hÚath

When I do divination, I tend to work exclusively with the Ogam (or if you prefer modern Irish, the Ogham). Those of us who divine, usually have a member of our divination method, which is a regular visitor to our work.

For me this is the fid (letter) hÚath. To many this is an unsettling result. this would be because the keywords associated with this ogam are terror and despair. In the very least this is a herald of some bumps in the road ahead.

If one had this result “following them around” I imagine it could give some people, a bit of a feeling of persecution. However there is another way to interpret this. Fear (terror) can be used to our own advantage. Fear can protect us, fear warns us of things to be well fearful of (say a venomous creature that is being aggressive towards us, or someone threatening us with a weapon). To resist fear, we don’t act with out thought.

All of these are aspects of being a warrior. Resist fear, conquer despair, be prepared for problems.

 

 

I have been watching this, as a curious onlooker, as well this is not quite how I do my spirituality. There is nothing wrong with that, it is just not my bag, to use a commonwealth colloquialism 😉

 

First let me state, I am putting my natural scepticism, and cynicism aside, and assuming all what I am about to describe (next couple of paragraphs, prior to the divination of mine) is not an elaborate ruse, a method of control, or something else less than pure.

 

So what happened was a small group of individuals had what can only be called a shared gnosis, they have called it The Spirit of ADF, and much of the story is detailed here.

 

Now what is this story doing in my warrior blog? Well the story has set my “gut reaction” off, and how. People in ADF are sharing their divinations on this whole thing, I felt I would too. I use ogam, and I use the five feda cauldron and tree layout which Erryn Rowan Laurie has made popular amongst many of us who are Celtic Recons. (1) I do this to see if my “gut reaction” is reasonable, or if it is just my natural distrust of certain individuals.

 

Lets see where we go….

 

First I draw three feda, one each to represent the three Cauldrons of Posey. Coire Goriath,(the Cauldron of Warming, the physical manifestations of what is going on), Coire Ermai, (the Cauldron of Vocation or Motion, the emotions of the situation). Lastly Coire Sois, (the Cauldron of Knowledge or of Wisdom, the intellectual and spiritual things going on). These are linked through the world tree (the forth fid drawn), and the path forward is the fifth fid.

 

So without futher ado, my reading….

Coire Sois: huath                   The Path forward: Ruis

Coire Ermai: straif                 The World Tree:  Ngetal

Coire Goriath: Lus

 

Ogam

 

Now to interpret this, I will add that with all divination, subjectivity is hard. But I am going to try and edit myself out of what I see …. Yeah right J

 

The question is: What does this whole “Spirit of ADF” gnosis represent?

Coire Goriath: Deals with things in the physical world, this can also be called chthonic energy in this sense. It can also be seen as pertaining to the past in some instances. Lus is the ogam pulled, and for this position in the layout, it would indicate that something to do with food , sustenance, and the healing of animals.

Coire Ermai: Deals with the emotional world, and could be called oceanic energy. It might also be seen as the present in certain situations. Straif was drawn, and in this position it deals with alchemy, psychological, and spiritual things being in flux. It indicates change is happening or about to happen

Coire Sois: Deals with the spiritual world, this could be called Celestial energy, and might be seen to be dealing with things yet to come. I drew huath. Now before I continue, I have a long history with this ogam, it often appears in my divinations, and to many people it is an unfavourable thing to draw. Thankfully in this position it is not as harsh. In this position it deals with feelings of loneliness and abandonment.

The World Tree:  This is the fid which deals with the linking of the “three cauldrons” together. I drew Ngetal, it is most commonly associated with healing, in this case I associate it with the “health of ADF”.  Thus all the previous fid, deal with the health of my church.

 

Lastly; The Path forward: This is the crux of the matter, where is this leading us. I drew Ruis. This is a fid of passion, and for group situations this can imply that due to a fear of loss (of control), difficult interactions will happen.

