A reader of this blog asked me recently on an old post how has this spiritual path helped me to heal, and do I have suggestions. Here is my answer.
First Druidry got me back in-touch with myself and got me to see who I was, who I am, and who I want to be. It also, and this is a big one, got me back in touch with feeling at one with nature. This was very much a balm to my tortured soul and ego. I did this by spending time quietly in nature. Hours of hiking some place quiet and just sitting, stilling the thoughts and emotions, just listening to the nothing and everything that is nature. The two powers exercise got me in touch with the energies of nature and of magick.
Shamanic work has been and still is a key component to my healing process. Through Shamanic techniques I have come to the realization that I was just running through the forest shooting everything I came across with arrows. Years later I was able to face my shadow self for the first time, and then again not so long ago. Shamanic journeys taught me that at the heart of the greatest evil could be found good intent. This was a seed to forgiving my ex.
Druidry has given me a system for doing daily work with the holy kindred made up of the gods, land spirits and the ancestors. All of these beings have spoken to me at different times guiding me to be a better person. All have brought blessings and challenges my way.
Paganism and Druidry have brought the most amazing friendships my way that I have ever had. Friendships that have let me tell and retell the pain and suffering that I needed to get out. Friendships that have loved me when I couldn’t love myself.
How do I know I have healed? I know because the buttons the ex use to push so easily no longer work. Nor do I anger as easily as I once did. I find my days filled with joy and laughter. I wake up in the mornings excited for the day and looking forward to what may come. Recently I have found myself growing ever more compassionate. When I hear things that would have in the past made me feel angry and or indignant about something someone did, I now only feel empathy toward them and wonder what pain they must be in to behave such.
One thing is that is key, absolutely essential, and this applies to any spiritual practice that is going to bring about healing is that you have to DO IT! I mean really do it and do it every day. You have to live it, eat it, breathe it, sleep with it. It has to become a part of what you do every day, of who you are. Do it when you’re board with it. Do it when it’s raining, hot, cold, stinky. I don’t care if it’s raining bombs out…do it. I do it when I am sick, when I am stressed, when I am mad, when I happy, when I am tired. When I am busy, I just get out of bed earlier. It’s not enough to read a book, or watch a youtube video, or just think about doing it. You have to actually DO THE WORK. Any spiritual system in the world can lead one to healing, but even the most powerful one won’t do anything if you don’t DO THE WORK. Most days I enjoy it, but some days I understand why it’s called “work”. There are so many things out there that will try to distract you. Kids are a huge one, work, significant others, pets, chores, TV shows. All of these things are only distractions and obstacles if you allow them to be. They all have solutions. They are all just excuses why you didn’t/don’t do the work.
Someone once emailed me and asked me, “in your words, what does it mean to be a druid?” My response was simply this; To be a druid you must have the heart of a poet, the will of a warrior, and the mind of a scholar.