The Modern Druid

I think some while ago I said I’d say something about what a Modern Druid is, when the Ancient Druids are extinct.

Modern Druidry has several faces with different approaches to their own style of Druidry: some are in the form of mystery schools, some as Mason-like lodges, some emphasise more shamanic or pagan paths, others are quite eclectic, and there are some that aren’t spiritual or religious paths but are part of the cultural traditions of the modern Celtic countries. But they all are very modern creations, the earliest of which appeared in the 1700’s Druid Revival. If you search on the Internet you’ll find lots of different groups and organisations all with “druidic” interests.

I am a member of OBOD, currently in the Druid grade, and this is a way of formalizing my Druidry. I am guided through three grades: Bard, Ovate and Druid, each of which concentrates on certain druidic subjects and reflect well the structure of my own journey, even from before joining OBOD. I feel its graded structure reflects something of what I have been through, so it feels very natural.

Through being a Bard I began my journey of self-discovery and creativity. Through being an Ovate I learnt of my connection to nature, and gained insights into myself and the world around me. Through being a Druid I am learning of a sense of responsibility and service to the world, to humanity and Gaia.

This is a very brief view into Modern Druidry, the three grades of Bard, Ovate and Druid, and my own journey, so I shall revisit this in the future, especially as I advance through OBOD’s Druid grade.

But… Aren’t the Druids Extinct?

Ah, yes, good question. Well yes, basically; the pre-Christian tradition/institution/s that was/were found in Ireland, Britain, Gaul and possibly further afield. Not only were they a sacerdotal class of their culture but also the intellectual and political elite of their time! But they were all slaughtered by Romans and/or converted to Christianity, and whatever traditions they had remained in folklore, Bardic colleges and not a lot else.

But as you can see I am not extinct. I’m not part of any sacerdotal-political-intellectual class of my society, and I’ve never met a Roman from 2000 years ago.  I ‘ve never seen a pre-Christian tradition/institution because I was born into a Christian background in a world that is becoming more and more post-Christian. How far away from the original Druids can you get?

I’m a decidedly Modern Druid (in training) not an Ancient Druid (I’m using a computer if you haven’t noticed). Now what is a Modern Druid? That’ll have to wait for another blog…