 

Ok so that is a mixed bag. Welcome to divination 😉 This layout tells me a story, that in the past ADF (as an entity, dare I say animal …?) has needed to be feed to keep going, and that ADF is undergoing a time of change, things are in flux. What it represents for the future is that ADF may enter into a time of loneliness and abandonment for some. This entire situation is tied to the health of the “beast” (ADF being the beast). Where this leads is interesting. It appears (to me) that the spirit of ADF is tied to fear of loss of control. Now whom that dear is from is a good question. Is it the mother grove? Is it another group (I will call it a sect and be damned) with in ADF? Perhaps it is the membership of ADF as a whole? Not that you ever have control in that sort of position?

 

So to me, my gut feeling is somewhat borne out, something is going on, with the “Spirit of ADF”. It bears watching.

 

  • Laurie, E. R. , Ogam: Weaving Word Wisdom “Cauldron and Tree Layout”.

Going with the Gut Feeling

 

If you choose the warrior path (is that like the thug life? And it chooses you??), it can be rather dualistic. You sometimes have to do harm, to protect. You sacrifice thins of your own, for the good of community, and strangely enough, you need to be both intellectual (strategy, tactics) and intuitive (go with the gut) with your decisions.

 

If you talk to someone who is a soldier, LEO, or has worked security they will tell you that they spend time studying their objectives, but that they sometimes will also change plans on a hunch.  This is what going with the gut is all about. You get an itch, or a feeling, or a shiver, that something is not right. You can’t explain it, and a lot of the time, it does not matter, but every now and again, you avoid something, due to this niggling feeling.

 

So what is it? Ahh that could fill a philosophical dissertation, and not touch what it might be. So I shall only talk about what it is for me. I feel (thus this makes this a unverifiable personal gnosis, or UPG, and more on this later) that this is the Gods prodding you.

“Hey something is not right here nudge nudge”

 

I’ve experienced this, not in my “day job” science can’t function on gut. Oh your gut will tell you it’s not right, science requires proof.

 

But science is not every day life. It is very important, hell I feel I do a great deal of good, making the next generation of pharmaceuticals for clients. But come now who here needs to know how to deal with hundreds of litres of Hydrofluoric acid on a daily basis? No? Thought not J

 

But as I said, I have had those gut feelings. That someone is lying. Oh they are believable, credible, but my cut cries “liar”. I’ve been in parts of town is sizable urban areas, walking with my dog (at the time a sizable newfoundland/Boarder Collie cross) and decided to get out of where we were. Again another time, we were in a fairly rural dog park, and we both were “something is off”, we got out. There apparently was a bear just out of hibernation in the area. These are just a few mundane experiences, but it can be a spiritual “do not want” as well.

 

So for a warrior this is a skill that is invaluable. Despite my cerebral nature, I’ve cultivated that side, and listen to it.

 

So I mentioned UPG, and that I would talk to it. Here goes. Forgive the amateur linguistics…

 

Gnosis, it is a greek word. We get the term gnostic from this, but the words ignorant and agnostic  can be traced through this word as well, and slightly more indirectly Knowledge.

 

But what does it mean?

 

Gnosis  is a feminine Greek noun, which means personal (or spiritual) knowledge. There is a term for intellectual (learned) knowledge as well eidein (which the word idea may be traced from). So gnosis is a belief you have, eidein is something you can (hopefully) prove.

May pagans will throw around (like an insult for some reason) UPG: Unverifiable Personal Gnosis. Now there are shared gnoses,, there are possibly even verified ones (they are called confirmed gnoses, and they have been “confirmed” in lore. Now I also say “like and insult” which is a little unusual, as anything spiritual is a gnosis on some level. In all honesty I am wary of people who claim they are gnoses free, even atheists (they still cannot prove that there are no gods, and I say this as an ally to them). So saying “Oh that is UPG” is like saying to a scientist “oh that is just a rough draft of a paper” when it is unpublished 😉

 

So try going with your gut feeling, see what happens 🙂

 

 

 

 

Starting Over

I’ve neglected this blog, and to be honest I lost my way with the damned thing. So I have chosen to start over. Thus if you wonder where the posts went, they went into the trash.

 

If anyone read my old blog which I abandoned a number of years back, I am big on the idea of personal responsibility. Especially when one claims the titles like “warrior” or “druid” or hell even “witch”.

 

So I claim responsibility for having lost my way. I stopped actively focusing on my spiritual side, and let life sweep me along. That now ends.

