We are Remembering

SonnenaufgangIt was the OBOD Winter Gathering on Saturday.

Twice a year, around the time of the Solstices, members of the Order gather in Glastonbury for workshops, music, ceremony and community. At the Winter Gathering we always have a morning ceremony in the Chalice Well Gardens, then down to the Town Hall for some kind of group activity. We have talks and workshops in the afternoon, then in the evening a feast and Eisteddfod.

Always a great day.

On Saturday, after the Chalice Well, we held an hour or so of chanting and singing. It was led by my Bardic buddy JJ and was built around his Touching the Void workshop that uses chant and voice to open the heart. I joined him for one of these at the OBOD International camp in Germany in May and a much smaller group of about 30 joined together, sang, and held silence for about 2 hours. It was an amazing experience. Would it work with 200 people? I wasn’t sure if it could, but it did.

The chants he works with are sacred chants from all over the world, and with each one you could feel the positive change happening in the room.

He then introduced this chant:

We are Angels,

We have forgotten these things,

Trailing clouds of Glory,

We are remembering.

I can’t give the melody here. It is beautiful, and simple. At first I felt resistance. I think due to the backlash within the Pagan community to all things fluffy I too occasionally have an inner cynic that very obviously is a defence mechanism to prevent me from completely opening my heart. I think many of us have that. Some people listen to that voice. I tend to tell it to shut up and back off. So I did again.

We started singing. The chant was sung over and over again. I closed my eyes, allowing the sound of 200 voices to wash over me, to enter into me, to join with my voice as one. I opened my eyes and saw people had tears rolling down their faces. They were smiling. The singing continued.

We are Angels, 

We have forgotten these things,

Trailing clouds of Glory,

We are remembering.

JJ raised his hands, and the chant ended on a long, drawn out note. We are rememberiiiiiiiiiing. Then, silence. People opened their eyes. Looked around at each other, nodded acknowledgement of that moment. We knew something very special had just happened.

As with the hunting Barn Owl in my previous article these moments help us to touch with the essence of our true humanity. These moments help us to connect with what we can be. That to hold peace at our centre is so important. Yes, it might sound fluffy but I don’t care. Moments like these are important. They help us reconnect, They help us remember that we are capable of so much more.

We are Angels, 

We have forgotten these things,

Trailing clouds of Glory,

We are remembering.

By | 2016-10-14T11:00:25+00:00 December 8th, 2015|Categories: druidry, religion, spirituality|Tags: , , , , , , , , , |12 Comments

12 Comments

  1. Mike C. December 8, 2015 at 11:54 am - Reply

    That voice and others are so dangerous, and I think we all succumb at some point. That sounds like an amazing experience. Thank you for reminding me such things exist.

  2. Viviane December 8, 2015 at 12:14 pm - Reply

    I absolutely loved the singing on Saturday. I just gave it a shot, being shy of my own voice and all and it was brilliant. I really hope I get to do this again, the connection and the smiles spoke volumes amongst the folks there.
    Loved your chant as well, especially the last one.

    Thanks for the reminder, I could not stop myself singing it to myself when I read those lyrics again just now. What a day for my first ever OBOD gathering.

  3. Leonore December 8, 2015 at 1:18 pm - Reply

    It was such a profound and beautiful experience . Thank you for reminding me to remember . X

  4. Gregory Nathan December 8, 2015 at 1:44 pm - Reply

    Blessings to all, so glad of this edifying report, can feel the harmonies reverberating from this gathering. Looking forward to (as soon as is feasible) joining you all. Am so grateful for the OBOD opportunity to do so.

  5. Tinah Bee December 8, 2015 at 2:18 pm - Reply

    Thank you, Damh, for this loving open sharing. How I love English Expressions. Next time I feel the resistence you are talking about I will tell it “to Back Off!”. Sounds really strong to me and makes me Smile all over.

  6. marian December 8, 2015 at 2:27 pm - Reply

    I really needed all that chanting on saturday, so much pain and anger in this world at the moment, yet get a group of druids together chanting and the world feels right and good again, thank you so much, it did my soul good…

  7. JJ December 8, 2015 at 9:04 pm - Reply

    Thanks for sharing this Damh. I too can have an aversion to ‘Angels’ yet somehow the chanting cuts through all that dross and seems to simply and magically have the capacity to transport me back to my source. Back to our place of belonging. And that’s how it felt on Saturday. Our place of belonging. X

  8. Bronzewing December 9, 2015 at 5:43 am - Reply

    A little fluffiness never hurt anyone, especially if you look at how much hardness there is in this world, a lot of hardness that hurts us all. We need some soft places too.

    I know these days that if I feel resistance to something, it is the very thing I need to do. 🙂

    I wish I had been there.

  9. Lorraine December 9, 2015 at 10:51 pm - Reply

    I couldn’t stop singing ‘We are Angels’, even when my cat objected. It was a joyful expression of such a brilliant weekend…. and yes …… we do forget what amazing things humans can do together if the will is there to change and open our hearts to celebrate the beauty in this world. Chants like these creep in around our defensive mechanisms.

  10. Jeannetta December 14, 2015 at 5:09 pm - Reply

    Children…when we are children and, perhaps, closest to our true nature of pure, positive energy not yet having taken up all the defense mechanisms we do as we journey along…children will sing without judgement and with unadulterated joy 🙂 They remind me…as you have…thank you, Damh.

  11. Loki December 15, 2015 at 4:54 pm - Reply

    You always sound very fluffy and hippielike but I don’t care.

    • Damh the Bard December 15, 2015 at 5:33 pm - Reply

      Neither do I!

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