The Intention Of Our Rite

by IAN CORRIGAN

Any Druidic ritual has as a primary intention the re-weaving of the links
between human-kind, the natural world, and the God/desses and Spirits who
support both. For thousands of years human culture lived in more or less
intimate communion with the unseen worlds. Over the centuries of European
culture these ties have been weakened, until our modern materialism is
endangering the very air and water that sustains our life. We work to
reconnect with the powers of Land, Sea and Sky, honoring the spirit that is
in them as well as their physical realities.

As with any religious path we also seek blessings for ourselves, our
families and communities. We open our hearts to the flow of divine blessing
that comes from our God/desses. We seek also to awaken that same divine
spark in our own souls, so that we can bless the world in return.

Ár nDraíocht Féin is a small part of the neoPagan movement, one of
the fastest-growing currents in modern religion. From our beginnings we
have been committed to serving the whole Pagan community. Druidic
worship is open and inclusive. We welcome Pagans of every tradition and
path, as well as those who want to learn more about Druidry or pagan ways
in general. We ask only that you respect our ways; you can expect the same
from us.

PRINCIPLES OF DRUIDIC WORSHIP

The outer form of our worship, like all ceremony, is made up of
spoken prayers, invocations and statements combined with traditional actions.
While we have reclaimed some of these from pre-Christian Europe we
do not grant them the status of revelation or scripture. All ritual speech is
made by humans to help turn our minds more effectively toward the Divine.
Druidry teaches that beautiful speech, poetry or music pleases and influences
the Powers, and so we fill our rites with these things to the best of our ability.

A central action of our rites is the giving of gifts to the Powers. This
is commonly called sacrifice (Latin: to make sacred). We teach that the God/
desses and Spirits are strengthened by our offerings, and show their gratitude
by blessing the givers. In pagan ways humans are not mere dependents of even
the greatest Deities. Rather they depend on our love and offerings as we
depend on their blessing and aid.

While it is true that the ancients offered animal and even occasional
human lives to the Powers, our modern Paganism rejects any offering that
takes life or causes injury. We offer our God/desses flowers, food, drink,
incense and scented oil, precious metals and gems, poetry and song, but never
blood.

The soul-skills that bind Pagan worship together are the techniques
of meditation and trance. By concentrating our minds on the symbols and
words of the rite, by relaxing our bodies and letting go of our internal dialogue
and by strongly visualising the rite.s energy flows and Deities we induce a
state of mind that allows contact with Inner worlds.

In every Druidic rite there will be a series of spoken instructions
intended to help induce this trance. Following these suggestions with an open
mind will deepen your experience. Remember that all such guidance is just
that; you are in control of your state of mind at all times. Yet it is through
consenting to trance that you can know our Magic best.
These three principles – ritual, sacrifice and trance combine to
produce the magic of Druidic worship.

Next: The Outline Of Druidic Rites Part One – Establishing The Grove