Henge Happenings #56
New Address: The Henge
of Keltria, P.O. Box 1060 Anoka, MN 55303-1060
Feast of Death 2002
Perhaps, I think each Great Feast is my favorite when the Wheel turns.
Perhaps that's why Samhain is my favorite now. However, there is something
about the quietude after a busy and hot summer. My eyes feast on the
browns, reds, golds and muted greens every time I look out a window
or go outside and I am wrapped in a blanket of calmness.
My favorite place to sit is on our back porch where I can hear the
dry leaves rattle like sabers. I feel the fresh wind driving though
them bearing a small taste of the Atlantic Ocean. I love the way the
slanty afternoon light plays in the rock garden. Snoodled in a warm,
brown sweater I settle into a comfortable canvas chair to revel in my
senses. Sometimes I enjoy a tart, crisp apple. This is bliss. It gives
me time to reflect on my successes and defeats of the past year.
At my place of work, many are making Halloween preparations: this party
here, that ritual there and conventional costumes to be constructed.
I hear excited voices and raucous laughter as I move from one place
to another. I feel odd. I ponder the Wheel of the Year and acknowledge
that the carnival atmosphere is better suited to Beltaine. Indulging
in a mental shrug, I continue about my business. You might observe,
that while this is my favorite Feast, it is also my most dreaded. Truly,
I'm not a wet blanket; I'm excited, too. However, my excitement is of
a different nature. I feel mildly interrupted by a myriad of wild, well-meaning
people while I have a lot on my mind.
Since the Feast of Fallow, Keltrians have measured and weighed their
individual and Grove harvests. Some are insufficient while others are
splendid. We have had weeks to assess our yields and now the time has
come to address the question: What next? Should it be a continuance
of the previous year's focus or something entirely new? Perhaps this
is why I retreat to the porch without twenty-first century distractions
to woo my mind away from the business at hand. I have much to carefully
This New Year season is the time Keltrians create individual metaphoric
seeds to represent the next set of goals to be accomplished. These goals
are either of a highly personal nature or designed to have a local or
global effect. These seeds are charged with our sincere intentions to
This seed that I commit to the depths of my spirit must be protected
and nurtured. I am responsible for encouraging it to grow though the
rituals I keep and magicks made. I feel obliged to remain centered and
focused on the task at hand. At the same time, I feel excited and joyful.
Perhaps this truly is my favorite Feast.
I wish you a joyous New Year and safe Samhain.
Walk with Wisdom -- Wren
the Vice President
I learned a major lesson this summer from the Nature Spirits garden
I started this past spring. I had intended to start this garden to welcome
the Nature Spirits into my yard. Of course, I thought, the Nature Spirits
wouldn't want any assistance from me. Simply letting the garden grow
wild will attract them. And it did. Only not the type I was hoping for.
Spider mites were quick to move in and eat all the beautiful plants
growing there. Soon it was a brown weed patch, overgrown and uninviting.
It didn't really call out "Hey the Nature Spirits are here"
I walked by it one day while I was out doing yard work. I noticed
how pathetic it was looking. So I stopped and pulled a few weeds. Under
them I found a few ferns and some bulbs that hadn't grown this year.
Then I pulled more weeds and noticed how much better it looked with
some tender care and love. It seems what was missing in the equation
was me. I was too busy thinking my grand plan would work so well to
stop and literally care for the garden. All I had done up to this point
is a small simple ceremony of dumping the libation bowl into the garden
after ritual. Although this was important, it was not enough to give
me the garden I hoped for.
Then I reflected on how much effort I was spending in getting ready
to lead rituals for my study group. I spent a whole day cleaning, followed
by a day of shopping for food and cooking. On top of this I would spend
a day planning and preparing for Grove's Choice if it was a seasonal
feast day. By the time ritual rolled around there was little energy
left. Once again all my attention had been focused on an end goal of
my making. I wasn't spending time giving the care and love that was
needed to this project. It was beginning to feel like work to me and
didn't hold the same spiritual high for me.
After tending to the garden it began to take shape. The yew tree growing
there even came back a bit after the "mitey" attack. Now when
I walk by I notice how well it was doing (alas, frost and cold are putting
a halt to things for now). I think about what to do next year. That
occasional weeding and earth friendly pest control are things that can
enhance a garden and welcome Nature Spirits. That if I neglect things,
neglect to nurture myself or the garden no one will want to come.
I wonder at how many of us continue to trudge on trying to force our
will into shape when our spirits are not in on it. When finishing the
work becomes the major focus of our lives, it leaves so little space
for enjoying life. I know I enjoy ritual more when I've taken the time
to meditate and come in tune with things, not just have a clean house
and good food ready.
