focused on Norse/ Anglo-Saxon imagery. I honour the Anglo-Saxon gods, equate the Well with the Well of Wyrd and the World Tree with Eormensyl. I call the Spirits of Nature “aelfe.” I honour Nerthus as the Earth Mother and choose Anglo Saxon deities as the focus of the key offerings at each High Day. I don’t create a boundary, but I do carry fire around the ritual area and ask Thunor to hallow the area and keep away any unfriendly wights. I take the Omen by using the Anglo-Saxon runes and I brew and use Mead as the Waters of Life. Mead is also my primary form of sacrifice to the gods and spirits. My daily practice is usually focused on a brief prayer, and maybe an offering of incense, to the Ancestors so I don’t use the ADF ritual at those times.

Bonewits, Isaac. Neopagan Rites: A Guide to Creating Public Rituals that Work. Minneapolis: Llewellyn Publications, 2007. Print.

ADF. “Standard Liturgical Outline.” ADF. Web.

Bonewits, Isaac. “Step by Step through A Druid Worship Ceremony.” ADF. Web.

Brooks, Arnold. “A Druidic Ritual Primer.” ADF. Web

Brooks, Arnold. “Goals of Group Ritual.” ADF. Web.

Corrigan, Ian. “The ADF Outline of Worship: A Briefing for Newcomers.” ADF. Web. 

Corrigan, Ian. “The Intentions of Drudic Ritual.” ADF. Web.

Corrigan, Ian. “The Worlds and the Kindreds.” ADF. Web.

Paradox. “Sacred Space, an Exploration of the Triple Center.” ADF. Web.

Thomas, Kirk. “The Nature of Sacrifice.” ADF. Web.





Liturgy 1.15 – Describe possible cultural variances for elements discussed in questions 3 through 14 above.

23 07 2017

Describe possible cultural variances for elements discussed in questions 3 through 14 above. (minimum 100 words)

Centre/ Gates – The centre, gates and gatekeeper will vary depending on the hearth culture. For example, in a Hellenic hearth culture, the tree may be replaced with a Mountain/ Stone representing Mt Olympus. In a Norse hearth culture, the tree will be seen as Yggdrasil and the Well as the Well of Wyrd, while the gatekeeper may be the god Heimdall and there may be gates to the nine worlds. In a Celtic hearth culture, the tree will be the Bile, the Well will be the Well of Segais and the gatekeeper will often be Manannan Mac Lyr.

Sacred spaces – Sacred spaces may depend on the hearth culture, with Celtic and Germanic hearth cultures focusing more on liminal spaces and sacred groves, while Hellenic and Roman hearth culture view temples as the sacred spaces.

Earth Mother – The name of the Earth Mother will change with each hearth culture. She will be called Gaia in a Hellenic hearth culture, Jord in a Norse hearth culture, Nerthus in an Anglo-Saxon hearth culture and Terra Mater in a Roman hearth culture. She may be considered more as the goddess of the earth in Norse, Anglo-Saxon or Hellenic hearth cultures, while a local goddess of sovereignty and the waters in a Celtic hearth culture.

Fire/Water – In a Norse hearth culture, the basic elements of the universe will be seen as the Fire of Muspelheim and the Ice of Niflheim. In a Celtic culture, these elements will be Fire and Water. There are also different goddesses of fire depending on the culture. For example, in the Irish Celtic hearth culture, the fire may represent the goddess Brighid, while in the Hellenic hearth culture the fire represents Hestia, and in the Roman hearth culture, it represents Vesta.

Fire/ Well and Tree – The Well is often seen differently depending on the hearth culture. In Norse and Anglo-Saxon hearth cultures, the well is equated with the three Wells of Wyrd, Mimir and Hvergelmir, while in the Celtic hearth culture it is the Well of Segais. Similarly, the name of the tree is different, with the Norse calling it Yggdrasil, the Anglo-Saxons calling it Eormensyl and the Celts calling it Bile.

Outdwellers – In Norse and Anglo-Saxon hearth cultures, the outdwellers will be seen as the Giants, the Jotnar and perhaps deities such as Loki, Hel or the world serpent. They are the forces of chaos held at bay by Thor. In the Hellenic hearth culture, they will be seen as the Titans, the primordial powers of creation. In the Celtic hearth culture, they will be identified with the Formorians who were defeated by the Tuathe De Danaan.