 

So starting over means a great many things. It could mean walking away from everything you have built, or it could mean building on what is already there, and regaining focus.

 

I’ve seen my own pagan “Church” have to “start over” after the passing of the founder Isaac Bonewitts. Well I say start over, in the sense that he was not around to speak for himself, not forget he existed.

 

This rebirth (of sorts) has been fraught with issues. Up until near Isaacs death, the Arch Druids of ADF were all “Isaac’s Drinking buddies”. Now I say this based on comments made to me by some long standing members of ADF, not my own views, as I don’t know. I never met the man in person; I have never talked to the “drinking buddies” off line. But with Isaacs passing, it seemed that ADF was moving to new grounds. Indeed there was a feeling of expectation within the organization. Sadly Isaac no longer being physically with us, exposed a group of potential problems, which are now actual, significant ones:

 

  • There has never really been a structure for the various subgroups within the organization.
  • Now that we have our own Clergy program, and a not insignificant Clergy population, it appears that there is a faction within the “Church” which does not like this. Note Isaac wanted us to train our own clergy.
  • Using the term “following Isaacs dream” as a way to get elected. Ignoring that ADF has been beyond his ideas (dream) since the mid 1990’s.
  • Oh yes, political factions are forming.

So let’s address some of these:

 

Structure is a dirty word in the Neopagan world in many ways. However ADF has a phrase that it wears like a fetish (not the kinky sort, well perhaps). “Why not excellence?”. Excellence implies standards, and standards imply some sort of structure, by which to measure excellence against.

 

Clergy, that is another dirty word in the pagan sphere. Again it implies a lot of things that make many of us uncomfortable. Dirty old Uncle Gerry laid the ground for this with the idea we could be our own “clergy”. Even if we do not subscribe to his path (I certainly do not), it is ingrained in us, that no one “tells us how to interact with the Gods”. This is very true, but Clergy are more than ritual leaders. When you get a large enough community (say bigger than a coven or two), you need specialists, who fill the role that our ancestors had for Druids, Magi, Flamen, Brahman, etc. lets call them Clergy. However there is a suspicion that someone is trying to make a move to power, by dedicating themselves to the role of Clergy. Hence it becomes an us versus them situation. it is as if there is a worry about a pagan space pope getting into power or something. I mean we never had that with Isaac as un-elected leader right???? *watches tumbleweed roll past”

 

 

We do not actually know what Isaacs’s final views on ADF were. He never said much about ADF after he had to step down as Arch Druid in perpetuity (due to ill health). In most ways he did us a favour when he stepped down. It made the group have to be more self-sustaining, rather than one man’s vision. However it also has allowed the ghost of Isaac to be used like a weapon. In this most recent election, 3 of the 4 candidates for Vice Arch Druid used the phrase “following Isaacs’s dream” in their biography on why you should vote for them. It has been used by people like a weapon (in disagreements) since he died as well. Without getting into the nitty gritty, are we tied to one man’s dream? If so, we are a cult. Gareth does not do cults.

 

Political factions are indeed forming. It was inevitable, but for me, sad, that a young spiritual movement, has got two major factions forming up to essentially do war. Now this might end up being some equivalent to “Democrats vs Republicans” or “Conservatives vs Liberals” (except its not that sort of split) that we see in some political systems. I hope it is that, because the other option is it is the Sunni vs Shi`ite or Catholic Irish vs Protestant Irish sectarian nonsense we see in Abrahamic Religions.

So what does this have to do with being a Warrior? A whole lot. The  theme of being true to yourself holds. A warrior should hold to the virtues they hold to be the truth. Otherwise they are soldiers following orders. Our myths are replete with Warriors telling their leaders to go “kiss their axe” if it breaks their code of conduct. Sadly the last point is also something that a Warrior will take note of. Warriors choose sides, and that means you may line up against people you once called friend. In this case it is a stance of rhetoric, but in the past, the Clan you stood with last year, may be across the others side of the battlefield this year.

 

Slaine (Fabry):

 

Which brings you back to the first point. Perhaps the most important one:

 

What do you stand for?

 

I leave you with some nonsense to lighten this all 🙂