The Biggest Magical Operation Ever Carried out on Earth | Philip Carr-Gomm’s Weblog

Biggest Magical Operation Ever Carried out on Earth

The dragon rises! Photo Carlton Campbell

dragon rises! Photo Carlton Campbell

Friday, Stephanie and I drove to Glastonbury to participate in the
Warrior’s Call Pagan Anti-Fracking ritual that was scheduled for
Saturday. I had been a little concerned because 1800 people had said
they were coming and I was aware of the irony of having people using
fossil fuels to get to Glastonbury to work a ritual designed to protect
the Earth from pollution. However, sometimes it is necessary to make a
strong statement, and perhaps to do powerful magic, and this
Glastonbury initiative felt important. We combined it with a long
overdue visit to OBOD’s Touchstone editor
Penny Billington and its inimitable illustrator Arthur ZZ

many of the 1800 people would actually turn up, especially when the
forecast was for rain? Damh the Bard had spotted members in Australia
clicking the ‘I’m coming!’ button on Facebook, so we knew some would be
coming astrally, and in fact astral travel made up the bulk of
participants. About 1500 flew on the wings of thought and intention,
and only about 300 were there on the lower field of the Tor, just above
Dion Fortune’s (now Geoffrey Ashe’s) house. But this was a good number
– enough to give a real sense of solidarity and energy, without so many
no-one would hear what was being said – which I had feared if 1800 had
come. The police had been worried about numbers too, and had phoned us
and appeared before the ritual began. But they were reassured and went

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The Very (Very!) Basics of Druid Ritual | Solitary Druid Fellowship

The Very (Very!) Basics of Druid Ritual | Solitary Druid Fellowship.


The Very (Very!) Basics of Druid Ritual

Since taking over as SDF organizer, I’ve received a lot of very basic questions about druid ritual: What direction should I face during my devotionals? What types of sacrifice should I make? What color candles should I use?

I’m delighted to answer these questions, of course, and they’ve been making me remember fondly my own first rituals as a druid. When I joined ADF, I was new to paganism in general and not just druidry. Everything was completely new.  Because I was raised Catholic, I was comfortable with ADF’s requirement that a standard liturgy be used for High Days in public ritual and on the Dedicant Path—but I was a solitary then, too, and more than a two-hour drive away from any other ADF Druids. I didn’t even know what a ritual should look like.

In short, I had no idea what I was doing.

I started with the altar. Seems like a good place to start, right, the heart of the home practice? And I’ll confess that I’m fond of stuff. I’d never make a good Buddhist, because I’m awfully attached to material things, and paganism offers a plethora of thingsto choose from. So I made a list of altar-goods, and my (very patient) husband and I made the trek into Santa Fe to hit Target, Pier 1, and the craft store.

After spending an inordinate amount of time choosing the perfect miniature bowl to act as my well, the prettiest simple candle holders for my Three Kindred candles, and a box of pillar candles to act as hearth fire, I headed home prepared to deck out my cheap TV-tray altar in its finest. I set up a mesquite branch in a fancy glass, filled my well with water from the acequia that ran under my doorstep, and proudly displayed my hearth-fire candle on a willow ware saucer.


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Bardic tradition and relationship

Bardic tradition and relationship

By Nimue Brown

When we talk about bard stuff, the emphasis tends to be on original creation, be that in song, poetry, story making or wider expressions of creativity. We lose sight sometimes of bard craft in the moment, and that old tradition of sharing words and music. There are two sides to having a tradition, of which original creativity is only one. Obviously you need people to make things, or there are no stories to tell or songs to sing. In order for there to be a tradition, other people need to pick up those songs and stories and share them on, keeping them alive far beyond the death of the originator.

I grew up steeped in the folk tradition, and I know a lot of material that has been through countless unnamed other hands. To be truly part of the folk tradition is to disappear. The songs and stories live on, the people gracefully melt away. Those songs change and evolve over time, something visible in the many variants of many older ones. Change is part of the living quality of tradition.

As a performer, I dedicate far more of my time to other people’s material than to creating my own. I’m very much on the maintenance side of these traditions, not an innovator. I sing and play traditional material, and also things written by people I know. It raises some interesting issues for me. I quite often change bits. I’ll replace archaic words with things more likely to make sense to my audience. I’ll change gender to make songs fit me, or I’ll change the meaning of a song simply by singing it as a woman. Richard Marx’s Hazard becomes a story of prejudice against lesbians if I sing it the way he wrote it! Damh the Bard’s Obsession is a very different song if I sing it, just because it is me, and not him. There are songs I’ve felt comfortable tweaking and adapting, and songs where I would not change a detail of arrangement. There are songs I do not sing, much as I love them because I do not feel I can honour them. Raglan Road, would be a case in point.

