Thinking About – There is no separation, you are part of me

Firstly, let me wish you a happy and blessed Solstice.

It may be that, like me, you are gazing at a clear blue sky here in the northern hemisphere noticing the clarity of the light on the day of the Summer Solstice. Or maybe you are heading into Winter and the days are shorter in the southern hemisphere. Either way there is that wonderful opportunity that the modern Pagan Wheel of the Year offers – to take some time to stop and notice what is happening in the natural world around us. It really is a blessing. Sometimes our lives are so busy that seasonal changes can happen all around us almost unnoticed. Yet once every six weeks or so there is a Pagan feast day, where we stop and really open to the seasons.

There are many gifts the Pagan path offers and this reconnection is, to me, one of the most important. A friend of mine once said that, if he were asked to sum up the path of Druidry in one sentence, he would say “Druidry teaches us how to reconnect with a deeper relationship to the natural world”. As definitions go it’s pretty good. I would add ‘natural worlds (plural), both seen and unseen’, but that’s my thing. So in a world where we can spend so much time staring at screens, working, being busybusybusy, when a Pagan festival arrives I will always take some time to stop and take notice.

One of the things that occurs to me every now and then is the way us humans can see ourselves as separate from the natural world in the first place. When we sit down to watch a program about nature on the TV it is always about animals, fish, mountains, the oceans, the forests, insects, and we watch amazed. So the anthill in the forest is a natural construction, formed by a member of the natural world, but the human-made reservoir is not. It’s ‘man-made’ and therefore separate. I wonder how healthy that viewpoint is. It continues this myth that the world of nature is there for mankind’s dominion. It’s there for us, not we are a part of it. Surely it makes more sense to look at the constructions and things we do from a position of us being part of nature, and then being honest and questioning whether some of those actions really reflect the activities of a species that is an equal part of the nature of this planet. But I digress…

It’s hard to just jump from the position of separation, to the viewpoint of human beings as part of the natural world. So I think that paths such as Druidry can help develop that relationship until we get to the point that we no longer see the badger as an animal, separate from ourselves, maybe as vermin or a pest, and instead see it as a relation, another Earthling, a four-legged brother or sister. The tree as a being trying to survive and live just as we are; the starling as a winged brother or sister, desperately trying to keep their fledgling safe and fed.

It’s hard to feel that relationship and connection when you are looking at a computer screen, but taking a walk in the woods, or up a hill – a hill is a great place to connect on the Solstice day – and opening up to all that surrounds you, knowing the spirit within us is the same as the spirit of the hedgerow, the galloping horse, the soaring buzzard, the basking snake, the blazing sun on Solstice day. When all of the constructions fall away, there is no separation.

 

By |2018-06-21T12:45:04+00:00June 21st, 2018|Categories: Thinking About|Tags: , , , , , , , , |11 Comments

11 Comments

  1. Char Lewis June 21, 2018 at 12:54 pm - Reply

    Lovely thoughts on this beautiful Solstice day <3

  2. terri June 21, 2018 at 1:58 pm - Reply

    love this.

  3. Staufer Petra June 21, 2018 at 2:00 pm - Reply

    A lovely solstice day to you all.

    To be honest I had a similar ‚discussion‘ with myself yesterday. How about we‘re part of nature and not their masters subordinate them.
    I don‘t remember how I come to this thoughts but I think it doesn‘t matter at all.
    A few years ago before I really opend myself for the pagan ways I went for the hoover when my daughter was screaming over a itsy bitsy spider (she‘s phobia of them) but now I can‘t. I had to try fetching the little one and bring it outside to set it free.

  4. S June 21, 2018 at 2:16 pm - Reply

    Thank you, Damh. This Summer Solstice morning I went out to do my ritual. My unseen Druids were busy and happy dancing and reveling.

    The Sun was still peeking through the trees, the Birds singing happily, all the plants in beautiful Summer glory.

    – a hill is a great place to connect on the Solstice day – and opening up to all that surrounds you, knowing the spirit within us is the same as the spirit of the hedgerow, the galloping horse, the soaring buzzard, the basking snake, the blazing sun on Solstice day.

