lesson 1 from polytheistic druidry

http://druidnetwork.org/what-is-druidry/learning-resources/polytheist/lesson-one/

This is a free course of 20 lessons. I have been wanting a more organized way, yet gentle entry into spiritual study. ADF felt like I was supposed to figure it all out at once, which is clearly difficult.

Some questions for you to think about:

What are the popular images (good and bad) associated with the Celtic countries and peoples? What feelings do these images evoke for you? Cernunnos, The Morrigan.  Cernunnos is good feelings – money, fertility, rambling. the Morrigan seems very scary to me, and not one to involve oneself with lightly – these feelings, oddly, are how I think of Odin.
The land mass now called England was once inhabited by Celtic peoples, yet we no longer think of it as Celtic. Genetic tests have shown that quite a few people who consider themselves English are descendants of the Iron Age tribes. What are the factors that form or challenge both personal and national identity? What makes a person Celtic? Is it being descended from a particular bloodline, or being able to speak one of the languages, or having been raised within a certain culture, or having a spiritual relationship with certain Gods or spirits? Is a combination of two or more of these factors, or something else entirely?  I tend toward Universalism, and while I do not consider myself Celtic (although I do have Scots and Welsh ancestors) . I do not think bloodline is important – many societies have very open adoption and clearly once adopted by a family, it is by the whole line.  I do think that heritage does play a part in whether you consider yourself as a Celt though, being what you are most familar with, or you get interested in a certain ancestor or ancestor’s culture. I think that there is a chicken and egg question with the language. but I do think one is drawn to certain Gods (or the Gods draw certain people) and that is compelling. People get drawn to music or an aspect of a culture which can lead to deep engagement to the point of calling themselves part of that culture. As culture is a living breathing expanding and contracting thing, I think all these things have a part.

A practical task:

Try to find out something about the tribe that occupied the place you live in during the Iron Age. There may be items in local museums to look at, old hill forts you could visit, or books to read about any of the more prominent members of your local tribe.

The Washoe and Northern Paiute lived here then. Wovoka, the founder of the Ghost Dance religion was a Northern Paiute.

My first readathon day

I didn’t finish nearly as much of Capt. Bluebear as I thought I would. I also didn’t participate in the other online things as much and I realized that I have a lot of “readathon” days only they aren’t 24 hours long. So I think I will do it again, and try to do the real 24 hours. And prepare better! 🙂

I also think I will pick shorter books that perhaps require less attention. Capt. Bluebear is an epic tale set in an alternate universe with many hilarious, unpredictable things happening.  I can’t think of a book to compare it to – sort of like Ulysses (by Homer, not James Joyce) with every fantasy world you have ever thought of tossed in. And it is 700 pages long. I got over halfway done, but feel like a piker!

To take a break I watched an absolutely dreadful movie called Unrelated. Apparently critics loved it but WHY? It is a bunch of people wandering around having boring conversations. The prim.ary character is a clinically depressed woman who is haning around with the teenagers in this summer home in Italy.  She thinks she is having a flirtation with the son of one of the people whose villa she is staying at. I saw no indication that this was reciprocated at all. Eventually she cries, talking with her friend and is no longer clinically depressed. Ye Gods. Tom Hiddleston dances wildly in a  disco at one point. That is the highlight.