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Picture of the Day: Korean Buddhist Statue Open To the Public for the First Time In 1,200 Years | ROK Drop

Picture of the Day: Korean Buddhist Statue Open To the Public for the First Time In 1,200 Years | ROK Drop.

After much debate, organizers of the Tripitaka Koreana Festival 2013 decided on Sept. 13, 2013 to open to the public the Buddha statue carved on a rock cliff at Haein Temple in Hapcheon, 354 kilometers southeast of Seoul, during the 45-day festival that begins on Sept. 27. The statue, believed to be from the Unified Silla period (668–935), was accessible only to monks for prayers for 1,200 years. – See more at:



Well Done Dr. Seigfried… Asatru Added to Religion Stylebook

Asatru Added to Religion Stylebook and Why Journalist Engagement Matters

Jason Pitzl-Waters — September 4, 2013

Back in July, PRI’s The World did a story on the U.S. Dept. of Veteran’s Affairs approving the Thor’s Hammer emblem for veteran’s grave markers and headstones (here’s The Wild Hunt’s reporting on that story). The story didn’t interview any Heathens, was somewhat flippant towards the faith, and included a picture of someone dressed like the comic book/movie version of Thor. This led Dr. Karl E.H. Seigfried of the Norse Mythology Blog to lodge a (entirely justified) complaint campaign, and it ultimately pushed PRI to do a somewhat more respectful follow-up to their original piece. Now, this incident has led to what might be an even bigger win for practitioners of Asatru, inclusion in the Religion Newswriters Association’s official Religion Stylebook. At the Norse Mythology Blog Dr. Seigfried, who wrote the stylebook entires, explains how this came about.

“[Religion Newswriters Association President] Ann Rogers. After reading about my interactions with Public Radio international over its poorly researched and disrespectful coverage of Ásatrú (“Æsir Faith,” the modern iteration of Old Germanic religion), Ms. Rodgers asked me to pick ten terms important to Ásatrú and write definitions for the online guide. Before my submissions, the guide contained no entries related to Ásatrú. The Religion Stylebook is an important resource for journalists in the United States. […] It’s not every day that the head of a major journalists’ association asks you to literally define a religion for the nation’s mainstream media, and I took this responsibility very seriously. I modeled my definitions on those already in the Religion Stylebook and tried to match the selection of terms, lengths of definitions and writing style to entries for other religions already in the book. Of course, I could have written much more on each of the terms I selected, but I matched the amount of text to equivalent terms already included from other faiths.”

The ten terms added to the stylebook include Æsir, Ásatrú, blót, Eddas, and goði, and are live on the stylebook’s site as we speak. Dr. Seigfried worked with Heathens in Iceland, Germany, and the United States to shape the definitions he would use.

– See more at:

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OBOD – Great article from the OBOD.

The Foundations of Modern Druid Spirituality

by Daniel Carpenter

MA in Religious Studies, University of Wales, Cardiff, 2006

This study explores the phenomenon of modern Druidry, one of the most rapidly-expanding forms of alternative spirituality in Britain today. It investigates why, despite the fact that there is so little verifiable evidence relating to the spiritual practices of the ancient Druids inhabiting Britain prior to the Roman invasions of the first centuries CE, modern Druids continue to look to their forebears as a source of inspiration and guidance. I argue that modern Druids tend to have a much more sophisticated grasp of the foundations of their spiritual practice than many academics claim. This attitude to the past has much in common with recent developments in post-modern historiography, including a realisation that it is impossible to isolate a single, objective past without relying on written accounts, which are in turn subject to the politics of representation. Using Horkheimer and Adorno’s concept of disenchantment, I argue that this attitude has been marginalised since the onset of the Enlightenment project, when the separation between history and myth was consolidated, and the latter came to be regarded as little more than a poetic lie about what really happened. Since that time, the texts surrounding Druidry have proliferated, to the extent that the connection between the Druid mythos and the true past has been lost. As a result, the mythos exists today in something akin to what Baudrillard terms hyperreality, in that it represents not the historical Druids but the tradition of representation itself. This recognition renders a conventional mode of assessing the past obsolete. A more sophisticated attitude is required, and is demonstrated by members of the modern Druid community.

Please find the pdf here: