| Grove Leader's SIG
When I first started studying Keltrian Druidism, I wondered how
to visualize multiple views of Deity existing in harmony. After much thought
I came up with a way that made sense to me. From this evolved my "Almighty Bread
Theory". This theory has helped me to understand the differences between animism,
pantheism, panentheism, monotheism, duotheism, polytheism and pan-polytheism.
It has also helped me to see how these different ways of viewing Deity may or
may not fit into Keltrian Ritual and Theology.
My interpretation of the conception of deity is similar to the
way people perceive a loaf of bread. A home economist rates bread on several
important distinctions. It is rated on appearance (how each ingredient has performed
in the loaf's creation), taste (baker's skill in baking bread) and texture (proper
combination of ingredients).
How important each separate ingredient's job is
in producing a loaf of bread determines how that ingredient affects the final
outcome. Animists believe that each ingredient has a "soul" that
imparts flavor, texture or purpose to the loaf's baking process. Even when that
ingredient is part of another (such as water and calcium exist in milk). They
all have "soul" and are equally important in making bread.
Pantheists believe that it is the baker who unites and
perfects the bread as a "God" of bread preparation. The divine baker resides
in all of the ingredients chosen for the loaf. Some ingredients may be as important
to the loaf as the bread baker (such as garlic or pumpkin) or they may not depending
on the baker's tastes.
Then we arrive at those who believe that it is the combination
of ingredients that make a loaf rate high. This is where kneading comes in.
Kneading combines the ingredients and helps to produce rising. Rising will make
a loaf both light and airy, or hard and dense. This is parallel to panentheism,
which stresses the importance of everything combined making the ideal loaf.
Some see a loaf of bread and can not accept it as something made
of distinct ingredients. These would be the monotheists. They do not
desire different types of bread. They are happy with one loaf and always make
it the same, exact way. Only the end product, the loaf, is truly important.
It is no longer flour, yeast, etc. it is bread. It has transformed to become
more important than the parts. It is above the parts. It is ALMIGHTY BREAD.
Others see just one ingredient as producing the most important
quality of the loaf. These are the people who distinguish bread as white or
wheat, the duotheists. Some of these people prefer only white, some only
wheat, while others like both equally. They recognize that the distinction of
the loaves is into white and wheat categories.
While others have a slightly different approach. They rate loaves
on the type of bread. Each type has distinct characteristics. Such as quick
breads like banana are moist and chewy, while yeast bread is airy and unleavened
bread is more dense and flat. They like a little variety and can not really
say that only one or two types of bread are important. They call themselves polytheists. They do not deny the views of others, but prefer to look
at a larger picture of the world of bread rating incorporating a more diverse
The pan-polytheists see it similar to the polytheists.
What separates them is the belief that flour still carries a heavier weight
in category designation. They also contend that all bread, even separate categories,
is still bread. Bread is multiple and flavorful in separate kinds, but all of
the kinds unite together to become the art of bread.
Keltrians recognize Deity "as it is manifest in the Pantheon and
that polytheism, pantheism, panentheism, animism and pan-polytheism are all
valid perceptions of said Pantheon. This indicates a belief in something "greater"
than a single person does. How divinity is perceived is a function of the individual's
singular view. Most views of divinity can fit within Keltrian Druidism." This
is from the 13 Beliefs of Keltrian Druidism (these are published in several
of the Henge publications).
A Pantheon is a group of Gods and Goddesses from a single
culture. They are often related to one another and appear in myths together.
Most Keltrians focus on the Irish Pantheon of the Tuatha de Dannan. Most Keltrian
Druids view the Pantheon as polytheistic or pan-polytheistic.
We do not mix Pantheons. Divinity was made known to the ancestors
through the Pantheons. The ancestors adopted a specific way of explaining the
Gods and Goddesses through their cultural Pantheon. When one or more of the
Gods or Goddesses is replaced, the picture becomes distorted. Much like trying
to fill the missing piece of a finished puzzle with a piece from another puzzle.
Think of a puzzle showing a portion of the sky, that has a piece of water (from
another puzzle) jammed into it. It looks similar, but it is not the same.
The entire Pantheon is asked to join us in ritual during the Triad
Invocation of the Gods and Goddesses. The Matron and Patron of a Feast are asked
to separate from the Pantheon and join us in ritual by invoking each into a
candle. Keltrians use a God and a Goddess as a representation of a masculine
and a feminine force, thus balancing the masculine and feminine in ritual. Other
members of the Pantheon may be called upon, such as Manannan is called to open
the watery veil between the worlds, to perform a specific function.
How one views the God and Goddess of a Feast is a personal choice.
There is no right or wrong way to view deity. Rather, there are many ways. The
choice is essentially left up to the individual participant.
This article is dedicated to all that have enjoyed reading it and have encouraged me to share it. Thanks for the support!
Making Magickal Tools
by Steven Marquie, Third Coast Grove
For many years I lived in the country and was fortunate enough to have many trees about my house. Unfortunately, an ice storm destroyed several one spring. While cleaning up the property, I could feel the pain inflected upon the land. I wanted to do what I could to help with the healing process and spend many hours collecting some of the branches. I even went to the extreme to buy a book on "proper" tree pruning. Through the weeks, I had collected some apple, oak, walnut, and maple branches which I kept. As Yule approached the following year, I was inspired to make a few magical wands for friends!
Taking a selected branch, I trimmed it to a length approximately that of my lower arm. Using a "Dremel Tool", I carved a hollow out of the end permitting a crystal to fit. With a bit of epoxy the crystal was inserted and permitted to dry. I next chose an assortment of stones which were appropriate for the future owner. Again using the Dremel Tool, I fit the stones to placements about the wand.
The handle of the wand was wrapped with leather, the end permitted to hang near the closest end to the wand. On the "end" I threaded stones, shells, or feathers to fit the person!
It seems like a lot of work, but the enjoyment I received and the smile on the faces of those friends, was priceless!
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