I hope you'll pause this Samhain as the dark half of the years arrives
and take time to sit back and enjoy the fruits of your labor. For even
as we look to what next year will bring and what we need to do, stopping
to celebrate gives us the energy and reward to go on. To move into a
new year with hope and promise. To leave behind the drudgery and gloom
of goals not met because we didn't/couldn't devote enough energy to
Walk with Wisdom,
© Copyright 2002
All material published in Henge Happenings is
© Copyright by The Henge of Keltria, Inc.
All rights are reserved.
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Protected by the Berne Convention.
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The Druid's Path
by Tony Taylor
I am often asked what do I consider to be the three most important
or fundamental aspects or elements of Keltrian Druidism. I thought that
I'd share my thoughts here.
The "First Foundation" of Keltrian Druidism says to, "Honor
your Ancestors, revere the Spirits of Nature, and worship the Gods and
Goddesses of our Tribe."
Ancestors can be viewed in many ways. Certainly, your direct lineage,
genetic, ancestors are included, but also included are those who have
contributed to your being the person that you are. Honoring them may
take many forms. Certainly a personal altar or shrine is one way to
do so. Working on your genealogy so that you may know more about your
ancestors is another. Regularly thanking those people who have helped
you to become the person that you are may be another. The key is that
you honor your ancestors and you don't do it just at Samhain when it
is easy. Do the people who know you well know that you honor your ancestors?
Do the people who have helped to make you the person you are today know
of your appreciation?
Nature Spirits also may be viewed in many ways. Do you revere the spirits
you encounter. These may be magickal (faerie) or mundane (domesticated
cat) Sometimes this aspect of Celtic religion can be as mundane as volunteering
at the animal shelter or picking up trash along a highway or river.
Sometimes it may be magickal like maintaining a sanctuary for the Faeries.
In Keltrian Druid beliefs, we believe "that all life is sacred
and should neither be harmed nor taken without deliberation or regard."
The gods and goddesses of "our tribe" are the Tuatha de
Danaan. We honor and remember them as a group and develop fellowship
in doing so. It doesn't matter if you believe that the Gods are individual,
distinct deities, aspects of a single unifying god and goddess, or human
interpretation of a single unmanifest deity. What matters in Keltrian
Druidism is that you meet regularly and the Gods and Goddesses of your
Celtic Tribe; that you give them thanks for the bounty in your life.
Do you provide particular homage to a specific deities during your rituals?
Honoring your Ancestors, revering the Spirits of Nature and worshipping
the Gods and Goddesses of our Tribe are the three most important aspects
to our religion and compromises what we call our "First Foundation."
Henge Happenings now accepts advertising. For a copy of
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The Bard's Path
Somewhere in the deep black ocean
waves began to swell from a deliberate force
rhythmic crashes held dominion over lesser forms
while silently they raced towards the rocky shore
Crackling embers were all that remained of my fire
bitter winds blew strands of hair from my face
throwing off my nightdress, I ran into the wild night
souls of the wind howled as the hour eclipsed
All my gestures were a tribute of remembrance
I built an altar by the edge of the turbulent sea
shells and stones reflected like celestial bodies
and I cried for the time when he once loved me
O'Ancient companions, awaken from your chambers
on the cusp of the Winter night _ few hours remain
This, is my time
I have become one with forever
Hear my devotions through the pounding rain
By what name shall I call him tonight
his sides will blend before my eyes
through the dark I'll see his silhouette
yet, not a word between us need be spoken
Strange shadows were clouds in that violent sky
I danced as the rain beat against my naked breast
birds of the sea screamed in a winsome chorus
as I summoned the gods _ Bring him back to me
© 2002, Ni Bhrigid
The Henge of Keltria
1. We believe in Divinity as it is manifest in the Pantheon.
There are several valid theistic perceptions of this Pantheon.
2. We believe that nature is the embodiment of the Gods
3. We believe that Natural Law reflects the will of the
Gods and Goddesses.
4. We believe that all life is sacred and should neither
be harmed nor taken without deliberation or regard.
5. We believe in the immortality of the spirit.
6. We believe that our purpose is to gain wisdom through
7. We believe that learning is an ongoing process and
should be fostered at all ages.
8. We believe that morality should be a matter of personal
conviction based upon self respect and respect for others.
9. We believe that evil is not a matter of inheritance but
of intent, therefore actions are not in themselves evil.
Rather, it is through the intent behind actions that
evil can manifest.
10. We believe in the relative nature of all things, that
nothing is absolute, and that all things, even the Gods
and Goddesses, have their dark sides.
11. We believe that individuals have the right to pursue
knowledge and wisdom through his or her chosen path.
12. We believe in a living religion able to adapt to
a changing environment. We recognize that our beliefs may undergo
change as our tradition grows.