    This is so beautiful! This is how I want to start my Day and Live my Life! This is what being a Druid brings to me, too!

    All the Animals extremely happy and loving this morning. So much Joy and Abundance!

    We are all one. I share with You and all Others, human, critter, plant and star, Joy! Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!

  5. Kevin Fury June 21, 2018 at 2:26 pm - Reply

    I love this Damh! We are nature but we need to remember it. There are so many voices, subtle and not that are constantly saying the opposite. Thanks and wishing you a blessed Solstice!

  6. Anne June 21, 2018 at 6:02 pm - Reply

    Solstice Blessings & Love to you. I just want to share. Couple of things that happened to my a few weeks ago as I think they are appropriate, feel free to disagree. One morning just before 5am I was standing at my bedroom window, looking down on the communal garden to the rear of the Housing Association flats where I live, and what I saw left me feeling blessed. Slowly making his way through the garden was a beautiful dog fox, yes I know that for many people he is not wanted but live & let live. Then about two days later, I was standing at the bus stop waiting for a bus into town at just before 8am when I noticed movement in the field beside the stop. Two young deer were chasing each other round the barley field, they would run, then stop, put their heads down to nibble some thing tasty, then of they would go again. This went on for two or three minutes before headed off to the wood. These two events happening within days made me feel so humble and blessed to share this life with such wonderful creatures and all the other onderousbthings that Mother Nature has given us. So the point I’m making is that it is wonderful to have a connection & relationship with all beings who live in this and other worlds. Wise words from you once again.
    Blessings
    Anne

  7. Brigit June 21, 2018 at 9:34 pm - Reply

    Thanks Damh, This was a lovely “send off,’ as I leave for the mountains to do my “Druid Solo Ceremony” of Alban Hefin. I plan to share my ceremony & songs with my wild animal friends, trees, plants & flowers, stones, rocks, etc., & will listen to spiritual messages from the sacred river. I will send Gaia & All Her creatures, love, healing & mercy, through ritual, meditation & music…

    Sending Blessings of AWEN, to All Beings on this planet (& beyond), on this Sacred Solstice day. /|\ Brigit

  8. SteveT June 22, 2018 at 9:06 am - Reply

    I totally agree about the way we humans tend to view ourselves as something ‘other’ than Nature but I often think many aspects of Paganism, including Druidry, are complicit. The way ‘gods’ in ‘Pagan’ imagery are almost always depicted in semi-human form and are described with reference to human characteristics, feelings and motivations is just reinforcing this idea that humans are at one level in an hierarchical structure with ‘gods’ just one step ahead. I don’t like using the term ‘gods’ for that reason; too many images of ‘gods’ as just ‘super-humans’. To me the spirits of Nature are just that, they’re not a sort of hybrid half-human, half-animal or tree: tree spirits are pure tree-ness; worm spirits pure worm-ness, but the important thing is none are complete alone. Until we accept that, we may be little better than those who see ‘God’ as a bearded bloke on a white cloud!

    I agree the answer is to get out into contact with Nature, accept that we’re just one part of it and look for the connections that bind it all together, then try to be a complementary part of that web rather than thinking we, or the ‘gods’, are outside it looking in.

  9. Alieff Farwell June 22, 2018 at 6:01 pm - Reply

    Thank you for this very special Solstice post Damh. Our world would be a much better place if everyone made this connection. Blessings to all.

  10. Jeff Stilson June 22, 2018 at 7:09 pm - Reply

    Happy Solstice to all!
    I took some time to stop and take in the world I share. There is a huge old tree im my garden that was here before the town I live in was. He is old and he is wise. He shares with me the time has given. He gives me shade from the heat and I return the favor with the occasional hug and ‘thank you’. I gazed up through his branches at what little sunlight there was on this cloudy day, and breathed deeply. I felt renewed. I swear he smiled and waved. THIS is what being a pagan is about to me. Yes, I am part of this world. And I cherish it. Happy Solstice!
    Peace, Love and Mead!

  11. Sonia June 22, 2018 at 7:20 pm - Reply

    Thank-you. This is so true. I love all of Nature with all of my heart, and it has always been, and always will be, part of me, and I of it.

    Solstice Blessings.

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