celtic paganism, celtic reconstructionism, Erynn Rowan Laurie, Faery Seership, gaelic traditionalism, gaelic traditionalist, Maman Brigitte, Ogam: Weaving Word Wisdom, Orion Foxwood, RJ Stewart, theology
Go to the source.
This has been my philosophy on all things spiritual for many years. It is an impulse that lead me to Celtic Reconstructionism in the first place. I wanted to learn as much as I could about the Pagan Celts, from as many sources as I could. Don’t get me wrong, a thorough study of Celtic lore is invaluable, and there is plenty out there to learn. But I want a heartfelt, passionate education not just an academic one. Go to the source! What did the idea of “source” mean to pagan Celts? What does it mean to me? What did they see as the source for their emotions, cosmology, and life? What do I see as the source for my emotions, cosmology, and life? What if they differ in substantial ways? And if they do, how do I have a comprehensive spirituality without making apologies for “insulting Celtic culture”? Can I still call myself a Celtic Reconstructionist? It was as if a venerable old Druid was tapping me on the shoulder saying, “You must unlearn what you have learned”.
An experience I had a few years ago seems to be when a lot of these questions started to surface. I had hiked to the top of a pinnacle behind Pikes Peak and did some prayers to Brighid. I had been feeling a decided lack of imbas in my practice lately and wanted to re-connect. Right after the prayer was over I noticed a group of swallows flying around the pinnacle catching the bugs that were riding the thermals off the sun drenched granite. Their wings literally cut the wind and you can hear the sound of it. After loosing myself in the experience of watching the swallows, it hit me. I must approach a time like this with no expectations, and no pre-conceived notions about what is spiritual and what is not. The seed that was planted that day is coming to harvest in my life. I realize that much of my time spent as a Celtic Reconstructionist has been putting my beliefs and experiences into a “Celtic” box and a “Non-Celtic” box. As long as I do this there is no possibility of a fully integrated spirituality. Keep reading . . .