Three Kindreds – The three Kindreds may be seen slightly differently depending on the hearth culture. Each hearth culture will have their own pantheons with their own gods and there will often not be a standard deity for the same thing across all cultures. For instance, there is no deity for fire in Norse and Anglo-Saxon cultures, and there is no definitive deity of the Sun in Celtic cultures. The particular ancestors honoured in each hearth culture may differ, such as the Roman Lares Familiaris and the Norse Disir. Finally, the names of the spirits are different in each hearth culture, from the Anglo-Saxon elves and dwarves, to the Hellenic dryads to the Celtic Sidhe and Fae.

Filling Out Cosmic Picture – In a Celtic hearth culture, the cosmos may be viewed as three realms – land, sea and sky. In a Norse or Anglo-Saxon culture, the cosmos may be viewed as seven or nine worlds. In a Hellenic hearth culture, the cosmos may be viewed as made up of the Underworld of Hades, the middle world and the Upper World of Mt Olympus.

Key offerings – The focuses for key offerings will change depending on the hearth culture. For example, in at Samhain, one might honour Odin and Hel in a Norse hearth culture, while one honours the Dagda, Morrigan or Donn in a Celtic hearth culture, and Hades in a Hellenic hearth culture

Sacrifice – Sacrifices may also be different in each hearth culture. In Celtic and Norse hearth cultures, there may be more focus on offering metallic objects such as broken weapons or mead as a libation, while in Hellenic and Roman hearth cultures, the offerings may focus on olive oil or wine.

Omen – In Celtic hearth cultures, the Omen is usually taken using Oghams, while in Norse and Anglo-Saxon hearth cultures runes are used. In Hellenic and Roman Hearth cultures auguries using the flight of birds may be used.

Blessing Cup – Mead is considered a sacred drink in many hearth cultures, but especially in Celtic and Germanic hearth cultures. Similarly, wine may be used in more Mediterranean hearth cultures such as the Hellenic and Roman ones. These sacred drinks are often used as the “Waters of Life” in the Blessing Cup.

Bonewits, Isaac. Neopagan Rites: A Guide to Creating Public Rituals that Work. Minneapolis: Llewellyn Publications, 2007. Print.

ADF. “Standard Liturgical Outline.” ADF. Web.

Bonewits, Isaac. “Step by Step through A Druid Worship Ceremony.” ADF. Web.

Brooks, Arnold. “A Druidic Ritual Primer.” ADF. Web

Brooks, Arnold. “Goals of Group Ritual.” ADF. Web.

Corrigan, Ian. “The ADF Outline of Worship: A Briefing for Newcomers.” ADF. Web. 

Corrigan, Ian. “The Intentions of Drudic Ritual.” ADF. Web.

Corrigan, Ian. “The Worlds and the Kindreds.” ADF. Web.

Paradox. “Sacred Space, an Exploration of the Triple Center.” ADF. Web.

Thomas, Kirk. “The Nature of Sacrifice.” ADF. Web.





Liturgy 1.14 – Discuss your understanding of the Blessing Cup, or “Return Flow”.

23 07 2017

Discuss your understanding of the Blessing Cup, or “Return Flow”. (minimum 100 words)

After we have offered our praise and sacrifices to the deities and spirits, the focus and direction of energy within the ritual shifts to become a “return flow”. The blessings of the gods and spirits are invoked through each gate and focused into a horn or cup. The liquid contained in this vessel is what ADF calls the “Waters of Life.” The drink is blessed and “charged with the energies of the one(s) being worshipped.” Then, as the participants drink the liquid, they receive into themselves the return power, energies and divine gifts offered by the deities and spirits. It is very important to be receptive in order to receive the blessings. This is achieved in ADF ritual through three stages – calling for the blessings, hallowing and receiving the blessings, and then affirming the blessings.

Bonewits, Isaac. Neopagan Rites: A Guide to Creating Public Rituals that Work. Minneapolis: Llewellyn Publications, 2007. Print.

ADF. “Standard Liturgical Outline.” ADF. Web.

Bonewits, Isaac. “Step by Step through A Druid Worship Ceremony.” ADF. Web.

Brooks, Arnold. “A Druidic Ritual Primer.” ADF. Web

Brooks, Arnold. “Goals of Group Ritual.” ADF. Web.

Corrigan, Ian. “The ADF Outline of Worship: A Briefing for Newcomers.” ADF. Web. 

Corrigan, Ian. “The Intentions of Drudic Ritual.” ADF. Web.

Corrigan, Ian. “The Worlds and the Kindreds.” ADF. Web.

Paradox. “Sacred Space, an Exploration of the Triple Center.” ADF. Web.

Thomas, Kirk. “The Nature of Sacrifice.” ADF. Web.